Hebraic word Shêm (Eng. "Title" / "Name")

Name versus Title

The English concept of a “Name” and the Hebraic concept of a "Name" aren't exactly the same thing.

Please refer to your preferred Lexicon(s) for Hebrew Strong’s Number H8034.


In English:

• A name is a collection of phonetic sounds with no apparent meaning to English ears. There's exceptions to that like “Hope” or “Faith”, but most names come from foreign languages and mean something in a foreign language, but mean nothing in English. So English ears EXPECT to hear a meaningless string of syllables for a “name”.

• A title describes your role and/or what you do.


In Hebrew:

• A Name describes your character, your role, what you do, something about you or your life, where you were born, etc.

• A title is a name. Because a Hebraic name has meaning, there is not the same distinction between a “title” and a “name” that exists in English. Hebraic uses the word “shem” for what we would call a “name” and for what we would call a “title” in English. “Wonderful”, “Counselor” and “Prince of Peace” are called NAMES (shems) in Isaiah chapter 9.


Thus, In Hebraic mindset, A person’s "Shêm" (pronounced “shame”, ironically) is their character, authority, honor, reputation, integrity, and true self. The Messiah's "Shêm" is truth, light, king, servant … righteous, holy, love … Torah.

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So when someone tells you, “there's a difference between a name and a title”, and then proceeds to talk about 'names' or 'titles' for The Heavenly Father, they may be going down a path that does not agree with how Hebrew speech describes names and are trying to understand this topic from an English perspective instead of from a Hebrew perspective, where a title is a “shem” and a name is a “shem”. It’s only because we use names that are meaningless to English ears that we view such a distinction to exist in English.

The Almighty, The Creator, DOES have other "Names" (as we reference it in English), such as “Adonai”¹, “Eloah”², “Elohim”³, etc., which are considered “names” / “shems” in Hebrew. However, even if Hebrew calls both a "shem" or “name”, Adonai, Eloah, Elohim, and other terms we see used, do not have the same level of complexity that “YAHWEH”⁴ / “EHYEH”⁵ have.

And it’s this complexity that would cause the English mindset to set aka "the Hebrew Tetragrammaton" apart as a “Name”, and classify the others as what English would call a “title”, even if Hebrew does not make such a distinction. But keep in mind that Hebrew thought considers "Eloah", “Elohim” and “Adonai” to also be "Names", just as "YAHWEH" is a "Name". For Some Jews, there are 7 shêms (names) of "God", though I have read that one Rav has written he felt "Elohim" shouldn't be considered one of them.

Special Thanks to Author Messianic Jewish brother Yoseph Viel, for a great deal of this text contained here-within.

¹ Aramaic: “Maran”. Master / Lord.

² Aramaic: “Alaha”. Basically meaning, “Mighty One” / “Divine One”.

³ Aramaic: “Alahe” (pl) ‒ Not used in the same way as “Elohim” is used in the Hebrew MSS.

Aramaic: “Marya”; in at least one other dialect, “Moryo”.

Aramaic: “Ahiyeh”. (Ancient Galilean). My ©1961/1964 Hebrew ⇄ English Dictionary I bought back in the year 1980 defines "Ehyeh" as "the name of God". The English word "God" is used for other Hebrew words, but the only 'other' place (Hebrew word) I have seen the words 'name' and 'God' in the same definition line is for the Hebrew "Yahh" (commonly referred to as "Yah", but in Hebrew, the "h" is a hard consonant). which is defined as “God’s name”.

#Language #Authority #Character #Title #Name #Shem #Hebraic ( #Hebrew / #Aramaic ) #Acts2_38 #John5_43 #1Samuel17_45