Are YOU taking God's Name in Vain?

How casually it trips off the tongue - - "HalleLUyuh!" - - It flows as intended praise - - "Praise GOD! - - Glory to His Name!"

But is it?

In Judaism, the correct pronunciation of the actual name of God was forgotten over 2000 years ago.  Thus, His name is not pronounced in order that it not be profaned or taken "in vain" (in one sense of the word).  The Hebrew word translated "vain" is shav and means emptiness, vanity, falsehood, nothingness, worthlessness.  So you can see why the Creator does not take "in vain" it lightly.

When it is written in Hebrew, it is the four letters yod, heh, vav, heh ().  In English, it is usually written YHWH or YHVH and pronounced Yahweh or Yahveh (but not pronounced by observant Jews).

A shorter version of the Name is Yah, which appears in the Hebrew text of the Bible four times.  It's the first syllable of yod, heh, vav, heh, and is incorporated into the Hebrew word hallelu-jah.  The "j" is pronounced as a "y" because of its Saxon/Germanic background.

When "hallelu-jah" is used in a sense of "Well, ain't that great, praise God," it is completely inappropriate.  The Hebrew root word is "halal" and means "shout praises," and "lu" is second person masculine plural.  So, "hallelu-jah" is literally a command for everyone present to shout praises to Yah.

And then there's the word (I don't even want to call it a "name") "jehovah."  That is such an adulteration of God's name that I feel it should be ripped from every book it is printed in (YES, including Bibles)!

We so lightly say, "halleLUyuh" and somehow lightly say GOD'S NAME.  Is it too much trouble to say YAH instead of "yuh"??  Correctly, it should be said, "HAL-lelu-YAH!" with the accent on the first and last syllables.  "Everyone SHOUT PRAISES to YAH!"  It is supposed to be a call to worship!  Check out the four times it is used in only one chapter of the book of Revelation (poorly transliterated in the KJV, because the Greek gives it the breath sound of the initial "h" but the translators didn't bother to do that).

If you just want to say "Praise God" in Hebrew because of a blessing you have received, "Baruch HaShem" is appropriate (though not biblical, just Jewish).  Literally, it means "Bless the Name."  Or you could say "Baruch Hu," which means "Bless Him."  Still better (probably) would be "Baruch Adonai" (literally, Bless the Lord), "Baruch Elohim" (Bless the God of Many Powers"), or even "Baruch Yah" (Bless Yah).

By the way, I've hyphenated it here because when Hallelu-Yah appears in the Hebrew Bible (the Tanakh or "Old" Testament), it's ALWAYS either two words or hypenated.  Didn't know that, didya?


THE Name -- The ONLY Name UNDER HEAVEN given among men whereby we must be saved!


Since the Bible was written by, to, and for the People of God (Hebrews,
the physical and spiritual descendants of Abraham), you may be interested is
being able to read it the way it was intended to be read by the Author
and the writers - with an understanding of Hebrew thought patterns.
For a gradual introduction to the Hebrew language,
try this Welcome to the Hebrew Names 'Plus' Version.
Or go straight to the book of:
John, or
The Revelation.

For comments, questions, or broken links, please e-mail me at johnt204(at)webname.com.
Please copy and paste this   %%--%%--HALLEL--%%--%%   into the subject line of your email
so that I can notice it easier in case it goes to my spam folder. Thanks.

Last update 14 December 2023