The 1st Seal—God’s Name
Music: “Glorious is Thy name!”
- The Centrality and Importance of God’s Name
- Bible names have meaning; God’s name means salvation.
- Seven Provisions to Protect God’s Name in Scripture.
- “What is His name?”
- Restoring His name.
1. The Centrality and Importance of God’s Name
A. Name is who we are. Identity theft is a leading crime today, but it’s not new–it also happened to God’s name.
B. The seal of any ruler has his name, office (authority) and his dominion. His name is an essential part of the seal of God.We cannot be sealed by God without knowing His name.
C. A bride must take the name of her husband. If we want to become the Bride of Christ, we must have His Father’s name because He said, “I am come in My Father’s name,” John 5:43.
D. Name is the first focus of the Lord’s prayer—“Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name.”
E. Name is a surprise focus of the first angel’s message: “Fear God and give glory to Him,” (Rev 14:7) but “Give unto the Lord the glory due unto His name” (Psalm 96:8) means we should give Him His name!
F. Hebrew names often were a message about that person. This is true of God; we need to know His character, which is what God proclaimed to Moses when He proclaimed His name—name and character go together, Exodus 34:5,6.
2. Bible Names Have Meaning
Hebrew parents gave names to their children that signified their character, work or message from God. Descending from Adam for 2,000 years, the names of early patriarchs had a message. Adam is “man,” Seth is “replaced,” Enosh is “mortal,” Cainan is “sorrow” Mahalale’el means “God, the blessed One,” Jared is “shall come down,” Enoch is “teaching,” Methuselah is “at his death the breaking forth of waters.” In sequence these names say: Man replaced [with] mortal sorrow. God, the blessed One shall come down teaching [that] at his [Methuselah’s] death, the breaking forth of waters. Methuselah died the year of the flood!
A name connotes character. “A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches,” Proverbs 22:1. God has a good name because He stands behind His word. In this end-time, He will fulfill His word to those who accept His name and principles of His government.
His name represents all of His attributes– “the name of the LORD….merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,” Exodus 34:5,6.
God wants us to know Him and to have His character—this is really more important than simply knowing or saying His name a certain way. But in this end-time, His name and character will go together. Those who have His name will have His character. Those who are not willing to identify with a strange name supported by the best evidence, don’t have His character and remain unsealed.
God’s Name Means Salvation
The Hebrew letters of God’s name have a symbolic meaning of salvation, shown later. The Bible suggests that if we trust in His name and call upon Him by name, He will save us.
“Whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered,” Joel 2:32
“The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous runs into it and is safe,”
“A thousand shall fall at your side and 10,000 at your right hand, but it shall not come nigh you….I will set him on high because he has known My name,” Psalm 91:7,14.
His word will not return void. Most of these references to His name have an end-time context—that’s when His name will prove most saving. We are entering the end-time, so His name is relevant now. It means
Protection ~ Deliverance ~ Salvation!
3. God’s Name Was Profaned and Removed from Scripture
Consider Isaiah 42:8 in these translations—
“I am the LORD, that is my name.” King James Version
“I am Jehovah, that is my name.” American Revised Version.
“I am Yahweh, that is my name.” Jerusalem Bible
Translations have confused God’s name. The preface to the Goodspeed Bible offers this explanation—“In this translation we have followed the orthodox Jewish tradition and substituted ‘the Lord’ for the name… wherever [the reader] sees LORD or GOD.” This is true of most translations!
God Feels Bad About It
Scripture says, “I had pity for mine Holy name which the house of Israel had profaned,” Ezekiel 36:21. Changing His name violates custom and Scripture: Names [proper nouns] are not translated to their meaning. President Bush was not called “little shrub” in China. Names are transliterated to give the same sound, like “Bush.”
Nevertheless, Bible names, especially those with the Hebrew letter, yod, were changed, usually replacing it with a “J” in spite of Christ saying, “One yod…shall in no wise pass from the law,” Matt 5:18. The yod was the 1st letter of God’s name and translators removed the whole name, called the tetragrammaton!
Lucifer, the highest created being, rebelled against God’s government and became the devil. He hated God but he could not destroy Him, so he has tried to destroy His identity—His name. In Scripture, to know someone’s name was to know that person. But most of earth’s billions have little or no understanding of who God is, in spite of His provisions to memorialize His name.
7 PROVISIONS TO PROTECT HIS NAME
1. In Exodus 3:15 God tells Moses to say, “The LORD…has sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.” [His name was replaced by the title, LORD.]
2. When a loved one dies, we remember them with a memorial stone. Grant Jeffrey’s The Signature of God shows that 7 is God’s mathematical signature. It is a mark of end-time truth, like the 7 churches, 7 seals, 7 trumpets in Revelation, and God wrote His name into the 10 Commandments on tables of stone 7 times (where we see LORD or GOD.) The 7 times is a mark of end-time truth, like Revelation is a book of 7’s.
3. No changes were allowed: “You shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall you diminish ought from it,” Deuteronomy 4:2. Translators diminished the name!
4. God said His people were “called by My name…” 2 Chronicles 7:14. This was especially true for prophets; many had His name as part of their names, as we will see.
5. Solomon’s Temple further memorialized His name: “It was in the heart of David my father to build an house for the name of the LORD.” A dozen times in this chapter Solomon mentions His name (obscured now by “LORD”), climaxing with the purpose of the temple—”that all people of the earth may know Your name,” 2 Chronicles 6:7,33.
6. The 3rd Commandment was intended to protect and preserve His name. “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain.” [empty], but we misunderstand it to mean swearing. When translators replaced His name with LORD, they made it empty. Note: His name is seen as four Hebrew letters at the very top of this webpage; Hebrew reads from right to left, so the first, smallest letter is the yod.
7. It is our high privilege to be part of the Elijah movement to “restore all things,” Matthew 17:11. There was no “J” in Hebrew or Greek. His name was Elia which means my Elohim [God] is IA as it is explained below. And being sealed with His name (Revelation 14;1), we play a strategic role to restore it.
SWEARING NOT BAD
In Bible times, swearing was calling God by name as a witness to the truth. Abimelech said, “swear unto me here by God that you will not deal falsely with me…Abraham said, “I will swear…and called there on the name of the LORD,” Genesis 21:23,33. This is the basis of our swearing to tell the truth in court, and perjury is lying after calling God to be a witness. Trouble or calamity has followed many who have sworn falsely.
Thou shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain” (bring to nought, desolate, make empty, Exodus 20:7). If the name is changed to LORD, it is brought to nought and made empty to those who are supposed to hallow it or praise it, but who do not know what it is. If you were God, would you feel honored or exalted by people praising your name if they didn’t know what it was? To prevent our taking His name in vain was the intent of translators, but changing it to a title (LORD or GOD) prevented our knowing His name.
When something bad happens and someone says “God damn it!” they are not taking His name in vain—they are taking His title in vain! God is a title and it is vain or empty to ask Him to forbid what just happened. But we take His name in vain (empty) if we say “LORD” or “GOD” where those capital letters indicate God’s name was originally in the Hebrew text. Using profanity is widespread, but it has deceived us into thinking this is the primary meaning of the commandment. We’re overlooking its intent to preserve His sacred name for us to know and use appropriately.
History is “His Story”
In Babylon the prince of eunuchs changed the names of Daniel and his friends from names that meant praise to God, to names extolling heathen deities, Daniel 1:7. The devil was behind this. He has tried to make us eunuchs [castrate us spiritually] by changing God’s name.
Babylon means “confusion.” The spirit of Babylon is to sow further confusion by changing names, especially those of Bible origin. “History repeats”—Bible translators and Christian publishers yielded to opinions and customs based on ignorance in supplanting God’s name, calling it LORD.
Israel copied other nations in wanting a king and in making a visual representation of God. They knew God brought them out of Egypt and gave them their land, but they represented Him by a calf they called Baal. Oddly, Baal means “lord.” We don’t worship a calf, but we call God “Lord,” the same meaning as Baal in Israel’s time.
“The times of this ignorance, God winked at, but now commands all men everywhere to repent in that He has appointed a [time] in which He will judge [separate those who are His from] the world, Acts 17:30,31.
4. “What Is His Name?”
After asking questions that can only refer to Deity, Proverbs 30:4 asks, “What is His name?” These words reflect our need to know. Josephus, a Jewish historian at the time of Jerusalem’s destruction, gives a major clue. He describes the high priest’s golden crown, “in which was engraven the sacred name [of God]…It consists of four vowels,” Wars of the Jews, Book 5, Chapter 5, Section 7.
Some say those letters are consonants, but a renowned Hebrew textbook says, “Long before the introduction of vowel-signs, it was felt that the main vowel-sounds should be indicated in writing, and so the three letters, yothe, hay, waw, were used to represent long vowels.” A Practical Grammar for Classical Hebrew, Weingreen, Oxford University Press, 1959, p. 7-8. God’s name is spelled yod, hay, waw [vav], hay.
Some modern authorities agree. “The letters of the Name of God in Hebrew are yod, hay, vav, and hay. They are frequently mispronounced Yahveh …[but] they are all vowels.” Rabbi Lawrence Kushner, The Book of Words, Jewish Lights Publ, p. 27.
Consonants [like b, d, k, or m] are made by obstruction of air flow. God’s name has no obstruction like our names or characters have. His name and His character are all flow and melody. Vowels are the essential part of any pronounceable word.
We use the vowels of God’s name in every word we speak or write—we wouldn’t have any intelligible words without vowels. God lets us use the vowels of His name in every word we speak!
His name is said to be glorious, Psalm 96:8. How?
They are glorious because of the meaning of the Hebrew letters that compose it—yod, hay and vav.
1. The yod is the first letter of God’s name. It is the smallest Hebrew letter; it looks like an apostrophe. As a vowel it has the sound of “i” in Gloria and it means hand as in giving, receiving or ownership.
2. The second letter of God’s name is the hay which sounds like “ah” and it represents light or rain.
3. The third letter is the vav and as a vowel sounds like “oo” in tooth. It looks like a concrete nail and has the meaning of nail or hook.
The meanings of the letters suggest they are the initials of the Father, Genesis 22:8, Holy Spirit, Genesis 1:2, and the Son, Psalm 2:12; Isaiah 53:4-7. God’s name is glorious for its meaning depicting the role of Father with an outstretched hand, the Holy Spirit as light to guide us, and the Son nailed for us on the cross.
Some Jewish people think the shama’ of Deuteronomy 6:4 conflicts with this—“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD.” But the Hebrew word for “one” is echad. It means a combined unity as when a man “shall cleave unto his wife and they shall be one flesh,” Genesis 2:24. The Father, Holy Spirit and Son represent a combined unity—one in character, purpose, all-knowing, all powerful. Genesis 1 has the Hebrew word, “Elohim,” the plural word for God when He said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…”
The theme of the first angel’s message in Revelation 14:7— “Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come” is echoed in Psalm 96:8— “Give unto the LORD the glory due unto His name.” Since we are to give Him glory and His name is glorious, it means, give Him His name!
Giving God the Glory of His Name
The best of Hebrew transliterates Josephus’ statement of God’s name (“four vowels”) as IAUA. “I” has the international “I” sound as in Gloria. [Phonetically IAUA is ee-ah-oo-ah.] This may be one reason the Jews “profaned” it–to avoid the heathen mocking it or laughing at them because it is so different. But you wouldn’t want God to have a name like Tom, Dick or Harry; His name must be different.
We should remember His apocalyptic promise—“then will I turn the people to a pure language [margin says lip] that they may all call upon the name of IAUA,” Zephaniah 3:9.
The first two letters (IA= ee-ah) were part of many Hebrew names—the prophets often came in God’s name like JeremIA or ZecharIA. We should pronounce the “i” like “ee” as they do in most countries. Elijah was pronounced “el-ee-ah,” because there is no J in Hebrew. So Elia means El [short form of Elohim, meaning God] is IA. Women named Maria or Gloria have the short poetic form of God’s name (IA) as part of their name. Historically, countries like PersIA or SamarIA also had God’s name as part of theirs.
HalleluIA is an international word meaning “Praise IA” in most languages. You can read this short form of God’s name in Psalm 68:4, except translators supplanted the Hebrew yod with “J” making it “Jah,” but it should be IA [ee-ah].
Because HalleluIA is a praise to Him, and the HalleluIA chorus is a classical piece of music, maybe we should see Him as the Great Musician as well as the Great Physician or Creator. In this case, He is the Conductor and we might all have a part to play in the orchestra–and He will orchestrate it all. If you have an appreciation for classical music, you will appreciate this link to music you can play anytime: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vt-UIKS3jw You may want to copy and paste it where it’s handy.
For information on the 2nd Seal please visit: http://Covenant2ndSeal.wordpress.com
**Why is God’s name linked to the 1st Seal in Revelation 6?
In one sense, the white horse represents a message of truth that goes “conquering and to conquer” in the end-times, like it did under the power of the Holy Spirit with the early gospel. The message of truth for end-times has seven topics that can be linked to the 7 seals as a mark of end-time truth that need to be restored like God’s name. “Thunder” in Revelation 6:1 supports a focus on God’s name because when Christ asked God to glorify His name, it thundered in John 12:28,29. Thunder is also connected with God’s name in Revelation 14:1,2.
5. Some legitimate questions are sometimes given as excuses for not using His name
1. What’s wrong with the name “Jehovah”?
We now know Jehovah is a fabricated name, using the vowel sounds of the Hebrew word adonai [Lord] inserted into the German or French consonant equivalents of the yod, hay, vav. But there is no J in Hebrew and “hovah” derives from “havvah” meaning destruction, ruin or mischief! Strong’s Concordance #1942,1943. This is a misrepresentation of God.
2. What’s wrong with the name “Yahweh?”
“Yahweh” uses English consonants [YHWH] as equivalents to yod, hay, vav, hay. Josephus said they were all vowels. Yahweh doesn’t have four vowels; it only has two–ah and eh.
One authority acknowledges Josephus, but construes the four vowels as two diphthongs– “One of the letters will fall away, apocopate or be silenced in pronunciation and thereby be omitted in transliteration, a phenomenon called Syncope or Ellision in Greek, but these terms are sometimes also used by Hebrew grammarians.” (The Memorial Name Yahweh, Jacob Meyer, Assemblies of Yahweh, 1987, p 164).
To drop the yod phonetically and call it syncope or ellision is wrong. The Savior said, “one yod shall in no wise pass from the law,” Matthew 5:18. As we said above, the yod represents the Father; it should not be dropped.
3. We cannot be sure how to say His name.
When the Greeks had an unknown God, Paul told what he knew and said, “The times of this ignorance God winked at, but now commands all men everywhere to repent in that He has appointed a day in which He will judge the world” (Acts 17:30,31). We should go by the best information available, even if we stand alone. Most men and women in God’s hall of fame stood alone.
4. Considering so many languages, God will not be picky about how to pronounce His name.
God can forgive any sin, but He will not excuse any. Neither will He excuse an unwillingness to know Him personally by name. He says, “I will turn to the people a pure language that they may all call upon the name of [IAUA], Zephaniah 3:9. This suggests He cares about how His name is said.
“In every age there is a new development of truth, a message of God to the people of that generation. Old truths are all essential; new truth is not independent of the old, but an unfolding of it…He who neglects or rejects the new, does not really possess the old.” Ellen White, Christ’s Object Lessons, 127.
Throughout history God has chosen different ways to test His people. We must be open to truth because He is the Truth, John 14:6. Past ignorance is excusable on that basis. Present ignorance is not excusable in a time of judgment as we become enlightened, Acts 17:30,31.
Krisis is the Greek word for judgment in Revelation 14:7. Destiny pivots on openness to truth in a crisis, but human instinct tends to retreat to what is familiar.
Remedy: Seek truth before the crisis and share the light. “Thy name is as oil…” (Song of Solomon 1:3, Jerusalem Bible; Matthew 25:10). Five foolish virgins missed the marriage because they didn’t have oil. This implies they couldn’t find their way to the wedding, but in a secondary sense, they may not have His name. A bride must take the name of her husband.
4. Name is not the issue; character is.
To be sealed with His name means to have His character. “The language of the Bible should be explained according to its obvious meaning unless a figure or symbol is employed.” (Ellen White, Great Controversy, 599.)
In light of the above information, the obvious and primary meaning of “name” in most texts is His name, IAUA, not His character. If we are not willing to stand for or be identified with an odd name, we don’t have His character. His name will test our character and in the end-time, they go together.
5. New Testament writers used “theos” and did not feel it was essential to preserve God’s name.
This presumes that the New Testament was originally in Greek, an assumption that is called in question by a growing number of scholars. Here are reasons why the NT may have originated in Hebrew:
All New Testament books were written by Israelites whose native language was Hebrew, except for Luke.
“When they saw the boldness of Peter and John and perceived they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marveled,” Acts 4:13. Would you expect “unlearned and ignorant men” to write in Greek when it was not their native tongue?
Josephus wrote that although he far exceeded those of his own nation in Jewish learning, he could not pronounce Greek with sufficient exactness, and “our nation does not encourage those that learn the languages of many nations.”
Greek might have been more prevalent in cosmopolitan centers like Caesaria, but it was not the language of the apostles nor the Temple.
“The thoughts and idioms are Hebrew…If the Greek of the NT be regarded as an inspired translation from Hebrew or Aramaic originals, most of the various readings would be accounted for and understood.” (Dr. Bullinger, Companion Bible, App 94)
“We must not forget that Christianity grew out of Judaism…The Pauline epistles were letters written by Paul to small [Messianic] congregations in Asia Minor, Greece and Rome. These early [believers] were mostly Jews of the dispersion, men and women of Hebrew origin….The Epistles were translated into Greek for the use of converts who spoke Greek.” (Holy Bible from the Peshitta, George Lamsa, p xi)
Christ’s concern for His Father’s name was greater than we realize. The opening phrase of the Lord’s prayer says, “Hallowed be Thy name.” Three times in His last prayer He says, “I have manifested Your name unto the men You gave Me. I kept them in Your name…I have declared to them Your name and will declare it,” John 17:6,12,26. It’s unbelievable that something so obviously important to Christ and so central to the Old Testament is not reflected by the New Testament writers.
An easy conclusion is to suspect mischief with the manuscripts. The “little horn” is likely behind this. Daniel prophesied it would “change times and laws.” Paul said, “the mystery of iniquity does already work,” Daniel 7:25; 2 Thessalonians 2:7.
6. God’s Name Will Be Restored!
“I will sanctify My great name that was profaned among the heathen,” Ezekiel 36:23.
“A Lamb stood on the mount Zion and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads,” Revelation 14:1.
Major companies today stand behind their name. “The quality goes in before the name goes on.” God is going to stake the honor of His kingdom on quality—there will be 144,000 who are sealed with His name and who “had gotten the victory over the beast,” Revelation 15:2. They live through “a time of trouble such as never was” without dishonoring Him, Daniel 12:1. Because they live for His cause and vindicate His character in “the hour of judgment,” He will share His throne with them and is not ashamed to call them brethren,” Luke 12:44; Hebrews 2:11.
THOSE WHO HAVE HIS NAME
Those who are written in His book “thought often upon His name…They shall be mine, says IAUA of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; I will spare them, as a man spares his own son that serves him,” Malachi 3:16,17.
These jewels are the headstone—the crown of His spiritual temple. God’s temple of truth has been rising for centuries. Luther, Calvin, Knox, Wesley—many have built upon this temple of truth which is not yet complete, but we may have the privilege of being the headstone.
“Who are you, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shouting, crying, Grace, grace unto it,” Zechariah 4:7. Zerubbabel (shoot or outgrowth of Babel) and Zechariah built the second temple and they are types.
Will we accept His name and be part of the headstone for His spiritual temple? This is a focal point of all those types. This temple is seen in Revelation 11:1 as it is measured or judged when God gives power to His two witnesses for three and a half years, Revelation 11:3.
Unless we know the name of the Creator and “extol Him that rides on the heavens by His name,” [Psalm 68:4] we have a generic god and Satan will one day fill the bill—
“Whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth [an odd name; but His name saves; Joel 2:32] that they might be saved and for this cause God shall send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie,” 2 Thess 2:9-11.
How Will His Name Be Restored?
Before the second coming, “Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things,” Matthew 17:11. It is our privilege to share in this work of Elijah. Since God’s name meanssalvation, a full-page ad in major newspapers could save most people if a mere intellectual knowledge sufficed. But the issues are more complex. One major factor: God’s name represents His character and He has arranged it so that they go together, Isaiah 42:8. We share in the restoration of His name by doing what the Bible says:
1. By no longer taking His name in vain [empty]. When asked to read Scripture, wherever we see LORD or GOD (in all caps) we should restore IAUA [ee’-ah-oo”-ah] to those places where the Bible writers originally wrote His name.
2. Christ said, “Ye are my friends, if you do whatever I command you. Henceforth, I call you not servants.” Closer than friends in the end-time, God says, “Call Me Ishi (Husband)…call Me no more Baali” (Lord, Hosea 2:16, margin). A loving husband prefers being called by his name rather than by a word that means “Boss.”
3. We help to restore His name by sharing information on this topic. It is present truth for now.
God will save or deliver those who call upon His name. Many texts emphasizing God’s name have an end-time context. His name symbolizes the members of Deity and was changed by translators to a generic title, LORD or GOD. The 3rd commandment forbids taking His name empty or in vain.
The names of Daniel and his friends were changed in Babylon. The spirit of Babylon is behind the changing of Bible names. Many of the Hebrew prophets came with God’s name as a part of theirs. Elijah had a special role in turning Israel from the false worship of Baal, a name that meant “lord,” Hosea 2:16, margin.
Josephus and modern authorities say God’s name consists of four vowels; ee-ah-oo-ah, represented by ‘IAUA.’ God has pity for His name and will sanctify it, Ezekiel 36:23. Appeals to ignorance won’t do when we can know better. God’s name will be restored by an Elijah movement that results in 144,000 having God’s name as a seal or mark of protection for the time of trouble. They will be specially honored in heaven, Revelation 14:1-3.
You have just finished reading information on God’s name as the 1st seal, represented by the white horse, a message of truth for the end-times. It is intended to be considered on the 1st day of unleavened bread for Passover, but most people eat two good meals a day and Bible imagery like morning and evening sacrifices support the idea of a 2nd meal. The following information is intended for the 2nd meal and at the end is a link to the 2nd topic for the 2nd day of unleavened bread. May you be blessed by considering it…
Unleavened Bread–2nd Topic, Day 1: Babylon is Fallen: This includes Medical Care with Prescription Drugs, Now a Leading Cause of Illness, Disability and Death. The Bible’s last warning message in Rev 18:2-4 is a call to come out of fallen Babylon (confusion) and be not partakers of her sins (those making a living in a corrupt system) that we receive not of her plagues…for by her sorceries [Greek word, pharmakeia] were all nations deceived.”