RESTORING THE NAMES
“But you are those who forsake the LORD, Who forget My holy mountain, Who prepare a table for Gad, and who furnish a drink offering for Meni. Isaiah 65:11 NKJV
Both Gad and Meni are names of pagan deities. We commonly use the name of pagan deities when we refer to our Creator even after He commanded us not to utter such names. The correct word to use is Elohim. This is the word used in the Hebrew Scriptures which is translated as God in our English Bibles.
I have heard what the prophets have said who prophesy lies in My name, saying, ‘I had a dream, I had a dream!’ How long will this be in the heart of the prophets who prophesy lies? Indeed they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart, who try to make My people forget My name by their dreams which everyone tells his neighbor, as their fathers forgot My name through Baal worship. Jeremiah 23:25-27
After centuries of not uttering the name or our Creator, the pronunciation became unheard to the people of the House of Judah. Instead, they used substitute names. One common Jewish substitution for the real name of our Creator is Adonai in Hebrew which means Master in English.
The Name of the Father
I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as Elohim Adonai, but by my name YHWH [Yahuwah] I did not make myself known to them. Exodus 6:3
The pronunciation of the vowel sounds was a learned process and depended on the context of the word. Later, the Massoretes came up with a system of vowel pointing to assist in the proper pronunciation. However, when it came to the vowel pointing for YHWH’s name, they used the vowel pointing for Adonai instead to remind them to say Adonai rather than Yahuwah. In transliteration into English or other Romanized alphabets, the current usage is YHWH. There have been several pronunciations offered up for YHWH by religious scholars. One of the earlier ones used the vowels of Adonai and modernized versions of the consonants where J is substituted for Y (Yod) and V is substituted for W (Wah). They came up with Jehovah. This is not the correct transliteration for YHWH and neither is the poetic shortened form Yahweh which is still commonly used.
The root, Yahu, is seen in many names whose meaning in Hebrew is understood. For example, the Hebrew transliteration for the prophet known as Jeremiah is Yermeyahu. The prophet known as Isaiah is Yesheyahu.
In most English versions of the Scriptures, the name of our Heavenly Father is again obscured and replaced with “the LORD”. This is as bad as the Jewish custom of not mentioning His name at all. Lord is not a name. It is a title. Its translation into Hebrew is Baal and was used for many pagan deities. The English use the title for land owners. We use the title “landlord” to signify the owner of the property in question. In ancient times, “lord” was used for all kinds of pagan deities. The Beatles song, “My Sweet Lord”, which sounded like a tribute to the Messiah at first, turned into a praise for Lord Krishna (one of the names in India for the sun god).
The Name of the Son
Messiah said in the New Testament that the Father had given him His name. Unfortunately, when the name of Messiah was ‘translated’ into the Greek form of the Scriptures, it was purposefully changed to sound more like the familiar pagan gods of the time. IESOUS was close to a variation of the name of the sun god, Zeus. This made the new religion’s name somewhat familiar to the pagan ‘converts’. But there is no justification for the name of Jesus as found in our English Bibles. You do not translate a name from one language to another any more than you would change your name as you travel from one county to another. There was certainly no J sound during the time of Messiah and I assure you that Messiah never heard the name of Jesus uttered while He was here on earth.
There are many prophesies that refer to the Messiah as “The Branch”. In Psalms, the word branch and son are sometimes intermixed in some translations because the meaning is clear. The Amplified Version makes this clear:
[Protect and maintain] the stock which Your right hand planted, and the branch (the son) that You have reared and made strong for Yourself. Psalm 80:15
In Jeremiah 23:5-6, it is stated:
Behold the days are coming, says YHWH, that I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; a King shall reign and prosper, and execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. In His days, Yahudah will be saved, and Yisra’el will dwell safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: YHWH OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.
This doesn’t mean that his name is YHWH Our Righteousness or YHWH Tsadikeenu which is the transliteration, but rather provides a hint of His character. The Hebrew name which means YHWH our righteousness Yahuzadak. In many modern English translations, they incorrectly transliterate this as Jehozadak, but we’ve already seen that there is no J sound in Hebrew.
Now, to tie it all together, we need to look at Zechariah :
Take the silver and gold and make a crown, and set it on the head of the high priest, Joshua son of Yahuzadak. Tell him this is what YHWH of Hosts says: ‘Here is the man whose name is the Branch, and he will branch out from this place and build the temple of YHWH. It is He who will build the temple of YHWH, and He will be clothed with majesty and will sit and rule on his throne. And He will be a priest on his throne. And there will be harmony between the two. Zechariah 6:11-13.
This prophesy provides the key to the Messiah’s name and describes what He will do. He is the King (Melek) of Righteousness (Tzadik) that we read about in Torah. He will be named Yahushua (Joshua) son of YHWH Our Righteousness (Yahuzadak). If it looks like Messiah’s name is the same as the leader/successor of Moses who led the Israelites into the promised land, it’s because it is. So there we have it:
The Name of our Messiah is: [Yahushua], spelled Yod, Hay, Wah, Shin, Wah, Ayin, which means "YHWH is salvation."
Let’s look at the account of His birth in Matthew 1:
But the birth of [Yahushua] Messiah was as follows: After His mother Miryam was engaged to Yoseph. Before they came together, she was found to be pregnant from the Set-apart Spirit. And Yoseph her husband, being righteous, and not wishing to make a show of her, had in mind to put her away secretly. But while he thought about this, see a messenger of hwhy appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Yoseph, son of Dawid, do not be afraid to take Miryam as your wife, for that which is in her was brought forth by the Set-apart Spirit. And she shall give birth to a Son, and you shall call His name [Yahushua] for He shall save His people from their sins.’ … And Yoseph, awakening from his sleep, did as the messenger of YHWH commanded him and took his wife, but knew her not until she gave birth to her Son, the first-born. And he called His Name [Yahushua]. The Scriptures.
We can now see the obvious connection of the Father and the Son in the meanings of the names. Yahushua means YHWH is salvation and from Matthew 1 we see that Yahushua is referenced to He [Yahushua] shall save His people from their sins.
We now see flocks of people all over the world returning to the true name of the Father and the Son. This is a most important part of the Restoration movement that is the latest work of the Ruach HaKodesh – the Set-apart Spirit.
Matthew 7:22-23 was always a puzzling verse, but comes to light in the presence of this knowledge:
"Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name? Didn’t we force out demons and do many miracles by the power and authority of your name?’ Then I will tell them publicly, ‘I’ve never known you. Get away from me, you evil people.’" Matthew 7:22-23
For an excellent and exhaustive treatise on the subject of the Names, I recommend the reading of the book, “Names” by Todd D. Bennett. It is part of the Walk in the Light series of books. All of his books are very well written and enjoyable to read.
Let’s Get on the Same Page
As we have discovered, there is a problem in both houses of Israel. Because of their unbelief, YHWH closed the eyes of Yisrael until the fullness of the Gentiles (nations) is brought in. We can be very thankful for that. Yahudah, in their religiosity, have suppressed the true Name of the Creator of the Universe, although it is staring them in the face over 6,800 times in the Tanakh (Old Testament). Their religiosity also caused most of them to miss the coming of the Messiah. They ignored many passages of Scripture which described His coming and that were fulfilled in their sight. The House of Judah did, however, fulfill their assignment as the keepers of the Torah through centuries of darkness and chaos. The Scribes painstakingly copied the scrolls of the Tanakh that have survived until these times. When the “Day of the Lord” arrives, and His esteem [glory] is revealed in His saints, the House of Judah will get their blinders removed and they will see the One whom they have pierced and will mourn. They will have their chance at salvation at the feast of Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement). They will be saved in the same way that we must be saved – through faith in the Blood of Yahushua HaMashiach.
One of the biggest obstacles in witnessing to Jews is the name, Jesus. They know that this is a bogus name and has no meaning in Hebrew. They also know that even though the Christian Church professes to believe in the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, they do not follow His commands and instructions, neither do they keep His appointed times. This is a major problem. The Christian Church believes it has all the truth, but in fact, they are as blind as the Jews, maybe more so.
The Christians have Yahushua Messiah, the living Torah, but not the Torah. The Jews have the Torah, but not Yahushua Messiah, the living Torah. Think about it. This is messed up! The mystery of iniquity is hard at work. Satan has been able to really mess up YHWH’s chosen people.
In order for the Christian community to become effective in reaching the Jews, they must come out of their religious bondage and diligently search the Scriptures for truth, letting the chips fall where they may. They must discard the doctrines of Dispensationalism and Replacement Theology, which originated in the pit of Hell, and go back to the Torah to learn YHWH’s instructions. They must use the proper names for the Father and the Son, learn His commandments and do them.
Not all of the commands in Torah are applicable to Christians whose faith is in the Blood of Messiah. These will include the animal sacrifices for sin, temple washing, etc. that were fulfilled and made obsolete at the sacrifice of our Messiah.
As a first effort, you should learn to keep the Sabbath (the 7th day) set apart, learn and keep the Feasts of YHWH (more on this ahead), learn and obey the dietary instructions for good health (Kosher), and use the correct Scriptural names for the Father and Son. As you study the Torah in light of your position as a son of Israel, you will be taught and convicted by the Set-apart Spirit. As you are enlightened, so walk in this new knowledge. We must also let go of the pagan “holidays” to which we have become so attached. This includes Christmas, Easter, Halloween, New Years Day, Valentines Day and others. As you learn about the Feasts of YHWH, and celebrate them, you will find joy in them and, by contrast, see the unholy sham of the sun god holidays with which we grew up.
The Jews must also learn to abide by Torah and Torah only, leaving behind the bondage of Rabbinical Orthodoxy and their fence laws, as they find freedom in the knowledge of Yahushua Messiah and His redeeming work at Calvary. The sheer magnitude of the weight of the fence laws will provide such a great relief when they are cut loose by Yahushua Messiah.
Let’s move ahead and learn about the Feasts.