Yeshua or Yahushua

yeshua jesusNow that we know the Hebrew name of Jesus is Yeshua you would think the study would be done… unfortunately, there are many out there who may have good intentions but they are causing a lot of confusion about His name.

It seems that no matter where you go, when you are talking with a group of Messianics or those who are part of the Hebrew Roots movement there will inevitably be someone who is pushing for the use of the name YAHushua instead of Yeshua.

I know for your average person this seems petty, or perhaps even a bit ridiculous but for the people who believe in the “sacred name” teachings it is a matter of salvation. They have been taught that if you do not say His name properly (and there are many variations of how it is supposed to be said) you are not saved because you are calling on the wrong name.

It is sad that those who know the least are also those who feel the need to make the most noise about their beliefs.

The goal here is to equip you with the understanding of where they are coming from and give you a resource to help them see where the faulty teachings lie. 

The YAHushua pronunciation is founded on shoddy scholarship at best

1. It is based on the belief that Jesus’ Hebrew name must have “Yah” in it based on John 5:43.

I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, you will receive him.

As you can see they begin with a poor understanding of what it means to “come in someone’s name.” They believe that in order to come in someone’s name you must have their name in your name… that logic immediately breaks down when you apply it to anyone who spoke for God without a Yah in their name or when you apply it to any of Jesus’ apostles since none of them felt the need to change their names to match up with His.

To “come in the name of the Father” means to come as His representative and by His authority. It does not mean to be named after Him.

2. A lesson in Hebrew pronunciation: (if this gets to be too much just read the first point and skip the rest)

The proponents of the YAHushua form claim that the Messiah’s name was the same as Joshua’s, written “Yod-Hey-Vav-Shin-Vav-Ayin” or “Yod-Hey-Vav-Shin-Ayin” (Strong’s #3091 ). The only problem is that neither of these spellings of Joshua’s name can possibly be pronounced “YAHushua.”

The technical stuff: The third letter in Joshua’s name is the letter “vav” and a “vav” cannot be silent.

Vav must be pronounced as either a “v” or an “o” or an “u.” In the case of Joshua, it takes an “o” sound, giving us “Ye-ho-SHU-a.” Strong’s confirms this pronunciation.

In order to get the pronunciation of YAHushua the spelling would have to be Yod-Hey-(some sort of silent space holder Vav to break apart the words for “proper” pronunciation)-Shin-Vav-Ayin. Needless to say this spelling is not found anywhere in the Scriptures.

3. Yeshua (Jesus), is the shortened version of Yehoshua (Joshua). For example, in modern English, we have people who are named both John and Jonathan. The name John is related to Jonathan and many people who are named Jonathan will go by the shortened “John.” So, while the names are related they are 2 separate and distinct names.

Both the names Yeshua and Yehoshua are clearly found and used in the Scriptures. The reality of both names is clearly attested to and is not even a matter of debate among those who are able to read, write and speak the Hebrew language.

4. This is where the conspiracy theorists begin: They claim that while it is true that their spelling of YAHushua cannot be found in the scriptures it is actually the result of a “Jewish conspiracy to hide the true name of God.

Unfortunately for the conspiracy theorists, archeology has made it clear that there were many people named both Yehoshua (Joshua) and the shortened form Yeshua (Jesus) during 2nd temple period. There is no record anywhere of anybody being named YAHushua or any of the other proposed variations.

Ultimately this is a non-issue.

Based on scholarship and sound Hebrew teaching there is no question that the name is Yeshua and not Yahushua.

The only reason I feel the need to bring it up is because for those who hold to the sacred name teachings it is a matter of salvation and a very divisive issue. Please, be patient but firm with those who hold to these teachings. They may not like it but we cannot allow these deceptions to spread any further because false teachings like these cause our genuine scholarship to be called into question through guilt by association.

Question: Have you run into anyone who insists on a false variation of Yeshua? How did you handle it and how did they respond? You can leave a comment by clicking here.