Why I say HaShem
Putting the Divine Name into Perspective
This page will provide resources to help explain my personal halacha of why I say HaShem and not the Divine Name on this website. Many in the Hebrew Roots movement are confused about what it really means to proclaim His Name, honor His Name, give glory to His Name, and call on His Name. I myself at one time got confused by the very poor scholarship that exists out there, and was taken hold by the Sacred Name theories for a season, only to find them misguided and fruitless in the end.
Now, let me be clear that my use of HaShem is not based around the doctrine of "ineffebility" or anything unscriptural like that, but rather as a deep form of reverence, respect and honor. I no longer use the Name as lightly or as casually as I used to, especially on the internet where His name has been disgraced by the very poor behaviour displayed by those who profess to follow Him. One of the biggest factors in my change though was seeing ample evidence (found in the resources below) that Yeshua Himself actually followed this custom and had no issue with it, having never made it a point of contention. Another reason is due to my learning of the Hebrew language. Once I actually learned Hebrew many of the Sacred Name issues finally became clear to me, and I understood (thanks to Yoseph Veil) the legitimate reasons for why the Divine Name was no longer used among the heathen (as it still holds true today). It was not because of pagan ideas that entered into Judaism (although there is evidence that this had influenced at least some of the sages). In actuality, some of the real paganism is found within the Sacred Name movement itself, where the sound of the name (rather than it's meaning) is treated as if it were a magic spell. Our Heavenly Father is not controlled by "sounds" or special incantations. No, it is rather the meaning that these sounds carry which matters, and this will change from language to language, culture to culture. Our Father who is heaven seeks beyond the sounds of our voice and searches the innermost parts of our heart.
I hope that the following resources will thoroughly explain these things for you and I pray that in the meantime you will respect my personal halacha and not be offended because I do not constantly use the Divine Name on this website. I understand that this makes me a minority among Netzarim, but I must hold true to what I believe is right and appropriate. Todah rabbah.
Please note I may not agree completely with everything that is taught by each of the authors below, but there is certainly more than enough validity with in each source for me to highly endorse them as very valuable and trustworthy tools in exploring this issue. And I must say, valuable and trustworthy sources for this issue are few and far between.
The Sacred Name - by Tim Hegg
This is an excellent three part investigation into the Sacred Name by Biblical Scholar Tim Hegg. Unlike many within the Sacred Name movement, Tim Hegg speaks and understands Biblical Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic, and uses his intricate understanding of these languages and culture from which the Scriptures were written in to give a thoroughly accurate understanding of key texts used in the debate of the Sacred Name.
The Divine Name - by Yoseph Viel
Here is a two hour lecture (split up in to two parts) by Yoseph Viel on the Divine Name. Like Tim Hegg, Yoseph Viel is a Biblical Hebrew scholar who can read the text fluently and once again gives us insight to the language and culture of the Hebrews that you do not find in the Sacred Name movement. In particular, he shares with us things that have been written about the Divine Name that have never before been published in any other language other than Hebrew. I highly recommend this study as it covers many more issues than Tim Hegg's article and it really helped me to correct some of my own theological errors when I myself was believing some of the Sacred Name Movements theology.
Hallowed Be Thy Name - by First Fruits of Zion
This is a short book put together by First Fruits of Zion that once again aims to be an accurate exploration of this issue of the Divine Name. What I especially like and enjoy about their work here is that it is so well referenced. Often what is lacking in the Sacred Name Movement is valid references to support theological positions regarding varying issues with the Sacred Name. We can all take whatever Scripture passages we desire and, through a well organized shuffle of them, basically make the Scriptures say whatever we want. But twisting around Scripture to support our theological position as opposed to thoroughly investigating what the Scripture actually says are two very opposite things. FFOZ has done their best to objectively explore this issue and offer a trustworthy resource for those who are inquiring about it. It is straightforward, easy to read, user friendly, and hits all the hot spots in one convenient place.
I pray that each of the above resources will help you to understand this issue better in light of Scriptural truth and historic reality as opposed to modern day theological agendas driven by prideful spirits. May you all be blessed in Yeshua's name.