WHY NOT JAHVES or YAHWEHS WITNESSES?
I used to find the overuse of God’s name at the Kingdom Hall irritating. In particular, one brother must have used "Jehovah" twenty-plus times whenever he said the opening or closing prayer to any meeting.
Why did this bother me? Two reasons:
- It is absolutely NOT the right way of saying God’s name. We may never know whether this is Jah’ve or Yahweh but it’s definitely not Jehovah. The best the Society can claim is that it is the traditional pronunciation. The syllables E-O-A were to remind the reader to use Adonai, meaning Lord.
- As it was our heavenly Father we were talking to, it always worried me that the overuse of the wrong name would upset Him.
To illustrate. Let’s say that our benefactor’s name is Sean (pronounced Shawn). Let’s also say that we didn’t know how to pronounce it correctly, so we read it as See-Ann. Then as time goes by we realize this is wrong and that we should be thanking our benefactor Shawn, not See-Ann. If we know this and continue referring to him as See-Ann, wouldn’t that piss him off?
Now the WTS has been johnny-on-the-spot when it comes to other changes. You can get disfellowshipped for all kinds of things that the WTS has now determined to be wrong. Take smoking cigarettes. Up til 1972 or so it was frowned upon, then it becomes a disfellowshipping offence. Why isn’t the abuse of the name Jehovah a disfellowshipping offence when Jah’ve and Yahweh are more appropriate.
Isn’t it worse to knowingly call God by the wrong name than smoke a couple of ciggies?
Glen James, who once was deleted.
PS - Had a very nice time at the Portland Oregon meet-up yesterday. Great to meet you all and I look forward to seeing you again next month!
I agree with you, Glen. Seems to border on 'taking God's name in vain' There always seems to be someone in the congregation who polishes his spirituality by using the name of God repeatedly in prayers.....or do they think they get points for the number of times it is mentioned?
How many times did Jesus call his father by name in front of other people???
from the same organisation that shows Jesus looking like a very white, middle-class, American instead of Jewish ...
Hey, Glen, it was good to meet you yesterday!
do they think they get points for the number of times it is mentioned?
In my late teens I was a janitor as a private school, and on one of my daily trips through the extensive and eclectic library I happened to notice a book about spells and witchcraft. Of course, as a good little JW I should have immediately turned away, but curiousity got the better of me. Was I ever surprised to find that "jehovah" was used very frequently in both "white" and "black" incantations. Compare that with the superstitions that developed in the Jewish community about the use of the Name...I'd say that, at least subliminally, some JWs do use Jehovah to "get points."
Which may also play in to your question, Glen. Perhaps the WTSs biggest obstacle to switching over to "Yahweh" is the fascination and preoccupation with "Jehovah," especially in the sense of destiny and peculiarity associated with the name Jehovah's Witnesses.
They can't change now ... it's their 'brand name'
Since the JWs invented their own bible, they have put the word Jehovah on the lips of Christ. I sincerely doubt he ever said it. It not being invented 'till way, way after is death. And whatever was the pronounciation of the god of Isreal, I doubt he said that either, being it was verboten among the Jews.
And when you get right down to the nub of things, the name Jehovah's Witnesses was foisted upon the organization by a drunken megalomaniac. I still believe there's a pun in the fact that Rutherford died of rectal cancer, but for the life of me I can't find it.
According to http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08329a.htm "the word Jehovah dates
only from the year 1520 (cf. Hastings, "Dictionary of the Bible", II,
1899, p. 199: Gesenius-Buhl, "Handwörterbuch", 13th ed., 1899, p.
311). Drusius (loc. cit., 344) represents Peter Galatinus as the
inventor of the word Jehovah, and Fagius as it propagator in the
world of scholars and commentators. But the writers of the sixteenth
century, Catholic and Protestant (e.g. Cajetan and Théodore de Bèze),
are perfectly familiar with the word. Galatinus himself ("Areana
cathol. veritatis", I, Bari, 1516, a, p. 77) represents the form as
known and received in his time. Besides, Drusius (loc. cit., 351)
discovered it in Porchetus, a theologian of the fourteenth century.
Finally, the word is found even in the "Pugio fidei" of Raymund
Martin, a work written about 1270 (ed. Paris, 1651, pt. III, dist.
ii, cap. iii, p. 448, and Note, p. 745). Probably the introduction of
the name Jehovah antedates even R. Martin."
The word seems to come via the German monasteries where YHWH was
written JHVH (J is Y in German and W becomes V). Because of the ban
from Leviticus 24:16: "And he that blasphemeth the name of the Lord,
dying let him die" - there was a ban in Biblical Times from
pronouncing the tetragrammaton, and the word Adonai, (=Lord) was read
whenever YHWH was in the text. In the late Middle Agecs the vowels
of AdOnAi were added (in Germany( to the Tetragrammaton JHVH to make
JaHoVaH = Jahovah, later Anglicised to Jehovah.
As an Elohim (composite male and female) God of YH (Yah, Yahu, Yaa,
Yaw or Yahw) and the Goddess HWH - we get the composite name Yahweh
(YH'HWH or YHWH).
If you say Jehovah's Witnesses very quickly you get Joe's Witnesses, which is closer to the truth.
As for what Jesus said? When he was asked to pray it was Our Father in heaven, not Jehovah or even Jah.
Good to see you too, onacruise!
If you really wanna have some fun, go to a kingdom hall and say yahweh over and over and over and over again..in fact if you are anywhere near to being booted if yoiu are still a member, or want to get your self deleted, say the prayer with yahweh like a kabiliion times, truist me on this. My soon to be ex used to get seriously ticked whenever I said yawheh and each time I said it she would say, NO JEHOVAH! and I finally said, hey I dont correct you when you say jehovah so dont correct me when I say the more correct Yahweh.,...
also it is a myth that the pronounciation was lost. Hebrew is phonetic..all of the rabbis that I have ever spoken to have said it is Yih Yah according the the letters. Which then get anglicized as Yahweh cause YihYah is too hard for anglos to speak, mostly cause they cant say anything near to the original language of the people in question...
also supposedly by jesus time he had to RESTORE the use of the name, but it was also SUPPOSEDLY in the greek translation thingy...But then he supposedly taught his disciples his name but it appears no where in the greek, except as place names and in the halleluJEHOVAH statement etc ad naseum. But again I say just say yahweh around them a lot..tell them you are hebrew or jew or speaking such and know talmud (which tells us TO speak the name Yahweh and that you know TORAH in original language and MISHNA which also says to use the name...nmow since they dont speak hebrew they wont know whether you are telling the truth or not...
better yet start speaking gibberish, get a copy of mishna and talmud and other things like torah, or even a copy of lord of the rings written in french or some junk and they wont know then ramble as if you are speaking in the other langauge and say, see right there it says in the original hebrew, in mishna to say Yahweh, or better yet YihYah..that will confuse the heck out of them.....in fact I think I might go to the kingdom hall this weekend.....
The WTS likes Jehovah. They will say that its not that important to pronounce it correctly as long as you use it as oppose to other belief systems that refer to the almighty as 'Lord' etc.They aint going to change it now!