How to call God’s Name?

Cristian Pãduraru

In the Old Testament, the two most common names for God are Elohim and Yahweh. The word Yahweh appears nearly 7000 times in the O.T.! Now I realize what some of you are thinking: “If it’s so common, how come I’ve never seen Yahweh in my Old Testament?”

Well, that’s because of a translation convention. I would wager that the foreword to your Bible explains that the word YHWH, the consonants for Yahweh, is rendered LORD (all capital letters). The Hebrew letters yod-heth-waw-heth are also called the Tetragrammaton (Greek for four letters).

Of course such a convention is confusing, first because LORD isn’t a translation of Yahweh at all, and secondly because there is already a word for Lord, Adonai. I admit that when I read the Bible, I easily miss the subtle distinction between LORD and Lord. So what’s the origin of this odd convention?

Over the course…

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