In the 21st century, the name of the ‘Son of God’ has been synonymous with Jesus. But, several theologians and historians show that the very name of Jesus has gone through multiple translations and alterations over the centuries. This implies that Jesus’ real name is actually not Jesus, but some ancient name that is different in different regions. In ancient Greek, the real name is Iesous. In other Hebrew texts, the name of Jesus is Joshua. And in multiple versions of the Bible- the New Testament- the name of Jesus is Hoshea. This name is in itself a variant of the name Jehoshua. The latter predates the mass exodus of the Jews centuries before he was even born, which then evolved to Jeshua, and finally- Jesus. Needless to say, this name has been in usage since modern times as his devotees call him by it.
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Jesus’ Real Name- Yeshua, Joshua, Or Iesous?
Interestingly, there is a certain section of the Christian population that believes that when people call out to Jesus- their Son, they are actually worshipping the wrong person. Jesus’ real name is Joshua or Yeshua- not Jesus- which leads to some Christians commenting on the veracity of their Gods. For example, Messianic Jews believe in worshipping Yeshua, rather than Jesus.
Some believe that Jesus’ real name wasn’t given to him by his parents, the name was a ‘command from the Heavens’. It should also be mentioned that Christ’s name was not at all unique, and there were quite a lot of people who had the name Yeshua or Joshua. During the second century AD, the name Joshua or Yeshua was quite common among the Jewish population. Therefore, in order to differentiate between them and the “real Jesus”, several Biblical texts changed the name to Jesus of Nazareth. He himself was born among humans who had the same name as he did.
The Etymology Behind The Name Jesus
According to multiple theologians who have worked on Biblical texts, the name of Jesus has quite a vibrant etymological and historical background associated with it. Jesus is the Grecian form of the Hebrew name that was ascribed to Joshua, the son of Nun, and the great Israelite leader. Apparently, Jesus’ parents also decided to call him Hoshea or O’Shea in this Jewish tradition. In the Bible, Joshua succeeded Moses as the Lord’s Servant. He managed to bring Israel to the promised land as he had sworn to Abraham, and was a very important figure to Hebrews all over the world. From an etymological standpoint, when the word Jesus is broken down- it means ‘Lord is Salvation’.
When it comes to matters of Theology, it is advised that religious texts not be translated on the basis of their etymological meaning- but rather the purpose behind the name.
Names Or Devotion- What Matters More?
Jesus’ real name is usually used for identifying Christ as the Son and Servant of God who would show the path to God to other people. This not only speaks volumes about the omnipotence that Christ has, but it also indicates how favorable he is to his believers. Therefore, it is understood that while Jesus is a distinctly human name, the translation and use suggest that God has come to mortals in this form. Regardless, several questions have been raised about the name. Some people believe that Jesus’ real name is actually Yeshua. Other Christians believe that the name is nothing but an error- and somehow equate calling Christ by Jesus as calling God by the name of Zeus- the Greek God. It is possible that people who think they pray to Jesus do not pray to the actual Jesus but to someone else.
Now, while Zeus and Jesus sound similar when one is pronouncing them, the similarities end there. The name Jesus has absolutely no connection with the Greek God of thunder, with the latter being connected to a completely different form of life and worship.