GOD'S NAME

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     The most common definition of God is as Supreme Being, Omnipotent, Omnipresent, Omniscient, Creator and Protector of the universe and humanity. The English word “god” continues the Old English “god”, which derives from the Proto-Germanic “ǥuđán”, and it is usually defined as “any supernatural being worshipped as controlling some part of the world or some aspect of life or who is the personification of a force[1] or “the supernatural being conceived as the perfect and omnipotent and omniscient originator and ruler of the universe; the object of worship in monotheistic religions”.1

 

     In the Scriptures is used the word “god” in reference to living or imaginary beings. In Hebrew language, the word “elohim” (God) is used to refer:

 

Ø      God, translated at English with capital letter “D”: When it is referring to the Creator of the universe, as “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth (Genesis 1:1);

Ø      Son of God (“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; the staff of Your kingdom is a staff of righteousnessPsalm 45:6). According Hebrews 1:8 is referring to the Son of God;

Ø      god, translated at English with small letter “d”: When is referring to a god of the people, as “Where are the gods of Hamath and of Arpad?”(2 Kings 18:34);

Ø      gods: When is referring to the gods of the people, as “You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exodus 20:3);

Ø      goddess: When referring to a goddess of the people, as “For Solomon went after Ashtoreth, the goddess of the Sidonians” (1 Kings 11:5);

Ø      Judges: When is referring to the men placed by God to judge, as “his master shall bring him to the judges” (Exodus 22:6). In Hebrew language is written “elohim”, not “judges”;

Ø      angels (as “For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and have crowned him with glory and honorPsalm 8:5) In Hebrew language is written “elohim”, not “angels”.

 

     The Greek word “theos” is referring to:

 

Ø      God, translated at English with capital letter “D”: When it is referring to the Creator of the universe, as “Blessed is the Lord, the God of Israel (Luke 1:68);

Ø      Son of God (“But to the Son He says, "Your throne, O God, is forever and ever. A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdomHebrews 1:8);

Ø      god, translated at English with small letter “d”: When is referring to a god of the people, as “Yea, you took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Remphan”(Acts 7:43);

Ø      gods: When is referring to the gods of the people, as “saying to Aaron, "Make us gods to go before us” (Acts 7:40);

Ø      Satan (“in whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving ones, so that the light of the glorious gospel of Christ (who is the image of God) should not dawn on them2 Corinthians 4:4).

 

     As regards the name of God, in the text of the thorn bush, “Moses said to God, Behold, when I come to the sons of Israel, and shall say to them, The God of your fathers has sent me to you, and they shall say to me, What is His name? What shall I say to them?” (Exodus 3:13). Regarding “God said to Moses, I AM THAT I AM. And He said, So you shall say to the sons of Israel, I AM has sent me to you” (Exodus 3:14). “I AM” is a referential name which revealed the confirmation that God is, but it is not His name. After the previous pronouncement, God shows to Moses the only name that does not relate to actions and therefore it is His Holy name: “And God said to Moses again, You shall say this to the sons of Israel, Jehovah the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My title from generation to generation” (Exodus 3:15)

 

     In fact, the God’s name is only one, the Tetragramathon “YHVH”, which has not vowels, and therefore its true pronunciation is unknown. The pronunciations that appear in English versions or other languages, such as Jehovah, Yahveh, and other like these ones, are not the name of God, because they have not meaning in the ancient or modern Hebrew and are only manners to represent Him because of the ignorance of the correct pronunciation.

 

     In the Hebrew Bible are written only the consonants and there are not letters to indicate the vowels. If you would want to write “cat”, for example, you would find the letters “ct”. How do you know if you must read “cat” and not cet, cit or similar one? Well, with language knowledge, with attention to the context and the meaning of the text. At the eighth century AC, some Jewish scholars invented the coding named “nikud”, which it is represented with lines and dots around the consonants, but regarding the name of God they did not used it.

 

     Considering the before consideration, the name of God is not possible to pronounce it (although I do not discard that some servants of God can know it). How to pronounce YHVH, if we do not know the vowels that correspond to this word? If we try do a random mix, we may pronounce Yahavah, Yeheveh, Yihivih, Yohovoh, Yuhuvuh, Yahaveh, and so on, but we would be looking for a lifetime the correct pronunciation and we would not know it, because who can tell us the correct one? It would be an unnecessary fatigue.

 

     In the New Testament is not the name of God, so there is not evidence that the Early Church has used it. This shows us that to know the pronunciation of the name of God is not relevant to be saved, although this does not mean that we should underestimate the pronunciations the we know, because with them God is represented in an easy manner.

 

    However, it is relevant to be saved to believe in Jesus, because “there is salvation in no other One; for there is no other name under Heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). Who is your “elohim” or “theos”, dear reader? Whom you are serving (the true God or the god of this world)? Jesus Christ died to bring you the true God, but the god of this world strives to get away from Him? Whom do you obey? Who is your father, God or god? Seek to Jesus Christ, the only way to the Father, and the eternal life.
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Oscar Mata,
19 ene. 2009 10:12
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