God’s Name

This post explains why SabbathBlessings.com uses the four letters “YHVH” when referring to the LORD.

The image below is from the introduction to my New Living Translation Life Application Study Bible. If your Bible has an introduction, you may find hidden within pages that are rarely read, a similar explanation describing why translators took God’s divine name out of our Bible and replaced it with the title LORD.

Tetragrammaton

At first glance, replacing YHVH’s name with LORD may seem harmless. But what if I told you our Creator’s name was removed from our Bible over 6,500 times (depending on your translation)? There are so many issues with this that I don’t even know where to begin. For starters, I will pose this question:

What if your name was etched out of your biography and replaced with “man” or “woman”? Would the reader truly understand who you are?

YHVH’s name defines His character: merciful, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, forgiving iniquity… [Exodus 34:5-7]

But see how our Bible etches out God’s name?


The LORD descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name, “The LORD.”[a] The LORD passed before him, and proclaimed,
“The LORD, the LORDa God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for the thousandth generation, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, yet by no means clearing the guilty, but visiting the iniquity of the parents upon the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation.”
Exodus 34:5-7

In these three verses alone, YHVH’s name is replaced five times. Verses 5 and 6 tell us that YHVH literally proclaimed His name — not once, but twice! Can you imagine Moses having this awesome encounter with the Creator of the universe?! Yet YHVH’s name is reduced to the title “LORD,” which is commonly used when speaking of pagan deities and human dignitaries. This is the most egregious translation defect in our Bible. When we read the above passage as written, “the LORD,” we are (without conscious) ascribing YHVH’s holy attributes to other gods.


I am the LORD (YHVH), that is my name; my glory I give to no other, nor my praise to idols.
Isaiah 42:8

When I first learned YHVH’s name, I did not think it was important. To be honest, saying His name felt foreign. I was afraid people would think I was in a cult. For months, I justified ignoring His name. I told myself,

He knows I’m praying to Him. He knows my heart.

Then I acknowledged if I really had a heart for God, I would not be ashamed to say His name. Instead, I would be honored He revealed His name.

When reading the Bible, I began replanting His name where it belonged. I witnessed how His name is to be exalted!

You cannot exalt a name that does not pass from your heart to your lips. 


I give you thanks, O LORD (YHVH), with my whole heart;
    before the gods I sing your praise;
I bow down toward your holy temple
    and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness;
    for you have exalted your name and your word
    above everything.
On the day I called, you answered me,
    you increased my strength of soul.
Psalms 138:1-2

Jesus–whose Hebrew name is Yeshua–taught us to begin prayer by hallowing our Father’s name.

You cannot hallow a name that you do not know.


“Pray then in this way: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.
Matthew 6:9

To hallow means “to set apart.” Yet, instead of setting apart our Father’s name, our Bible has replaced His name with a generic title. Contrarily, you will find the names of pagan gods like Baal (125 times) and Molech (9 times) throughout the Bible. Even the adversary [satan] is mentioned by name 47 times, often in the same verse where YHVH’s name was stricken. The Book of Job is a prime example.


6 One day the heavenly beings came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them. 7 The LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the LORD, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.”
Job 1:6-7

Whose name is set apart in these verses?

SabbathBlessings.com strives to exalt, hallow and rejoice in the name of YHVH.

Additionally, we use the Hebrew word for God (Elohiym) and refer to Jesus by his Hebrew name, Yeshua.

May YHVH place His name upon you and bless you! 

Numbers 6:22-27