The Divine Names and Titles.

Part II. — JAH.

By the Rev. Dr. Bullinger.

Taken from Things to Come Magazine, June, 1896


We have seen that a name is that by which any person or thing is known; but we come now to the important fact that the same person may be known by different names, according to the relationship in which the one who knows stands to the one who is known.

It is so with ourselves. Each one has a name by which he is known to those who do not know him personally, i.e., a name by which strangers know him: then he has a name by which he is known to his friends, and a name by which he is known in his family circle. Those who stand in closest relationship know him and call him by a name which no others may use, and which few are even acquainted with.

It is so with the Divine names and titles, as we shall see. Each betokens a special relationship, and determines the degree of the knowledge possessed by the one who uses the name or the title.

To His enemies He is a "man of war"; to His redeemed He is "the God of peace"; to His children He is a " Father." And so with all the other names and titles, which we propose to consider in order.

Our desire is that Bible students who read these papers should be able so to mark their Bibles that they may always know at a glance what the Name or the Title is. The renderings in the Authorised Version are not always uniform, otherwise our task would be much simplified. We wish to put the English reader in possession of facts which will make him independent of all other helps.

1. JAH.

We begin with the name JAH (pronounced Yah).

This is not, as is thought by some, a mere abbreviation of Jehovah, because it is several times joined to it and is used with it. It is thus distinguished from it.

Its first occurrence assists us in determining its meaning (Ex. xv. 2): " My strength and my song is Jah, and He is become, vaYAHee, to me salvation." Here Jah is associated, and stands in immediate connection with the verb haYAH, to be, from which it is derived. Hayah means to be, i.e., the condition of being; and the name formed from it means He who is, or rather He is.

It is thus distinguished from Jehovah, which means not only He who is, but He who was and is to come. With Jah it is not this, but simply He who is, absolutely and independently. As it is stated in Col. i. 16, 17, 11 He is (not He was) before all things, and by Him all things have subsisted and still subsist."

In this, its first occurrence, it stands connected with "salvation," personal salvation, and further on in the song "(ver. 13) — for it nearly always occurs in songs — it is associated with redemption. This furnishes us with a clue to j its meaning and use; and we shall find that wherever it j occurs there is always this thought with it. It occurs first, in Exodus, which is the book of "the Names," and the i book of personal redemption, for it is here that we first j have a reference to that wondrous fact. j

Forty-nine times (7 x 7) we find it in the Bible. Of these, forty-three are in the Psalms, and only six elsewhere,

It is remarkable that its first appearance in the Psalms is in the second, or Exodus-book (Psa. xlii.-lxxii.), in which special reference is made to the Exodus. Psa. lxviii. 4 is the passage; and if this is read with the context, it will be | found that praise for redeeming grace is the leading thought. See especially vers. 3, 5, 19, 20, 22. Twice He is there called "the God of salvation," and His goings in the Sanctuary are referred to (ver. 24) as in harmony with Ex. xv. 13: "Thou in Thy mercy hast led forth Thy people which Thou hast redeemed: Thou hast guided them in Thy strength unto Thy holy habitation." So that Jah means He who is, in Himself, and not merely the creator, or as one sustaining some relation to creation. He who is not merely the Redeemer or Saviour, but who is Himself the salvation and redemption of His people, and who is, therefore, worthy of infinite praise.

A full knowledge of all that this name means and implies can be gathered, not from Lexicons or from etymology, but only from the way in which the Holy Spirit has used it in the Word. It is essential, therefore, that every passage where it occurs should be carefully studied.

Unfortunately, it is not uniformly rendered. Once it is transliterated "JAH," as it ought always to be; in other places it is rendered " Lord," thus confusing it with Jehovah, which is always represented in capital letters thus — " Lord."

Now, if every occurrence is marked in ink of some special colour, then, in all the other places where we have the word Lord, we shall know that it stands for Jehovah, and will not need marking. This will be a convenient arrangement, as the word Jehovah occurs many hundred times.

The following is a complete list of all the passages: —


The SIX outside the Psalms:

Ex. xv. 2. "The Lord (Jah) is my strength."
xvii. 16. "The Lord (Jah) hath sworn that the Lord (Jehovah) will have war," etc.
Isa. xii. 2. "For the Lord (Jah) JEHOVAH is my strength," etc.
xxvi. 4. "In the Lord (Jah) JEHOVAH is everlasting strength."
xxxviii. 11. "I said I shall not seethe Lord (Jah), even the Lord (Jah), in the land of the living."


The TWENTY in the Psalms:

Psa. lxviii. 4. "Extol Him that rideth in the heavens by His name JAH, and rejoice before Him."
lxviii. 18. "That the Lord (Jah) God (Elohim) might dwell among them."
lxxvii. 11. "I will remember the works of the Lord (Jah)."
lxxxix. 8. "O Lord (Jehovah) God (Elohim) of hosts, who is a strong Lord (Jah) like unto Thee?"
xciv. 7. "Yet they say the Lord (Jah) shall not see."
xciv. 12. "Blessed is the man whom thou Teachest, O Lord (Jah)."
cii. 18. "Shall praise the Lord (Jah)."
cxv. 17. "The dead praise not the Lord (Jah)."
cxv. 18. "But we will bless the Lord (Jah)."
cxviii. 5. "I called upon the Lord (Jah) in distress: the Lord (Jah) answered me."
cxviii. 14. "The Lord (Jah) is my strength and song."
cxviii. 17. "I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord (Jah)."
cxviii. 18. "The Lord (Jah) hath chastened me sore."
cxviii. 19. "I will praise the Lord (Jah)."
cxxii. 4. "The tribes of the Lord (Jah)."
cxxx. 3. "If Thou, Lord (Jah), shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord (Adonai), who shall stand? "
cxxnv. 3. "Praise the Lord (Jah)."
cxxxv. 4. "For the Lord (Jah) hath chosen Jacob unto Himself."!
cl. 6. "Praise ye the Lord (Jah) " (first time).


The twenty-three in the Psalms, forming part of the word Hallelu-JAH, i.e., praise the Lord:

Psa. civ. 35. Psa. cxvii. 2.
Psa. cv. 45. Psa. cxxxv. 1, 21.
Psa. cvi. 1, 48. Psa. cxlvi. 1, 10.
Psa. cxi. 1. Psa. cxlvii. 1, 20.
Psa. cxii. 1. Psa. cxlviii. 1, 14.
Psa. cxiii. 1, 9. Psa. cxlix. 1, 9. 
Psa. cxv. 18. Psa. cl. 1.
Psa. cxvi. 19. sa. cl. 6 (second time).


Continued in Part 3