MESSIAH: Jesus, Yeshua, or Yehoshua?

Screen Shot 2017-04-23 at 8.31.44 PMI have little care for the politics, traditions or whether a particular discussion plays into my own thoughts on a matter. I also have no need to condemn people or pretend that their beliefs are based in some dark conspiracy. I also prefer not to know why some people use one name over another name (i.e. Jesus was used sound like Zeus, etc).  What I do care is to know the Truth and to understand Scripture. I prefer to take a scholarly approach to the matter, instead of quoting hundreds of conspiracy theorists who agree with some preferred view, so let’s get started by delving straight into the history of the name of the Messiah.

 

On page 67 of Victor Parker’s book ‘A History of Greece, 1300 to 30 BC’ published by John Wiley & Sons in 2014, we learn that the Greek letter Iota is the ninth letter of the Greek alphabet. It was derived from the Phoenician letter Yodh. Letters that arose from this letter include the Latin I and J, the Cyrillic І (І, і), Yi (Ї, ї), and Je (Ј, ј), and iotated letters (e.g. Yu (Ю, ю)).

In other words, the first letter in the Textus Receptus for the name of the Messiah [Ἰησοῦς] is the Iota which was derived from the “Y” sounding “Yodh” of the Phoenicians and very similar to the Yod of Hebrew, and from whence we have the name “Yeshua” or “Yehoshua”.  Derivatives of this letter “Yodh” were also the Latin “I” and “J”.  Thus, “YESU” in Greek became “JESU” in Latin as the Greek’s more “Y” version of Iota became the equivalent in Latin of “J”. In this, we find proof that the first letter of “JESU” should be the “Y” sounds of “YESU”. Let us continue.

The second letter in the Greek Textus Receptus for the Messiah’s name [Ἰησοῦς] is that of Eta.  Originally denoting a consonant /h/, its sound value in the classical Attic dialect of Ancient Greek was a long vowel [ɛː], raised to [i] in hellenistic Greek, a process known as iotacism. It was derived from the Phoenician letter heth Phoenician heth.svg. Letters that arose from eta include the Latin H and the Cyrillic letter И.

In other words, the second letter of “YESU” is the Eta which was derived from the “H” sounding “Heth” of the Phoenicians; thus, if we apply the ‘iotacized‘ diphthong sound value of the Eta, which appears to be an “H” and “E” combination, we find the result is that of “Y’HESU”, although some may see it as “YEHSU” or “YHESU”.

The third letter in the Textus Receptus rendering of the Messiah’s name [Ἰησοῦς] is that of the Sigma.  The shape and alphabetic position of sigma is derived from Phoenician shin 𐤔 Phoenician sin.svg.  The Phoenician letter Shin (also spelled Šin (šīn) or Sheen) gave rise to the Greek Sigma (Σ) (which in turn gave Latin S and Cyrillic С), and the letter Sha in the Glagolitic and Cyrillic scripts (Glagolitic sha.svg, Ш).

In other words, the third letter of “Y’HESU” is the Sigma which was derived from the “SH” sounding “Sheen” of the Phoenicians; thus, if we apply this “SH” sound to “YEHESU”, we find the result is “Y’HESHU”.

The fourth letter in the Textus Receptus rendering of the Messiah’s name [Ἰησοῦς] is that of the Omicron. The Omicron represented the sound [o] in contrast to omega [ɔː] and ου [oː].

In other words, the fourth letter in the Textus Receptus rendering gives the name of the Messiah a sound of “Y’HESHOU”, instead of the heavily Romanized modern version, Jesus, pronunced “JEE’ – SUHS”.

The fifth letter in the Textus Receptus for the rendering of the Messiah’s name [Ἰησοῦς] is that of the Upsilon.  The Upsilon had the /y/ sound in Koine Greek.

Regarding the Textus Receptus’ use of a final letter [ς] for the Messiah’s name [Ἰησοῦς], on page 490 of  William White’s Notes and Queries, published in 1904 by the Oxford University Press, we read:

“In Greek, which did not possess the sound sh, but substituted s, and rejected the Semitic evanescent gutturals, Yēshū(ā) became Yēsū’ (Ἰησοῦ), in the nominative case Yēsū’∙s (Ἰησοῦς). In Latin these were written in Roman letters Iesu, nominative Iesu∙s. In Old French this became in the nominative case Jésus; in the regimen or oblique case Jésu. Middle English adopted the stem-form Jesu, the regular form of the name down to the time of the Renascence. It then became the fashion to restore the Latin ∙s of the nominative case, Jesu∙s, and to use the nominative form also for the objective and oblique cases, just as we do in Charle∙s, Jame∙s, Juliu∙s, and Thoma∙s. Very generally, however, the vocative remained Jesu, as in Latin and in Middle English, and this is still usual in hymns.”

In other words, the final “s” in the name of Jesus does not appear to have been used originally, but were only used in the nominative case for Latin and French, although the final “s” was not part of the “stem-form” of the name which was “IESU or JESU”.  In this, we find good reason to believe that the final “s” was an added piece as the name of “IESU” was translated into Latin and eventually French.  This would seem to render the name of “JESUS” as “IESU” more properly without a final “S”.

Thus, knowing that the final letter in the Textus Receptus was considered an addition for the nominative Latin and French renderings of the Messiah’s name, we can conclude that the name found in the Greek sounded fairly much like “Y’ – HE” – SHO’ – UH”, thereby rendering it with the sound closest to ‘Yehoshua” which is the Hebrew name [יְהוֹשׁוּעַ] for “YaHeWeH is Salvation”.  Therefore, the following verse makes complete sense.

“And she [Mary] shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Ἰησοῦς [YEHOSHUA]: for he shall save his people from their sins.” – Matthew 1:21

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