By Rodney Bowen
"One of the fundamental characteristics of Hebrew thought is the significance attached to a persons name. The name is looked upon as a kind of description of the owner's personality. A mans name and nature are indissolubly linked"
We all know the significance of people and place names in the Bible, there are countless examples where the connection between a person's name and nature are clearly seen.
The clash between Nabal (meaning 'fool') and David in 1st Samuel chapter 25 shows Nabal as an extremely 'foolish' person, so we see here the connection between a persons name and nature.
In Genesis 13 we read of the separation of Abram and Lot. They both stood between Bethel (meaning 'house of God/or El') and Hai (meaning 'ruin') and chose their future dwelling places. Lot chose the easy life around Sodom, to do this he had to pass through the city of Hai, so we see Lot chose the path of 'ruin' and we all know the result of Lot's decision. Abram chose the uphill slog to Bethel, the path that led to the 'house of El' and thrived, so we see the connection between a place name and the nature of the path of life the individuals took.
We know our Father's Name is 'Yahweh' meaning "He Will Be" because He tells us in Exodus 3:13-15, but how does this Name describe The Father and His character?
This Question is answered in the book 'Story of the Bible': "The name 'Yahweh' is the covenant name of God first said when He was about to save His people. It reveals God as a loving Father who will extend Himself to bring others into His great family and make them sons and daughters of God. It shows Him as a merciful saviour who will save His people eternally in order that He might reveal His glory in them."
Our Fathers self proclaimed name then shows His purpose and proclaims His love for those that follow Him, His people.
'Yahweh' or "He Will Be" showed the Israelites that He would save them from the Egyptian oppressors, and also that in the future; "He Will Be ('Yahweh') the Powerful Ones ('Elohim') of your fathers, the Powerful Ones of Abraham, the Powerful Ones of Isaac, the Powerful Ones of Jacob." Exodus 3:15 - meaning that He would reveal Himself in the Seed of these three fathers, and that this seed (Christ and the Saints) would be changed into immortal Elohim and live forever as His sons and daughters. We know that this hope of the Israelites is also our hope; Acts 15:14 states "Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles to take out a people for His name" Galatians 3:26-29 "For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus according to the promise."
So what does the Yahweh Name then mean to us? It shows us that 'He Will Be' revealed in a multitude of faithful men and woman, who having put on the name of Jesus Christ through belief and baptism and through living their lives acceptably in total dedication to the Father, will be shown His grace and given immortal life. They will be incorporated into Yahweh's immortal family, glorifying Him evermore.
Yahweh 'He Will Be' then shows God as a loving Father, one who will save those who put their trust in Him, it is His promise to us. This we must keep at the forefront of our minds. In Exodus 3:15 we see that His Name was to be for a 'memorial' - something to be remembered, recollected, or meditated upon as the Hebrew word 'zeker' means. Yahweh's plan, purpose and character were to be constantly thought upon. Malachi tells us of those that did meditate upon Yahweh's Name: "Then they that feared Yahweh spake often one to another, and Yahweh hearkened and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for them that feared Yahweh and that thought upon His Name" Exodus 3:16. Each one of us through the act of baptism has shown we believe in Jesus the Anointed and the things concerning the Kingdom of God. This Kingdom age is our hope, it is what we look toward - our vision. This hope finds expression in our Fathers Name, 'Yahweh', so we can say that the whole teaching of the bible, even the whole existence of this world can be summarized in this one name Yahweh - 'He Will Be'.
Those that don't believe correctly the truth concerning Jesus and the things of the Kingdom don't know Yahweh. There are many different religious denominations today that use the Divine Name some that even call themselves by His Name (Jehovah's witnesses, Yahweh congregations etc), but they use it without understanding the truth it teaches or its importance. They are therefore ignorant of the things of God, they don't understand the purpose of Yahweh on this earth and so don't know Him or His son Jesus the Christ. We are so very privileged to have been called to Yahweh's service, we wait for the return of Jesus when God willing we will be accepted into Yahweh's family to glorify Him eternally. We long for it and so we are like those whom Malachi describes in Malachi 3:16-17;
"Then they that feared Yahweh spake often one to another, and Yahweh hearkened and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for them that feared Yahweh and that thought upon His Name. And they shall be mine saith Yahweh of Hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels, and I will spare them as a man spareth his own son that serveth him." Let us have faith in Yahweh's purpose and grace, then as Jeremiah shows we will receive Divine blessing;
"Blessed is the man that trusteth in Yahweh, and whose hope Yahweh is"