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In the West, a child’s name is often chosen for its pleasant sound, or because another family member had it. The Jews of the Second Temple period also named after relatives (Luke 1:59-63). However, almost all Jewish names have a literal meaning. Occasionally this is seen in English names too, such as Scott (a person from Scotland), Johnson (son of John), and Baker (bread maker). But with Hebrew names it is the rule, rather than the exception.

The name יֵשׁוּעַ‬ (Yeshua) means “The Lord’s Salvation”, or “Cry Out to the Lord for Help”. It is the short version of Yehoshua (Joshua), which means “The Lord Saves (or turns) Us”. In comparison, prior to being transliterated from the Hebrew Bible, the name Ἰησοῦς (Iesous) did not exist in Greek. Through multiple translations and changes in pronunciation, a tradition of saying “Jesus” has obscured His name, “Yeshua.” It has shifted His perceived message and identity from Hebrew to Greek.

However it is important to keep in mind that there is no such doctrine as salvation by pronunciation. Therefore, as long as we know we are referring to the Son of God, “Emmanuel” (God with us), then God can bless our worship. We ought not strain at the gnat and swallow the camel. Let us not create major issues out of small issues that have no bearing on our salvation. If it makes you feel closer to the Savior to call Him Yeshua, then by all means use that name. But, let’s not find ourselves criticizing our brothers and sisters over matters that are essentially a personal choice based on the level of revelation one has received from God.
God bless!

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