Substitutes for God’s name in the New Testament

When reading an English Bible there is a little bit of Jewish history that is needed to understand a few things and this is one of them. When Messiah walked the earth, it had become the habit of the Jewish people to avoid God’s name. This is because they feared the pagans they had lived among  since the deportation to Babylon might start saying God’s name and therefore violate in the commandment.

“You shall not take the name of the LORD/YHWH your God in vain; for the LORD/YHWH will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain. Ex. 20:7 

The Jews had become very creative in their work arounds for this problem. Most English readers of the Bible have no idea what is going on. The average Christian doesn’t even know that God has a personal name. (His name is YHWH.) This habit of not using substitutes for God’s name was so universal that His personal name is never used is in the New Testament.

The Lord or Master

This one is so prevalent that it is on almost every page of every English Bible. The English Bibles uses this very same Jewish tradition of not speaking the name of the Lord “YHWH” but substitutes Adoni which means lord or master. The English has left a clue that they have done this by capitalizing all the letters in the LORD when the original Hebrew is YHWH. (See Also: God? What’s in a name?)

The Name

Ha Shem is Hebrew for “the Name” and is occasionally substituted for YHWH.

And those who went before and those who followed cried out, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Mark 11:9

And now I am no more in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to thee. Holy Father, keep them in thy name, which thou hast given me, that they may be one, even as we are one. John 17:11

Heaven

And he said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed upon the ground, Mark 4:26 Was the baptism of John from heaven or from men?”  Luke 20:4

The question was not whether John was some kind of angelic being but whether he was sent by God. This is why sometimes it is the kingdom of God and others it is the kingdom of heaven.

Another parable he put before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field; Matt. 13:24 

In this parable the son admits that he has sinned against God.

I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; Luke 15:18 

This use of Heaven as a substitute for God or YHWH has lead many to misunderstand “heaven.” Heaven strictly speaking is not the place where God lives. God is Omnipresent, and as such is everywhere throughout time and space at all times. Calling Him “Heaven” is to say that He is above and beyond what we can perceive. (See Also: What Happens When We Die? and God is Omnipresent)

The Power

And Jesus said, “I am; and you will see the Son of man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.” Mark 14:62 

This is a quote from the Psalms, where we can see the right hand belongs to the LORD or in Hebrew YHWH.

The LORD says to my lord: “Sit at my right hand, till I make your enemies your footstool.” Psa. 110:1 

FYI: They also called the temple in Jerusalem, “The Place” or “The Holy Place.”
For a tent was prepared, the outer one, in which were the lampstand and the table and the bread of the Presence; it is called the Holy Place. Heb. 9:2
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Good Eye, Bad Eye

22   “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is sound, your whole body will be full of light;  23 but if your eye is not sound, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! Matt. 6:22-23

34 Your eye is the lamp of your body; when your eye is sound, your whole body is full of light; but when it is not sound, your body is full of darkness. Luke 11:34

When translators do not know what a passage means they tend to woodenly translate word for word. In doing this, idioms or Hebraisms get lost in translation, and this is certainly one of those.

Quite simply in Hebrew thought, to have a good or sound eye is to be generous, and to have a bad eye is to be stingy.

In Christ

In the Harem by Fabio Fabbi  (1861 - 1946)

In the Harem by Fabio Fabbi (1861 – 1946)

Or in the harem to stay with our little allegory. One needs to understand that the harem is where all the women’s work was done, unlike what our western fantasies are. The cooking, cleaning, and laundry where all done in the harem and by the harem.

But if Christ is in you, although your bodies are dead because of sin, your spirits are alive because of righteousness. Rom. 8:10

This is a term only Paul uses. The inherited churches have made this out to mean salvation. As if it is the same thing; Messiah in you, and you in Messiah.

In Christ Jesus, then, I have reason to be proud of my work for God. Rom. 15:17

But it is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has commissioned us; 2Cor. 1:21

Back up the Bible Bus. Being in Messiah has something to do with that hated word, WORKS. After all isn’t a commission a JOB?

To be “in Messiah” is to follow His teachings, to be His student, His servant, to obey His words, to do as He did. Noah and his family had to be in the ark to be saved, the man-slayer had to be in the city of refuge to be safe from the avenger of blood. [Num. 35:6] To me “in Messiah” is not a metaphor or figure of speech, it is a reality. It is a job, a profession, ones life’s work.

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Col. 3:17

So what are we to do? Well! to start with, there are Ten Commandments, they were never suggestions.

Satyrs in the Bible

DionysusSatyr2Unlike the bad translation that gave us Unicorns in the Bible, the satyrs are actually there in the Hebrew. The Hebrew word sa’ir can mean goat or in these passages it means those mythological half man half goat creatures from the ancient religions that surrounded Israel.

So it is understandable that they like the rest of pagan mythology are condemned by the Bible.

So they shall no more slay their sacrifices for satyrs, after whom they play the harlot. This shall be a statute for ever to them throughout their generations. Lev. 17:7

. . . and he appointed his own priests for the high places, and for the satyrs, and for the calves which he had made. 2Chr. 11:15

Then we come upon what at first glance seems a very strange Isaiah passages. In an oracle concerning Babylon’s demise. Isaiah seems to be treating these mythological creatures as if they were real. This is a cultural misunderstanding.

But wild beasts will lie down there, and its houses will be full of howling creatures; there ostriches will dwell, and there satyrs will dance. Is. 13:21

The satyrs that dance is a reference to the constellation we call the little dipper. The ancients called this constellation the goats and goat-herder or Pan and the satyrs, because to them these stars danced around the Northstar every night. Isaiah is chiding Babylon’s pride by saying in a very poetic manner is that when great Babylon is gone the stars will still turn in their place.

No Other Gods

Amoureox dans la palmeraie, claire de luneOne of the many problems with the post-modern church’s teachings is that they excuse putting things before God. Sometimes they even encourage it. They no longer teach truth to error. Are we faithful brides to our Lord or are we whores?

They teach that if good things happen to one then God is blessing, if bad things happen it is Satan’s fault. There is no responsibility for ones own condition.

That’s not exactly what the Word says.

25   Therefore, putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.  26 Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,  27 and give no opportunity to the devil.  28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his hands, so that he may be able to give to those in need.  29 Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for edifying, as fits the occasion, that it may impart grace to those who hear.  30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, in whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.  31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, with all malice,  32 and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. Eph. 4:25-32

Holding to false teachings, being angry, not working for what our grandparents called an honest living. All these things grieve the Spirit and give opportunity to the devil.

If Satan has an opportunity he will surely take it. If we entertain false teachings, false prophecy, or false beliefs, then we leave ourselves open to attack.

“. . . and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:32

All lies come from Satan. So if your belief is in falsehoods you are following Satan and not following God. Especially if those lies are of a religious nature. In a conversation Messiah had with the Pharisees, he told these teachers of the Bible that they were not teaching truth.

You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. John 8:44

The devil has not changed his stripes. He works the same way he did back then. So how is our faith? Is it Biblical? Or is it the Traditions of men?

There are Ten Commandments they were not suggestions. They are the “Perfect Will of God.”

It all comes down to That very first commandment.

1   And God spoke all these words, saying,  2 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 3   “You shall have no other gods before me. Ex. 20:1-3

What are we putting before God?

See Also: The Pagan Origins of Christmas

Cherethites

Cherethites/Kerethites seems to not be an actual tribal name, for it is a paronomasia, the Hebrew karat means to cut off.  Ezekiel puts them in the same group as the Philistines that stand against God’s people and will be destroyed. So I will cut off the cut off ones.

. . . therefore thus says the Lord GOD, Behold, I will stretch out my hand against the Philistines, and I will cut off the Cherethites, and destroy the rest of the seacoast. Ezek. 25:16

Woe to you inhabitants of the seacoast, you nation of the Cherethites! The word of the LORD is against you, O Canaan, land of the Philistines; and I will destroy you till no inhabitant is left. Zeph. 2:5 

What We Know

The Kerethites are not mentioned very often. When the Bible first introduces them they are in the Negev, which is a dessert in eastern Egypt  that borders Modern Israel.

We had made a raid upon the Negeb of the Cherethites and upon that which belongs to Judah and upon the Negeb of Caleb; and we burned Ziklag with fire.” 1Sam. 30:14

They become a conquered people serving David.

. . . and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was over the Cherethites and the Pelethites; and David’s sons were priests. 2Sam. 8:18

. . . and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was over the Cherethites and the Pelethites; and David’s sons were the chief officials in the service of the king. 1Chr. 18:17

And all his servants passed by him; and all the Cherethites, and all the Pelethites, and all the six hundred Gittites who had followed him from Gath, passed on before the king. 2Sam. 15:18

Mercernaries

These Kerethites make up part of David and Solomon’s MightyMen.

And there went out after Abishai, Joab and the Cherethites and the Pelethites, and all the mighty men; they went out from Jerusalem to pursue Sheba the son of Bichri. 2Sam. 20:7

Now Joab was in command of all the army of Israel; and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was in command of the Cherethites and the Pelethites; 2Sam. 20:23 

So Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites and the Pelethites, went down and caused Solomon to ride on King David’s mule, and brought him to Gihon. 1Kings 1:38 

. . . and the king has sent with him Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites and the Pelethites; and they have caused him to ride on the king’s mule; 1Kings 1:44

FYI: There is possibility that the Carians were identical to the Cherethites. If this is the case, then it appears that these mercenaries were loyal to the house of David and supported Joash over  Athaliah

But in the seventh year Jehoiada sent and brought the captains of the Carites and of the guards, and had them come to him in the house of the LORD; and he made a covenant with them and put them under oath in the house of the LORD, and he showed them the king’s son. 2Kings 11:4 

And he took the captains, the Carites, the guards, and all the people of the land; and they brought the king down from the house of the LORD, marching through the gate of the guards to the king’s house. And he took his seat on the throne of the kings. 2Kings 11:19 

So the question is, if they were loyal to the house of David why does Ezekiel’s prophecy but them in the same group as the Philistines? Especially since both groups had disappeared from the historic record. No one knows.

Faith

What is Faith?

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Heb. 11:1 

We’ve all heard the charlatan healers claim that the reason they cannot heal is because the sick person’s faith is not strong enough. However healing is not what our faith is primarily for. For it is a faith in things NOT seen.

We tend to think that faith is a feeling. However faith is the assurance of the things we hope for. We are as sure of the things of God, as we are that the chair will hold us up, that gravity will keep out cup on the table, and the sun will rise in the east and set in the west.

We are sure that Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth is the promised Messiah. We are sure of our salvation. We are sure of new and incorruptible bodies. We are sure that we will present ourselves before the judgment Throne of God with Messiah’s righteousness imputed to us, that we come under no condemnation.

The things unseen are of the kingdom of Messiah, it is all around us, the armies of His heavenly host in battle with the forces of evil.

. . . because we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen; for the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. 2Cor. 4:18

What we see is old Jerusalem the one of bricks and stone, but out hope, our faith is in New Jerusalem, the Jerusalem that is above and for now is unseen.

Let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth, if I do not remember you, if I do not set Jerusalem above my highest joy! Psa. 137:6

But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother. Gal. 4:26

He who conquers, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God; never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem which comes down from my God out of heaven, and my own new name. Rev. 3:12

We watch as friends and family die. Their bodies seem dead and cold. But our faith is that we will have the victory over sin and death. It is ours, we just can’t see it. [See Also: What Happens when we Die?]

 

See Also: Hope