- a name of God in the Old Testament, a rendering of the ineffable name, JHVH, in the Hebrew Scriptures.
- (in modern Christian use) God.
- Old Testament the personal name of God, revealed to Moses on Mount Horeb (Exodus 3)
Word Origin and History for jehovah
1530, Tyndale's erroneous transliteration of Hebrew Tetragramaton YHWH using vowel points of Adhonai "my lord" (see Yahweh). Used for YHWH (the full name being too sacred for utterance) in four places in the Old Testament in the KJV where the usual translation lord would have been inconvenient; taken as the principal and personal name of God.
The vowel substitution was originally made by the Masoretes as a direction to substitute Adhonai for "the ineffable name." European students of Hebrew took this literally, which yielded Latin JeHoVa (first attested in writings of Galatinus, confessor to Leo X, 1516). Jehovah's Witnesses "member of Watchtower Bible and Tract Society" first attested 1933; the organization founded c.1879 by Charles Taze Russell (1852-1916); the name from Isa. xliii:10.
Another name for God; an approximation of the holiest name of God in Hebrew (the name was held so sacred that it was never written or spoken, and scholars are not sure exactly how it should be pronounced). It means “I am that I am,” or “I am the one who is.” In the incident of the burning bush in the Book of Exodus, God, speaking out of the bush, tells Moses that this is his name.