The Name Above All Names
In the days of John the Baptist and the Son of God, the
preserved language of the devout Jews was Hebrew. So, when
the angel Gabriel brought the good news to the Hebrew virgin,
in English), that she would give birth to
the Savior of the world, and told her what His name would
be, what language do you suppose he spoke? Hebrew, of course!
And certainly Miriam
in English) named
the child just as the angel had commanded them — Yahshua
In Matthew 1:21, your Bible probably reads, “… and
you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people
from their sins.” But the name Jesus is a modern English
adaptation of the Greek name, Iesous, which is itself a
corruption of the original Hebrew name Yahshua. The name
Jesus or Iesous has no meaning of its own, but the Hebrew
name Yahshua literally means Yahweh’s Salvation,
which makes sense out of what the angel said in Matthew
1:21, “…you shall call His name Yahshua [Yahweh’s
Salvation], for He shall save His people from their sins.”
If you look in an old King James Bible, you will find the
name Jesus in these two passages:
Which also our fathers that came after brought in with
Jesus into the possession of the Gentiles, whom God drave
out before the face of our fathers, unto the days of David?
(Acts 7:45, KJV)
For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward
have spoken of another day. (Hebrews 4:8, KJV)
However, if you look in any modern Bible, including more
recently printed King James Bibles, you will find that in
place of the name Jesus they use the name Joshua, for in
the context it is clear that it is speaking there of Moses’
successor and not the Son of God. But in the Greek manuscript
the name in both of these verses is Iesous.
You see, Joshua is the popular English transliteration of
the Hebrew name Yahshua. Joshua of the Old Testament had
the same name as the One called Jesus in the New Testament,
for Joshua was the prophetic forerunner of the Son of God,
bringing Israel into the Promised Land and leading them
to victory over their enemies. But since the translators
obviously know this fact, why do they only translate Iesous
as Joshua in these two verses, and as Jesus everywhere else?
The fact is, the name of God’s Son was not even pronounced
as “Jesus” in English until the 16th century,
simply because there was no “J” sound or letter
in English until then. The modern letter “J”
developed from the letter “I” which began to
be written with a “tail” when it appeared as
the first letter in a word. So in old English the name now
written as Jesus was actually written and pronounced much
like the original Greek Iesous. Eventually the hard “J”
sound crept into the English language to accompany the different
way of writing the initial “I” in the name.
You may also find it interesting that in Acts 26:14-15,
it says that the apostle Paul heard the name of the Son
of God pronounced “in the Hebrew tongue” by
the Son of God Himself, so he certainly didn’t hear
the Greek name Iesous or the English name Jesus, but rather
the Hebrew name, the name above all names, Yahshua.
Yah is the personal name of God, and shua is from a Hebrew root word that means "to save." God identified Himself to Moses as YAH (meaning
"I AM") in Exodus 3:14, as in Psalm 68:4 ("whose name is Yah"), and as most familiar in the word Halleluyah ("Praise Yah"). And in John 5:43
and 17:11, Yahshua says that He came in His Father's name, "the name which You have given Me" (NASB), so it is not surprising that the Father's
name would be incorporated into the Son's name, Yahshua.
Compact Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary (Oxford University Press, 1971), pp. 1496,1507.
Philippians 2:9; Acts 4:12