My pastor just preached on the subject of the names of God and he stated that the only name of God is Jesus and the name Jehovah was created by man. I have to admit that in all my Bibles I do not read the name Jehovah. Could you comment on this?
– MP from England
Sacredness of God’s name (Part 1)
In the original Hebrew, God’s people considered his name too sacred to be mentioned so they used what in English would be only consonants (unpronounceable) to express it. These letters were YHWH. They simply said “Lord” when they came to these portions in the scrolls or in speaking. Eventually the translation of these letters came to be “Jehovah” or “Yahweh.”
I can well understand that you do not come across the word “Jehovah” in your Bible. But I am sure you do come across both “God” and “Lord.” Depending on the root, one of those words has been chosen in English from the original YHWH. It is interesting to note that many modern day Jews maintain the spirit of the original thinking in not pronouncing God’s name by writing it G_D. Still, too sacred to pronounce.
I don’t know what your pastor’s perspective was when he preached on Jesus being the only name of God. If he’s simply saying that Jesus is God in the flesh, I agree. “For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him.” (Colossians 1:19) Yes, when we see Jesus we have the best and fullest picture of God and his name is powerful and we are told to pray in the name of Jesus.
While all that is true, the many names of God revealed throughout scripture are also meant for our use. It is completely acceptable to call on Jehovah-Nissi or Jehovah-Jireh or any of the other names God calls himself. He revealed himself these ways for our benefit so that in life’s many circumstances we could approach him with trust and understanding that he is able to meet all our needs.
You know honestly, I don’t think the Lord is as interested in the name we address him by as he is in our condition of heart when doing so. For more information or study see Names of God – Meanings.