Who is Jehovah?

Jehovah is God’s unique name as revealed in the Bible. (Exodus 3:​15; Psalm 83:18) It comes from a Hebrew verb that means “to become,” and a number of scholars suggest that the name means “He Causes to Become.” 

Visit JW.org to get Spiritual and Accurate Answers to Your Questions. Bible transliterated into over 120 languages.


  • Psalm 150 footnote in The New World Translation is so close and yet so far.

    Praise Jah! * has footnote: * Or “Hallelujah!” “Jah” is a shortened form of the name Jehovah.

    'Hallelu' means Praise + 'Jah' is the first syllable of יהוה (different than 'Jeh')

    Watchtower ONLINE LIBRARY has 1A The Divine Name in the Hebrew Scriptures that includes:

    Jehovah’s name was first restored to the English Bible by William Tyndale. In 1530 he published a translation of the first five books of the Bible into English. He included Jehovah’s name once, in Ex 6:3. In a note in this edition Tyndale wrote: “Iehovah is God’s name . . . Moreover, as oft as thou seist LORD in great letters (except there be any error in the printing) it is in Hebrew Iehovah.” From this the practice arose among translators to use Jehovah’s name in just a few places, but to write “LORD” or “GOD” in most places where the Tetragrammaton occurs in Hebrew. This practice was adopted by the translators of the King James Version in 1611, where Jehovah’s name occurs only four times, namely, in Ex 6:3; Ps 83:18; Isa 12:2; 26:4.

    Further, Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, Vol. 1, Chicago (1980), p. 13, says: “To avoid the risk of taking God’s name (YHWH) in vain, devout Jews began to substitute the word ʼǎdōnā(y) for the proper name itself. Although the Masoretes left the four original consonants in the text, they added the vowels ē (in place of ǎ for other reasons) and ā to remind the reader to pronounce ʼǎdōnā(y) regardless of the consonants. This feature occurs more than six thousand times in the Hebrew Bible. Most translations use all capital letters to make the title ‘LORD.’ Exceptions are the ASV [American Standard Version] and New World Translation which use ‘Jehovah,’ Amplified [Bible] which uses ‘Lord,’ and JB [The Jerusalem Bible] which uses ‘Yahweh.’ . . . In those places where ʼǎdōnā(yyhwh occurs the latter word is pointed with the vowels from ʼēlōhim, and the English renderings such as ‘Lord GOD’ arose (e.g. Amos 7:1).”

    Puzzled by Watchtower Society knowing "Jehovah" pronuniciation is ~500 years old while insisting "Jehovah" is the correct pronunciation.

    By the way, The Lexham English Bible is like The Jerusalem Bible for rendering יהוה as Yahweh.

    The 2000 edition of The Scriptures (published by Institute for Scripture Research) has a Preface, which has "The Restoration of the Name" section:


    The Scriptures” differs radically from most other translations in that it does not continue in the tradition of substituting the Name of the Father and of the Son with names ascribed to gentile (pagan) deities. All the names of deities which in the past have been ascribed to the Father, the Son, and even used when engaged in worship, have been avoided.

    One of the post-exilic-apostasies of Orthodox Judaism was the avoidance of the Name of the Almighty, the so-called Tetragrammaton, (the four lettered Name, יהוה). Because of this and a similar and continued suppression and substitution of the Name by the Church, much harm was done to the True Worship. When anyone enquires about this he is told: “The Name has been translated into English as LORD, as was similarly done in other languages.” This argument does not hold water. Guiseppe in Italian corresponds to Joseph in English; however, Guiseppe Verdi cannot be translated as Joseph Green in English, even if that is what it means in English! The proper name of any individual is not translated; it is always transliterated or transcribed in order to approximate its original pronunciation. We repeat: the proper name of any individual is simply not translated, more especially when we are dealing with the most important Beings in all the universe: the Most High (יהוה) and His Son (יהושׁע)!

    We thought of rendering the Father’s Name (יהוה) as Yahuweh (pronounced with the accent on the “u”). On the other hand, John H. Skilton, The Law and the Prophets, pp. 223, 224, prefers “Yahoweh”. The Assyrians transcribed the Name as “Ya-u-a”, so Mowinckle and other scholars prefer “Yahowah”. Some scholars prefer “Yehowah”, because that is the way the Massoretes vowel-pointed it. (Whether this vowel-pointing of the Name was done in truth, or whether it was done to “disguise” the Name, in accordance with the instruction given in the Mishnaic text of Tamid vii.2 (=Sota vii.6), we do not know for certain. There is also the Rabbinical interpretation of the Massoretic text saying that the vowels e, o and a were added to the Name as a Qerě perpetuum which means that the reading of Adonai or Elohim is to be used instead. However, there is no definite proof that the Massoretes originally did it for this reason). Then again, many scholars favour the rendering “Yahweh”. In any event, we decided to avoid controversy over the precise pronunciation and to render it in Hebrew characters as יהוה.

    Such a rendering has solid historical precedent in the earliest copies of the Septuagint (LXX), and has the merit of being true to the text, neither adding nor subtracting by means of substitutions (however well-intended). It has also the additional merit of allowing the individual reader to progress in his own quest for accuracy of pronunciation, as he seeks to obey the scriptural injunctions to call on the Name (Shemoth / Ex. 3:15; Yeshayahu / Is. 12:4; Yirmeyahu / Jer. 10:25; Tehillim / Ps. 105:1, 3;), to make it known (Shemoth / Ex. 9:16; Yeshayahu / Is. 64:1, 2; Ye-ezqěl / Ez. 39:7;), and to not obliterate or forget it (Deḇarim / Dt. 12:3, 4; Yeshayahu / Is. 65:11; Yirmeyahu / Jer. 23:27; Tehillim / Ps. 44:20)! In the same way the Messiah’s Name in Hebrew, יהושׁע, was chosen in order to avoid controversy. All the available authoritative sources and references are in agreement and clearly admit that our Messiah’s Name was יהושׁע (see for instance even Kittel’s Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, under Iesous). However, while some believe that this spelling should be pronounced in the traditional way, i.e. “Yehoshua” others influenced by the Murashu Text suggest the pronunciation “Yahushua”. So we decided to print the Name of the Messiah (יהושׁע) in Hebrew characters as we have done with the Name יהוה.

    While the short post-exilic form “Yeshua” (ישׁוע) is popular with many (indeed the Shem Toḇ Hebrew text of Mattithyahu renders it as such, as also the Hebrew translation of the “New Testament” by F. Delitzch), Dr. Solomon Zeitlin refutes this form as the Name of our Messiah, favouring instead the form יהושׁע (see The Jewish Quarterly Review, Jan. 1970, p. 195). Also see Post-exilic Apostasy in the Explanatory Notes at the back.

    At this stage we need to explain the word “Elohim” used in this translation. English translations have traditionally rendered it as “God” or as “god(s)” in most instances. However, the Hebrew word “elohim” is the plural form of “eloah”, which has the basic meaning of “mighty one”. This word is not only used for deity, but is used in Scripture for judges, angels and idols (Shemoth / Ex. 7:1; 9:28; 12:12; 22:8, 9; Tehillim / Ps. 8:5; 82:1, 6) besides being used frequently for the Almighty. The shorter forms, “el” and “elim” have the same basic meaning and similar usage. (Needless to say, the same applies to the Aramaic equivalents, such as “elah” and “elahin”). By transliterating these expressions instead of translating them as “Mighty One” we discovered a richness in them, and therefore retained them, with the exception of a few instances (noted in footnotes), where the translation of “mighty one” or “mighty ones” seemed more appropriate.

     Institute for Scripture Research, The Scriptures (South Africa: Institute for Scripture Research (Pty) Ltd, 2000), xi–xiii.

    The Mishnah is the first written compilation of Jewish Oral Law & Tradition (Talmud was written centuries later). Sota 7.6 is:

    7:6 A The blessing of the priests [M. 7:2A4]—how so?

    I B In the provinces they say it as three blessings, and in the sanctuary, as one blessing.

    II C In the sanctuary one says the Name as it is written but in the provinces, with a euphemism.

    III D In the provinces the priests raise their hands as high as their shoulders, but in the sanctuary, they raise them over their heads,

    E except for the high priest, who does not raise his hands over the frontlet.

    F R. Judah says, “Also the high priest raises his hands over the frontlet,

    G “since it is said, And Aaron lifted up his hands toward the people and blessed them (Lev. 9:22).”

     Jacob Neusner, The Mishnah : A New Translation (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1988), 458.

    The second Jewish Temple had been destroyed for centuries before Masoretes added vowel pointing to Hebrew text for use in the provinces => https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masoretes

    Could a simple euphemism for God's Holy name have been reversing vowel order (coincide with tradition of saying "Adonai" instead of יהוה), which centuries later became "Jehovah" ?

    Wikipedia article about Jehovah => https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jehovah shows two vowels of "Adonai" match euphemism.

    By way of illustration using the same consonants and vowels, do Rando & Ronda sound the same ?

    (Rando sounds familiar to @BroRando while Ronda sounds strange)

    Correct pronunciation of יהוה is wonderfully Holy (takes my breath away), causing intense Holiness pause while reading God's Word (to worship יהוה). Saying "Adonai", "Yahweh", "Jehovah", or "Lord" does not have intense Holiness pause for me when reading scripture.

    Keep Smiling 😊

  • TruthTruth Posts: 521

    Correct pronunciation of יהוה is wonderfully Holy (takes my breath away), causing intense Holiness pause while reading God's Word (to worship יהוה). Saying "Adonai", "Yahweh", "Jehovah", or "Lord" does not have intense Holiness pause for me when reading scripture.

    Breathtaking Amen!

  • the_MadJwthe_MadJw Posts: 56

    Do you REALLY believe that Jesus taught THAT?



  • the_MadJwthe_MadJw Posts: 56

    Churchianity, like the Jewish clergy SPIT on God's Holy Name.

    Do you REALLY believe that Jesus taught THAT?



Sign In or Register to comment.