The question sounds simple on the surface, but if you asked the over seven billion people on today’s planet Earth, you would get a multitude of answers. More concerning is the fact that if you were to ask 100 different Christians from 100 different types of churches, you would also get a multitude of answers when this should be Christianity 101 - for every Christian should know God’s Name.
Part of the reason for the confusion is man’s understanding concerning the truth of God as a threefold being. According to Scripture, the God of Heaven and Earth, the One true and living God, manifests Himself in three distinct Entities or Persons. These are revealed to man as God the Father, the Son (or Word), and the Holy Spirit. This is commonly called the Trinity. Even though the word Trinity is not in the Bible, the Bible is clear about the fact that God is One, but yet three Persons. I like to call this the "Trichotomy of God."
"For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one." - I John 5:7
Even though God manifests Himself as “three,” He is but One. There is only One True God.
"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD:" - Deuteronomy 6:4
Each manifestation of the Godhead has a distinct purpose or function that the others do not have. All function as One and are united by Purpose, Plan, Mind, Will, and Nature or Name.
"And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you." - John 14:16-17
When Jesus was baptized, the Scriptures clearly demonstrate the Trinity, or the three Persons of God. As the Son was being baptized, the Holy Spirit descended upon Him, and the Voice of the Father spoke from Heaven.
"And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." - Matthew 3:16-17
These three Persons of God are in complete Unity and Harmony. None of the Persons in the Godhead work independently of the others, but They glorify each other in complete compliance with the one Will of the Father.
Now that we have established the fact that God is One and that He is Three Persons, what is His Name?
The Word of God states that the Name of Jesus is the Name given to the whole family of heaven and earth. This family includes the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
The Name of the Godhead is Jesus.
"For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named." - Ephesians 3:14-15
Jesus said that He came in His Father’s Name. Any true believer in Christ would agree that the Son of God came in the Name of Jesus.
"I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive." - John 5:43
The Holy Ghost also came in the Name of Jesus.
"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." - John 14:26
The Son of God obtained the Name of Jesus by inheritance.
"Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?" - Hebrews 1:4-5
The word inheritance means something regarded as a heritage, genetic transmission of characteristics. The inherited Name is more than just about a title, but it is an inheritance of the very nature or character of God the Father.
Jesus was with His disciples, He thoroughly instructed them concerning the Godhead and the Name by which He was sent. Knowing well that His disciples understood what He taught, Jesus commanded the disciples to baptize in the singular Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
"And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." - Matthew 28:18-19
Understanding what that Name was and in direct obedience to Jesus’ command, the disciples baptized in the one Name of the Godhead: Jesus.
"Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." - Acts 2:38
"When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus." - Acts 19:5
"For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus." - Acts 8:16
If we were to baptize in another manner, then the following Scripture would contradict what was commanded by Jesus.
"And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him." - Colossians 3:17
The terms Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are titles. The Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost is Jesus!
The Works that Jesus did, He did in the Father’s Name.
"Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me" - John 10:25
The Father’s Name in Hebrew is יהוה called the tetragrammaton, and in the Old Testament of the King James Bible it is usually printed as LORD. This Name appears in the Scriptures 6,828 times. But these four Hebrew letters have no vowels in the original Hebrew Scriptures and depending on which vowels you use, the name יהוה can be spoken in many different manners. This is why some call the Father Jehovah and some call Him Yahweh. Many sects of Judaism will never pronounce the name of the LORD יהוה, because it is too holy; therefore they will call Him “Ha-Shem,” which simply means The Name, or they may call His Name “Adonai,” which means Lord or Master.
The truth is that besides the Name of Jesus, the Name of the Father יהוה is unknown. God is a Spirit, and to pronounce His Name is simply a breath sound. God is a Spirit, a Breath that is unknown to man. But the unknown Father made Himself known through the Son. The Father poured Himself into the Son when He begat the Son, before creation.
We know that the Name of the Son of God is Jesus, but what is the Name of the Father? And what is the Name of the Holy Spirit?
Again, the answer is simply, Jesus.
The Father never wanted man to be able to pronounce His Name. As I stated above, His Name is a breath sound. He is the unknown God; He is a Spirit. The Father made Himself known to man through His Son, Jesus Christ. When the Father begot His Son, He poured Himself into His Son and gave Him the same Name or Nature. Jesus came to this earth, bearing His Father's Name, and He never tried to make a Name for Himself.
Now the Christian Church is so very confused on this matter, because we can find old hymns and new modern church worship songs calling God the Father by the name of Jehovah or Yahweh. Part of this comes from the King James Bible's use of the word Jehovah. Out of the 6828 times that the יהוה appears in the Bible, for some reason the interpreters of the King James Bible decided to use the word Jehovah four times: (Exodus 6:3; Psalm 83:18; Isaiah 12:2; and Isaiah 26:4.) and three times as a part of Hebrew place-names (Genesis 22:14; Exodus 17:15; Judges 6:24.) All other 6,821 times it was used in the Bible, the King James interpreters wrote the word LORD.
Please allow me to take a small detour to establish a fact about the King James Version of the Bible. While I study and preach out of the King James Version, I also understand that it is not a perfect translation.
Some people consider the King James Version absolutely correct and the supreme authority above all Bible translations. However, we do believe it to be wrong in the account of Jesus’ words on the cross when He cried out:
"…Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" - Matthew 27:46 (KJV)
I believe that the Lamsa’s translation to be much more accurate on this account:
"…Eli, Eli, lemana shabakthani! My God, my God, for this I was spared!" - Matthew 27:46 (Lamsa)
Obviously the King James translation is not perfect, because we know that Jesus never sinned, and He never would have cried this type of accusation to the Father, especially when just a few moments later He said:
"And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit:" - Luke 23:46
Jesus was crying out on the cross, “for this I was spared”, in reference to what happened to Him in the Garden of Gethsemane.
The only time Jesus was saved from death was when He was dying in the Garden and the Angel came and ministered to Him.
Mark 14:33-36 says:
"And he taketh with him Peter and James and John, and began to be sore amazed, and to be very heavy; And saith unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful unto death: tarry ye here, and watch. And he went forward a little, and fell on the ground, and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt."
"And there appeared an angel unto Him from heaven, strengthening Him." - Luke 22:43
Hebrews 5:7 says:
"Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared."
My point is that the King James Bible might just be the best translation that we have available to us, but it is not a perfect translation.
Concerning the four times that the King James Bible used the word Jehovah, I believe that they got it wrong. It is also interesting to note that the word “Jah” (or יה in Hebrew) is used 50 times in the Bible, but the King James interpreters only used the word Jah once in Psalm 68:4. Again, I believe they had no business trying to take the Holy Unknown Name of the Father and write an English word to try and tell us what God’s Name is. As long as they used the word LORD it would serve as a title of supreme authority and not a personal name.
If man could have a personal relationship with God the Father without going through the Son of God, then Jesus would not have had to die on the cross for our sins. The Bible is clear that there is only one way for man to have a personal relationship with God.
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." - I Timothy 2:5
This is the ministry of Jesus to take down the dividing wall between us and God. Sin had separated us from God and made us an enemy of God, but Jesus came to this earth, lived a perfect sinless life, fulfilled the Law, moral and ceremonial, and then nailed it to the cross. He died in our place and took the judgment that we deserved upon Himself.
"For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." - II Corinthians 5:21
Jesus is the only way you or I can ever know the Father.
Most religions of this world are trying to reach the Father by circumventing the Son of God. The sad part of this commentary is that even Christians are unknowingly trying to do the same thing by calling the Father by the name of Jehovah or Yahweh.
You might be asking where this Name Yahweh comes into the picture. As previously stated, in the original Hebrew Scriptures there were no vowels included around the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. In the modern translations of the Hebrew text, vowels were later added. There are many different vowel combinations that man could put around the Name יהוה and therefore you would get many different pronunciations of this Name. Some modern translations of the Bible chose to use the word Yahweh for the Name of the Father.
The conclusion here is that neither Jehovah, nor Yahweh, nor Jah is the correct Name of the Father. The Father never wanted His Name to be known, except through the Son of God. It is so very interesting to me that the Orthodox Jews know better than to try to pronounce the Name of the Father, because they do not want to break the third commandment: “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain.” But Christians do not know this.
I came from a religious world where I was guilty of trying to have a relationship with the Father by circumventing the Son of God. I was not consciously aware of what I was doing, but subconsciously I was guilty. We would frequently use Jehovah or Jah and we even went so far as to chant the Yud, Hey, Vaw, Hey at times in our worship services. (God help us.)
This is horrifying to me as I now realize that this type of use of the Hebrew letters YHVH are found deeply connected with sorcery and witchcraft. Witches and warlocks will chant these four letters in their rituals to Lucifer. This practice is found associated with Wicca, Satanism, Tarot, the occult, and the Kabbalah.
The Kabbalah is an esoteric method or school of thought that originated in Judaism. It is really nothing more than Jewish mysticism and it is full of what I call New Age religion. The use of YHVH is used throughout the scope of the Kabbalah. I would warn the reader to stay away from the Kabbalah. For even though it may seem interesting to you and you may think it will make you wise, it is full of the poison of Lucifer.
Christians know to pray in the Name of Jesus whether it is over a meal, or to heal the sick, or to ask God for His blessings. Some Christians even know to baptize in Jesus Name. But we need to take this one step further, and do everything in the Name of Jesus.
Christianity is all about Jesus. He is the Object of our Faith. With Christianity it is not what you know, but Who you know that matters.
The Name of God is Jesus Christ. Jesus is the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. We only need one Name, the Name that is higher than any other name, the Name with all Power, the Name of Jesus. I’m not saying that God is not a Trinity, for He surely is One, and He is Three. But God’s Word says that all Persons of the Trinity have the same Name, the Name of Jesus.
What audacity of Christians to try to put another name on the Father and to try and have a personal relationship with the Father apart from the Son of God. What disrespect to the Son of God. The Son of God deserves all glory, honor, power, and blessing. Worthy is the Lamb!
"That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him." - John 5:23
"Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." - John 12:28
The only way man can connect to the Father is through the Son, Jesus Christ.
"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." - John 14:6
Jesus is our Ladder to the Father. He is our Bridge over troubled water. He is our one and only Mediator.
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." - I Timothy 2:5
We don’t need Jesus plus anything or anyone. We just need Jesus. He is our everything. He is our LORD.
A life of faith is simply putting all of our trust in Jesus Christ and trusting Him to take us to the Father, to take us to heaven, or better yet, to take us all the way to the New City. There is only one Name that will take us where we need to go, and that is the Name of Jesus.
"Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." - Acts 4:10-12