Monday, 9 June 2014

The Name Of God: A Big Problem

As we know, the Catholic Bible, which is normally the King James' version, bring pieces that tell us that the name of our god is God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.
Exodus 3:15
And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, the Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.
King James, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob

Exodus 6:3
And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name Jehovah was I not known to them.
King James, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob

In the so few selected passages above, we already find confusion,  since God Himself would have said that His name is actually Jehovah.

We understand that all three males were Jewish (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob), what then makes us sure that if someone knows the name of our god, it can only be The Jews, and, thanks God, they are still alive these days. 

Adonai, Elohim, and El Shaddai are names accepted by the Jews as designations for the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
The most important of God's Names is the four-letter Name represented by the Hebrew letters Yod-Heh-Vav-Heh (YHVH).
 It is often referred to as the Ineffable Name, the Unutterable Name or the Distinctive Name. Linguistically, it is related to the Hebrew root Heh-Yod-Heh (to be), and reflects the fact that God's existence is eternal. In scripture, this Name is used when discussing God's relation with human beings, and when emphasizing his qualities of lovingkindness and mercy. It is frequently shortened to Yah (Yod-Heh), Yahu or Yeho (Yod-Heh-Vav), especially when used in combination with names or phrases, as in Yehoshua (Joshua, meaning "the Lord is my Salvation"), Eliyahu (Elijah, meaning "my God is the Lord"), and Halleluyah ("praise the Lord"). 
(The Jews, names of our god)

With the Temple destroyed and the prohibition on pronouncing The Name outside of the Temple, pronunciation of the Name fell into disuse. Scholars passed down knowledge of the correct pronunciation of YHVH for many generations, but eventually the correct pronunciation was lost, and we no longer know it with any certainty. We do not know what vowels were used, or even whether the Vav in the Name was a vowel or a consonant. See Hebrew Alphabet for more information about the difficulties in pronouncing Hebrew. Some religious scholars suggest that the Name was pronounced "Yahweh," but others do not find this pronunciation particularly persuasive.
Some Christian scholars render the four-letter Name as "Jehovah," but this pronunciation is particularly unlikely. The word "Jehovah" comes from the fact that ancient Jewish texts used to put the vowels of the Name "Adonai" (the usual substitute for YHVH) under the consonants of YHVH to remind people not to pronounce YHVH as written. A sixteenth century German Christian scribe, while transliterating the Bible into Latin for the Pope, wrote the Name out as it appeared in his texts, with the consonants of YHVH and the vowels of Adonai, and came up with the word JeHoVaH, and the name stuck.
 (The Jews, names of our god)

In Judaism God has several names. The most important name of God is the Tetragrammaton, YHVH. Because Jews considered it sinful to pronounce, the correct pronunciation of this name was forgotten — the original Hebrew texts only included consonants. Some conjecture that it was pronounced "Yahweh". The Hebrew letters are named Yod-Heh-Vav-Heh.
Jews also call God Adonai, or "my Lord." Since pronouncing YHVH is considered sinful, Jews would use Adonai instead in prayers. When the Masoretes added vowel pointings to the text of the Tanach in the first century CE they gave the word YHVH the vowels of Adonai, to remind the reader to say Adonai instead. Many Christian bible translators misinterpreted this to mean that God's name was Jehovah, which is the result of combining Adonai's vowels with YHVH's consonants, written using Latin orthography in which "J" is prnounced as the English "Y."
All denominations of Judaism teach that the four letter name of God, YHVH, is forbidden to be uttered except by the High Priest, in the Temple. Since the Temple in Jerusalem is no longer extant, this name is never pronounced in religious rituals by Jews. Orthodox Jews never pronounce it for any reason. Some non-Orthodox Jews are willing to pronounce it, but for educational purposes only, and never in causal conversation or in prayer. Instead of pronouncing YHVH during prayer, Jews say "Adonai". Note that, in Israel, observant Jews would also often use the word "shmo" ("shem shelo", His name, literally the name that is of Him) during conversations for similar purpose.
Jews often build "fences" around the basic laws, so that there is no chance that the main law will ever be broken. As such, it is common Jewish practice among to restrict the use of the word "Adonai" to prayer only. In conversation many Jewish people will call God "HaShem", which is Hebrew for "the Name". Many Jews also write "G-d" instead of "God". While these substitutions are by no means required by Judaism (only the Hebrew name, not the English, is holy), they do it to remind themselves of the holiness attached to God's name.
English translations of the Bible generally render YHVH as "LORD" (in small capitals), and Adonai as "Lord" (in normal case). Scholars disagree as to the meaning of the name Yahweh - many believe it means something like "I am the One Who Is," or "I am that I am, and I cause what is."

It seems to us that this is simply confusion, so that we decided for ignoring this piece of information and use what we know to be true for sure about our god.


Orthodox Prayer

"Blessed are You the God of our forefathers, God of Abraham, God of Isaac and God of Jacob, the great mighty God who bestows beneficial kindness and creates all, who recalls the kindness of the patriarchs and brings a redeemer to their children’s children, for his Name’s sake, with love.  O King, Helper, Saviour and Shield, Blessed are You - the Shield of Abraham."

Conservative Prayer

"Praised are you, Lord our God and God of our Ancestors, God of Abraham, of Isaac and of Jacob, great, mighty, awesome, exalted God who bestows loving kindness, Creator of all. You remember the pious deeds of our ancestors and will send a redeemer to their children's children because of Your loving nature."

NB: In some Conservative congregations, the matriarchs (Sarah, Rebecca, Leah and Rachel) are added as in the Progressive Prayer.

Progressive Prayer

"Blessed are You the God of our forefathers and mothers, God of Abraham, God of Isaac and God of Jacob, God of Sarah, God of Rebecca, God of Leah and God of Rachel, the great mighty God who bestows beneficial kindness and creates all, who recalls the kindness of the patriarchs and matriarchs and brings a redeemer to their children’s children, for God’s Name’s sake, with love.  O Ruler, Helper, Saviour and Shield, Blessed are You - the Shield of Abraham and the helper of Sarah."

God Himself seems to create a reference for who He is : He is the god who has been seen face-to-face by Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

That does make a lot of sense because we have several gods in human kind and to select the right one we do have to tell who on earth, of our kind, knows Him personally and with no mistake.

Since Jesus Christ's time, however, God seems to never have appeared in a physical shape to us anymore.

We must accept then that those words of Jesus Christ, which imply that he becomes our food and our drink, mean that direct communication is over.

How to pick the right human beings, like those who spoke to the same god we refer and adore, is a bit of a problem in modern days as well, but God said we can tell who is His messenger from who is not by analyzing their miracles, such as their instructions, prophecies or healings.

The name of our god is paramount because, first of all, we should not say it in vain (Vain, name of God):

Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

Things get really complex at this stage because if the name of our god is God and we say oh, my god! while we are having intimacies with someone else, for instance, how can we tell if we have sinned or not?

We have invented this story, of God with lower case g and God with upper case g, not God.

If God bothered about what language we spoke, then He would only serve the Jews when they speak their original language, is it not?

God has to only bother about our feelings, tones and actions instead.

God will obviously not be analyzing our speech and measuring whether the god we said there was in lower or upper case, so that we should never say god in any situation that does not really demand that.

Because we have created several gods in human kind, we must create a human anchor for our god, so that saying God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob does sound like the proper thing to do. 

The Empire then chooses to designate our god this way.




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