|"Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is His name, and what is His Son's name, for you will know it!" Mishley (Proverbs) 30:4||"Every tongue shall confess that He is hvhy Yeshua HaMashiakh, to the glory of Elohim His Father." Phil 2:11|
Why do we call Him Yeshua?
The Aramaic Peshitta community has preserved their sacred texts of the Brit Khadasha [new covenant] as painstakingly as the Torah has been preserved, and they have primacy over the Greek Texts. His name is clearly Yeshua in those texts.
There are other first century, Jewish documents that reference "Jesus", and he is called "Yeshu" in them. Collectively, these are the only such documents we have that give us a solid glimpse at what He was called by His people. In studying His culture, we have learned of Him more deeply, more intimately, so we call Him what He was called in His own language. Yeshua spoke both Hebrew and Aramaic, sister languages that are very, very similar.. 'Jesus' is the English form of the Greek word "Iesous" [though grammatical rules were broken to produce this form of the name], which is the Greek word for the "Old Testament" name "Joshua". So, if one really wants to be a purist about names, looking for an English equivalent, one should call Him Joshua! Hebrews 4 actually calls the "Old Testament" Joshua "Jesus" in the King James version!
So, why Yeshua? It is the Hebrew word for "Salvation" many times over in scripture, and is a Hebrew short form and the Aramaic form of the name Yehoshua. Yehoshua means " hvhy is Salvation". The books of Ezra and Nehemiah use "Yeshua", the Hebrew short form of the name, instead of Yehoshua. In these books, one 'Yeshua' is the High Priest of Israel, and is a foreshadowing of Messiah Yeshua! This SAME Yeshua is named Yehoshua in the book of Zechariah! Yeshua is used in many Messianic prophesies which are translated "salvation", eg: "With joy we will drink water from the wells of salvation," which in Hebrew reads, "the wells of Yeshua." In the book of John, Yeshua stood in the temple and declared "I am the Living Water" during the exact time of the water pouring ceremony, where that verse is quoted! He was using festival liturgy to point the people to Himself! There really is no direct English equivalent for Yeshua, except salvation. Again, the closest, purest, English equivalent 'name' would be Joshua. But, as He is referenced historically as Yeshua, and as He was called that by His people, and as many prophecies of "Salvation" clearly point to Him in that way, that's what we've learned to call Him.
The word "Mashiakh" (or "Mashiach") is the Hebrew word for Messiah, or "anointed". It has become such a complex world for those who are seeking genuinely to serve hvhy with their "whole heart;" The Messiah, Yeshua, whom many call 'Jesus Christ,' has had so many proponents, and so many who wish to define Him, it leaves the believer bewildered sometimes with the mountains of literature one can find about Him.
Why, then, would someone in a modern world, in the largest city in the southern United States, want to define himself as "Messianic," which seems to oppose everything 'Christian' and create such confusion for relatives and friends, and for fellow believers who are remaining in more typically American 'traditional' Christianity?
The Messianic movement began a long time ago (2000 years, to be more precise!), and originally was an effort to give the Jewish person who believes in the Messiah Yeshua, 'Jesus Christ,' a place to worship and serve hvhy in a Jewish manner. Nothing in scripture truly supports a Jew turning away from Judaism, upon close examination. So, why is it that the Messianic Synagogues contain more Gentiles than Jews? Because Gentiles are being brought back to Judaic thinking by hvhy , the LORD, to "provoke them [Jews] to jealousy" and bring Jews into the Kingdom of Messiah. But, more than that, many people are feeling a tug in their hearts to serve hvhy in a pure, biblical, untainted way.
Mashiakh means "Anointed [One]", and Yeshua is the Anointed Savior of the world. hvhy Tzeva'ot, the LORD OF HOSTS, appointed Him to this role, and sent Him from His heart into the world to save EVERYONE. But, only those who accept Him, and then follow Him in obedience to His Word, actually receive the prize for salvation, eternal life. People who really, truly TRUST in hvhy , trust that His Word is true, and begin to "be conformed to the image of His Son", Yeshua the Messiah. That 'image' is what has been blurred, not the Word. The Word remains true, and stable, but the enemies of G-d have managed to flood the minds of humanity with multiple distorted 'images' of the Messiah, people who might 'seem' to serve the G-d of the Bible, but who are actually serving self. Service to G-d is difficult, and sometimes lonely, especially when one begins to obey the simple truth in a world riddled with fallacy. Why run the risk of being rejected, despised, mocked, ridiculed, or 'excommunicated?' Because Messiah Yeshua suffered the very same things, and said that His servants would too.
Here is the ultimate Name.
The above Hebrew text represents THE NAME. There are many of men's opinions about how it is pronounced, and many Messianics make an issue about their rendition of the pronunciation of the name. Usually there is no real academic, linguistic, or theological authority behind the claim. We at Bat-Tzion do not profess to know any special pronunciation of the NAME. What we do understand about it, however, is that this name, we'll refer to it as hvhy (or Yahu'ah), is the Sacred Name which Elohim used to refer to Himself from man's perspective. He calls Himself "Eyeh Asher Eyeh", but He told us to call Him EE-AH-OO-AH, Yahu'ah, spelled hvhy in Hebrew. [The Rabbis in Iraq, who have been there since the time of Daniel, pronounce it thus; seems the most convincing argument in the pronunciation debate].
The Name means, "one who exists", and is a composite of the verb "to be" that represents every 'tense' of that verb, "past", "present", and "future". This is why Revelation 1:8 reads, "who WAS and IS and WILL BE" concerning Adonai Yahu'ah Elohim. This Name was given to Yeshua: we see that in John 17:11 and Acts 2:36, Phil 2:11, among other places. This Name is the revelation of the "Arm of Elohim", the Zeroah hvhy , and is the authority that was given to Yeshua. It is by THIS name that He worked His wonders, and it is THIS name that is above all names. The Name that Elohim [God] gave to Yeshua that is above every name is this name. "Every tongue shall confess that He is hvhy Yeshua HaMashiakh, to the glory of Elohim His Father." Phil 2:11
So, Messiah's NAME is not just Yeshua [Jesus], but rather: Yahu'ah Yeshua HaMashiakh
|(Niqudot [vowel pointing] added for emphasis.||Hebrew read right to left. )|
The Name hvhy is what makes Him "L-RD", not just "Lord" as in "master", but as in hvhy , the Malakh [ministering spirit] that appeared in the bush, that dwelt in the cloud and fire, that guided Yisra'el through the wilderness, that appeared to Manoah, and Sh'muel, that spoke to and inspired David: the Word, in a Body, and the recipient of all the authority of Elohim in governing men, the very Son of Elohim.
That Name has been honored by Jews for thousands of years; but, shortly after the time of Messiah, the Jewish community STOPPED saying it; this is part of the man-made 'fence' they put up to protect themselves from breaking the commands. They had begun building that 'fence' in the time of Messiah, with commands such as washing cups, washing hands before eating, etc, that are not found in Torah. They added to that fence the prohibition not to speak His Name in about 150AD. But, if one examines scripture carefully, one finds that Yeshua said this name many times, as did the apostles. If we look only into the Greek texts, it is difficult to see, but if examining the Aramaic texts, we see it CLEARLY.
BUT, most of the time when Yeshua said the Name, He said it within the context of scripture, quoting scriptures directly. When we speak of G-d intimately in a conversation, we call Him Abba, as did Yeshua. We are careful to do the same as He did, and only use The Name hvhy in sacred context. We do not hold anyone in derision if they do more or less. However, we do not ascribe authority to those who say they have special interpretive power over the Name, or its pronunciation, or its use. This is cultic behavior, and rooted in ignorance. Most people who assert these things have no real knowledge of Hebrew, and have tasted the leaven of the Pharisees, and liked it: religious pride. We do not follow such teaching, nor do we tolerate it.