YHVH, Behold, the man, behold the nail
What does YHVH really mean?
This seems to be an unanswered question for scholars. Maybe it means “I am.”
Biblical scholars do not know how YHWH was originally pronounced because its original pronunciation, which was part of the sacred Oral Tradition of the Jews, was lost when the Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 AD.
But what does the Tetragrammaton YHWH mean? Biblical scholars have been arguing about the meaning of YHWH for centuries.
Since biblical names generally have a discernible meaning, scholars have believed that YHWH can be reasonably translated. Based on etymology and context most scholars have agreed that YHWH is an archaic form of the verb “to be” (in Hebrew hawah) and should be translated “I am who I am or I will be who I will be.”
This meaning contextually fits the passages in Exodus 3:13-15a: Moses then said to God [Elohim], ‘Look, if I go to the Israelites and say to me, “What is his name?” what am I to tell them?’ God [Elohim] said to Moses, ‘I am [YHWH] he who is.’ And he said, ‘This is what you are to say to the Israelites I am [YHWH] has sent me to you…’, which agrees with Exodus 3:6: I am the God of your ancestors …, and Jesus’ “I AM” statements in the fourth Gospel i.e.: In all truth I tell you, before Abraham ever was, I AM (John 8:58).
Roots of Hebrew letters – getting back to basics
In Hebrew, each letter has a meaning, and together, form the overall meaning of the word.
Here are some charts showing the Hebrew letters and their meanings:
Now, rewriting the name YHVH with the meanings assigned:
Reading from right to left………………..
Hey Vav Hey Yod
Yod…….. arm and hand
Hey…….. behold, man with arms and hands raised
Vav………..nail, hook, secure
Hey ………..behold, man with arms and hands raised
What is this a picture of?
Emphasis is on the arms and hands and a nail
Another picture of a man, with arms and hands raised, with a nail:
Even Pilate said 4000 years later to the crowd:
“Behold the man!”
I think Moses had a very clear picture of WHO YHVH was, as God was speaking to him in the burning bush.
The angel of the Lord was there in the bush, when God (Elohim, plural) spoke to Moses, and the angel of the Lord (Malak YHVH) was a visible presence.
The very message in the name of YHVH spoke prophetically throughout all the ages to come, who He was, and how he would finally save his people.
I have thought and prayed about this a long time. I hope I have interpreted it correctly.
Added notes from comment section:
In hebrew, “ani” means “I am.” not YHVH
God actually said ” אֶהְיֶה אֲשֶׁר אֶהְיֶה,” as his name, not יְהוָה
That is translated “I shall be that I shall be,” not “I am”
In English letters, god (Elohim) said his name was HYHA, not HVHY
So, the point is that YHVH was not given by god Elohim to be a name.
it was a description!!!
The name officially given by Elohim was “I shall be that I shall be,” not “I am”
but “YHVH” is written there also…after writing “angel”..ie, Malak YHVH
What Moses was doing was describing what he saw. He had no word for this, so he used letters to form a word.
“Angel of the Lord” was actually meant to be the “angel, arm and hand, behold the man with his hands and arms raised up, with a nail…..behold the man with the man with his hands and arms raised up”
This site was just as amazing as the burning bush.
Moses had never seen a crucifixion.
He saw an “angel that was a crucified man”
Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God.
2 There the angel of the Lord (YHVH) appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up.
4 When the Lord (YHVH) saw that he had gone over to look, God
(Elohim) called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!”
And Moses said, “Here I am.”
5 “Do not come any closer,” God (Elohim) said. “Take off your
sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.”
6 Then he said, “I am the God (Elohim) of your father,[a] the God
(Elohim)of Abraham, the God (Elohim)of Isaac and the God
(Elohim) of Jacob.” At this, Moses hid his face, because he was
afraid to look at God (Elohim).
7 The Lord (YHVH) said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my
people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering.
8 So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the
Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey—the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites.
9 And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen
the way the Egyptians are oppressing them.
10 So now, go. I am
sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.”
11 But Moses said to God (Elohim) “Who am I that I should go to
Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
12 And God (Elohim) said, “I will be with you. And this will be the
sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you[b] will worship God on this mountain.”
13 Moses said to God (Elohim), “Suppose I go to the Israelites and
say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?”
14 God (Elohim) said to Moses, “I am who I am.[c] This is what you
are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’”
15 God (Elohim) also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The
Lord God (YHVH, Elohim) of your fathers—the God (Elohim) of
Abraham, the God (Elohim) of Isaac and the God (Elohim) of
Jacob—has sent me to you.’