I have been studying out the name of Jesus and I have some questions. I know that Joseph and Mary were told by God to name our Savior Jesus, but I wanted to go a little deeper. I was surprised at what I discovered. In Exodus 6:2, the Hebrew name that was revealed to Moses was YAH or YAHU, which means he is YAH. Many Hebrew names in the Bible incorporated the name YAHU, including our Savior's name that he was known by in the first century (YAHUHUAH or YESHUAH or YAH is Salvation). A few centuries after YAHUSHUAH his name gradually changed to Je-Zeus Khristos. Because many of the new converts were once worshippers of the sun god Zeus, and through the influence of Constantine the Great, who before converting to Christianity was a Zeus worshipper, the pronunciation of the name Y'SHUAH became YeZeus. Thus, you have the infiltration of a pagan religion into Christianity, revealing itself in the Savior's name. The pagan name Zeus was applied to their new Messiah YAHUSHUAH, which became YeZeus? or Je-Zeus, translated today as Jesus. Is my research correct, and if it is, why don't we start using his real name (Y'SHUAH) when referencing the Savior? When we say "Jesus," does that translate to "I AM is Zeus"? -- Chris Hayes (Dayton, Ohio)

Here are my thoughts, for that they are worth:

* Exodus 6:3 is the passage I believe you are referring to, a classic text for the study of the names of God. El Shaddai (God Almighty) is the first name for God, followed by YHVH (YHWH) -- not Yah or Yahu, as you claim. It is true that many OT names in 'yahu (Eliyahu, or Elihah, for example), but this is not the word appearing in Exodus 6:3.
* Iesous is simply the Greek form of Yeshua/Yoshua/Hoshea. It is completely unrelated to Zeus, the chief of the gods in the Greek pantheon.
* In Greek, incidentally, Zeus and Iesous don't even sound remotely alike! That confusion could only have been generated among persons speculating without knowledge of Greek pronunciation.
* Iesous was used in the earliest manuscript copies in our possession (from the 100s AD), so it is simply not true that Constantine, who lived in the 300s, caused his name to be changed.
* By the way, Zeus was not the sun god; it was Apollos.
* Yeshua is the Aramaic form of Jesus' name. I suppose there is no harm in calling him Yeshua. But where do we draw the line? What about Mariam and Yosef, his parents? And Petros, Paulos, Matthaios, and the other apostles? Should we now call God Yahveh, or Yahweh, or Theos? Is it Jerusalem, or Yerushalayim? I think you see where this leads...

This article is copyrighted and is for private use and study only. © 2005. Reprints or public distribution is prohibited without the express consent of Douglas Jacoby.