KINGDOM BIBLE STUDIES
"Teaching the things concerning the kingdom of God..."
TO BE THE LORDíS PRAYER
HALLOWED BE THY NAME
"After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name" (Mat. 6:9).
The name YAHWEH is translated GOD about 300 times, and LORD more than 6,000 times in our English Bible. It is mentioned in scripture more than any other name of God. The Old Testament combines the name YAHWEH with other words to form what are known as compound names or the Yahweh Titles. Several of these are: YAHWEH-YIREH ó Yahweh will see, or Yahweh will provide (Gen. 22:14); YAHWEH-NISSI ó Yahweh my banner (Ex. 17:15); YAHWEH-MEKADDISHKEM ó Yahweh who sanctifies you (Ex. 31:13); YAHWEH-SHALOM ó Yahweh send peace (Judges 6:24); YAHWEH-SABBAOTH ó Yahweh of hosts (I Sam. 1:3); YAHWEH-TSIDKENU ó Yahweh our righteousness (Jer. 23:6); YAHWEH-SHAMMAH ó Yahweh is there (Eze. 48:35); YAHWEH-ELYON ó Yahweh most high (Ps. 7:17); YAHWEH-ROI ó Yahweh my shepherd (Ps. 23:1).
Some other names of God used frequently in scripture are: EL ó the mighty, the strong One; ELOAH ó the living God; EL ELYON ó the Most High; EL SHADDAI ó the almighty, the all-bountiful, nourisher, the breasted One; ADON ó the ruler; ADONIM ó the plural of Adon, carries all the meaning of Adon but to a higher degree; ADONAI ó the Lord.
English is a phonetically oriented language. Our poetry often depends on phonetic symmetry ó rhythm and rhyme. Hebrew poetry, on the other hand, depends more on a symmetry of ideas than a symmetry of sounds. This is one of the reasons why the power of Hebrew poetry comes through in translations. So it is with Hebrew names. They are more oriented toward meanings than toward sounds. In the Bible names are generally descriptive of the person, of his position, some circumstance affecting him, etc. Thus, the "name" often came to stand for the person. This is illustrated by the fact that a Hebrew name may be a word, a phrase, or even a sentence. For example, Penuel means "the face of God". Samuel means "Asked of God". Examples of a name being a sentence are Abijah, "Yah is a Father," and Eliab, "God is a Father". To underline the fact that it is meaning that is important in a Hebrew name rather than the phonetic sound, compare II Samuel 11:3 and I Chronicles 3:5. Both scriptures give the name of the father of Bathsheba, but in the one case he is called Eliam, meaning "God is a kinsman," and in the other case he is called Ammiel, meaning "A kinsman is God". Still another example is king Jehoiachin (II Kings 24:6), who was also known as Jeconiah (Jer. 24:11). There are many other such examples in scripture where peoples name were said in different ways simply because the same thought was expressed in different words, though it meant approximately the same thing. This shows clearly that it was the meaning of the name that was important, not the way it was pronounced.
I cannot emphasize too strongly that the thing of importance is not the spelling or Hebrew pronunciation of Godís names. God never gave Himself a name because it sounded nice or because there were some magical powers in the combination of letters. Godís purpose in a name is itís MEANING! You see, the name YAHWEH is absolutely meaningless in English. If you were to address God as "The Self-Existent," or "The Eternal," you would actually be saying His name in English, rather than merely pronouncing meaningless Hebrew syllables. I know many people who feel they mouth all the correct forms of Godís name, but they know absolutely nothing about Godís name, for they have never entered into relationship with Him IN HIS NATURE REVEALED BY HIS NAME. Godís name is His nature.
The name YAHWEH is derived from the Hebrew verb HAVAH meaning "to be," or "being." This word is almost exactly like the Hebrew verb CHAVAH meaning "to live," or "life." One can readily see the connection between BEING and LIFE. Thus Yahweh means THE SELF-EXISTENT ONE or THE ETERNAL. He is the One who in Himself embodies essential life, permanent existence, derived from no source outside Himself, and absolutely dependent upon no other person, thing, or circumstance for its continuance. Any being whose existence is dependent in any measure upon another, or upon conditions such as food, water, light, air, etc., or even upon some cosmic influence, is not SELF-EXISTENT. This quality inhered originally in Yahweh alone, as it is written, "The Father hath life IN HIMSELF" (Jn. 5:26). That means that His existence is not a derived one, nor a sustained one; not derived from anything nor dependent upon anything, but inherent and eternal within Himself. The verbs "to be" and "to live" from which the name Yahweh comes denote both ESSENTIAL LIFE and a STATE OF BEING. Hence, God is not only eternal Himself, but every aspect of His nature and all His characteristics are as eternal and unchanging as His life!
Anything that is absolutely eternal is not only unending, but is also UNCHANGEABLE. Anything that changes in any way is not eternal, for in the change some characteristic is left behind and a new one acquired. In every change something ends and something else begins. That which dwells in an eternal state knows NO CHANGE. Change is possible only in that which is limited, imperfect, or immature. Yahweh declares of Himself, "I am Yahweh (the Eternal), I CHANGE NOT" (Mal. 3:6), and the inspired apostle says of Him, "With whom there is no variableness, neither shadow of turning" (James 1:17). God is never surprised. God has not learned anything this week, nor last year, nor in the last several trillion years. If God learned one thing today, it would destroy Him. He would no longer be the omniscient One knowing the end from the beginning, for known unto Him are all His works from the foundation of the world. God does not experiment. God does not become stronger, mightier, or increase Himself in any way. God is the omnipotent, omniscient, and eternal One. He CHANGES NOT. He eternally is all that He is without any decrease or increase or fluctuation whatsoever. Ah, He is the ETERNAL GOD, YAHWEH ó the SELF-EXISTENT ONE!
It is a great and blessed fact that Yahweh is the eternal God. Transition, adjustment, change ó these words seem to be constantly with us, until we fain would grasp for something that seems to be stable, solid, enduring. Much of the inner drive for change is simple evidence that man is not satisfied, has not found his completeness in Christ, for "beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that when He shall appear WE SHALL BE LIKE HIM..." (I Jn. 3:2). Here is stability ó immutability ó the quality of His nature remains the same, HE IS THE ETERNAL! And this is the nature of which we would be a partaker, the fullness of which we find in Christ, and through union with Him we shall be changed until we become changeless in the absoluteness of that which He is. He who is eternal cannot be influenced, affected, moved, changed, altered, damaged, destroyed, or improved in any way. He cannot grow tired or old. The character of God is eternal, changeless, unaffected. The love, joy, peace, righteousness, and power of God do not rise and fall, rise and fall, rise and fall. Matters not what happens or what men or devils say or do, the love of God, the nature of God, the purpose of God and the power of
God are steadfast, unmoved, unquenched, undiminished, unaffected, without fluctuation. The eternal existence of God is certain for He is the source of all life. Death cannot touch Him for He is not dependent upon the sustaining power of another, He is Yahweh, the Self-Existent One.
With these lofty thoughts of God in our minds, our hearts respond with joyful accord when Christ in His wisdom shows that it is Godís intention that he who walks in the blessed realm of sonship should be as constant and unchanging as is God Himself. To His disciples Christ spoke these incredible words: "For as the Father HATH LIFE IN HIMSELF; so hath He given to the Son TO HAVE LIFE IN HIMSELF" (Jn. 5:25-26). LIFE IN HIMSELF! This is self-existent life, a life not derived from any source, not dependent upon any sustenance, inherent life! Jesus could stand and declare, "I AM THE LIFE!" The exceeding great wonder of all is that not only did Jesus possess the self-existent life of God, but God has made Him to be "a life-giving Spirit." Truly, "He that hath the Son HATH LIFE," and, "This is the record that God hath given unto us eternal life, and this life is in His Son" (I Jn. 5:11-12). How plain. If the Spirit of Yahweh dwells in us, He imparts THE POWER TO COMMENCE ETERNAL, SELF-EXISTENT LIFE WITHIN US NOW!
THE JEWS AND YAHWEH
It is a clear fact of history that from the time the house of Judah was carried away in captivity to Babylon they laid aside the use of the name Yahweh, through a superstitious dread, but also because the Jews left behind the Hebrew language in the Babylonian captivity, returning to the land of Israel as an Aramaic speaking people ó the language of Babylon. They substituted, therefore, the courtesy title "Adonai," or "Lord." Later the name was written with the consonants of the word Yahweh and the vowel sounds of the word Adonai. And in some time very late in history, probably about the time of the Protestant reformation in Europe, the English word Jehovah evolved from this hybrid spelling, since all "Y" sounds in Hebrew are "J" sounds in English. The history is curious, but it all derived from the Jewsí superstitious refusal to pronounce the Name of God as revealed to them. In substitution for the Hebrew name they also used other titles such as "the Blessed," "the Name," "the Four Letters," and "the Tetragrammaton," also meaning "the Four Letters," referring to the Hebrew spelling of the name ó YHWH. A striking example of this custom of using titles in place of Godís name is afforded us in the dialogue between Jesus and the High Priest: "Art Thou the Son of the Blessed?" Jesus didnít correct the High Priest, telling Him that Godís name is Yahweh ó He merely answered, "I am." Not the Son of Yahweh ó but the Son of "THE BLESSED"! Anything to keep from uttering the name Yahweh!
The third commandment is: "Thou shalt not take the name of Yahweh thy God in vain; for Yahweh will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain." No people could have been more scrupulous in their reverence for the name of God ó the word YAHWEH ó than the Jews. Their scribes wrote it with reverence upon their scrolls, but regarded it as blasphemy to repeat or read it aloud, lest it should become defiled upon their lips. The very Hebrew letters of it were considered sacred, and became a superstitious fetish ó a thing to conjure with. They attributed magical powers to the Name (word) so that it became a talisman or a charm ó indeed, an idol! The name Yahweh, in all of Israel, was pronounced only once a year, and then only by the High Priest when he entered into the Holy of holies on the day of Atonement, Yom Kippur. Whenever the scribes, who copied the scrolls of the scriptures, came to any one of the names of God, they would change the pen and pray and then write the name. Whenever they came to the great unpronounceable name of God, the name of Yahweh, they would stop, bathe, change their clothes, change their pen, confess their sins, pray to God and then, with great reverence, they would dip their pen into the ink only once. They would never dip it again in the midst of the writing of the name. They were commanded that should the king speak to them in the midst of writing that name they were to pay him no heed at all ó so intense was their superstitious reverence for the name Yahweh.
THE SACRED NAME
There is much misleading teaching in these days concerning what is known as the "Sacred Name", and so, let us shine the Light of the Lord upon the matter, so that any darkness of confusion or error might be dispelled, and that His Truth might be seen in all of its glory. No child of God need be uncertain or doubtful about speaking of, and to, the Father in the words of his or her own language. We speak of the Lord God; we speak of Jesus, our Saviour and Lord ó all wonderful words that spring out of the depths of our hearts, and speak volumes of an intimate love and reverence of our heavenly Father and for our Lord Jesus Christ.
Godís name is important! But ó must we, as some claim, use only Hebrew names when speaking of the Father and the Son? Is salvation or true reverence based on the pronunciation of Godís name in a certain language, or on a certain set of sounds? The notion that we must use only Godís Hebrew names is of no ancient origin. Those names were not used by the early Church, nor by the Church fathers, nor by the great men of God through the ages. Actually, the Hebrew-names teaching had its beginnings less than sixty years ago, in the late 1930ís. At that time, proponents of the idea began to claim that it is gross sin to say the name Jesus Christ, which is an anglicized spelling of the Greek words Iesous and Christos. Godís name, they alleged, must be spoken only in Hebrew. This is an important prerequisite for entering Godís Kingdom, they claimed. These same few teach that the sacred name of our heavenly Father is Yahweh and that the name of the Son of God is Yahshua. The word Elohim, too, must be used instead of our English equivalent word God. They declare that when we pray or speak about God and Christ, we must use only these Hebrew names. It is wrong, they say, to translate the names of the Deity into English or any other language. In other words, we may freely read or discuss the Bible as translated into the English language in all terms except the names of God or Jesus Christ. Then we must speak Hebrew. It is alright to say Mary instead of Miryam, Israel instead of Yisrael, Joseph instead of Yosef, and Jerusalem instead of Yerushalayim. But using an anglicized form or substitute for the names Yahweh and Yahshua, we are told, could deny us salvation or a place of honor in the Kingdom of God! Are Hebrew names the only ones acceptable to God? Is He insulted by anything else?
Iím quite sure the name "Yahweh" does not convey to me the identical same thing it conveyed to the ancient Hebrews. I did not hear the word until I was in my early twenties. When I heard it for the first time, I was not impressed. In fact, the word did not even sound like a name. It was, for all practical purposes, meaningless to me. The word "God," on the other hand, is a deeply meaningful word, as are the words "Lord," Eternal," and "Father." When I hear the word God, or when I say or think the word, I think of the Great Creator. The word means Eternal Ruler of the universe; it means The Almighty. It means God. Think about it! You can kneel in the presence of your heavenly Father and say, "My Father, my God..." with a certain depth of genuine emotion and meaning ó for the words "Father" and "God" are meaningful to you. But when you pray, "O Yahweh, my Elohim..." something personal, deep, and intimate is missing. If your mind works anything like mine, the English terms enable you to express yourself before God with a greater depth of relationship than do the Hebrew words. So, what was appropriate for Moses may not necessarily be appropriate for you ó as far as words are concerned.
There are three basic assumptions behind the "Sacred Name" idea. The first is that Hebrew is Godís language. It is somehow special and holy. The second is that the New Testament was written in Hebrew or Aramaic ó thus the originals were not contaminated by Greek paganism. The final assumption is that the correct pronunciation of YHWH has not been lost in the mists of time. If any of these assumptions are false, then the doctrine of the Sacred Name crumbles.
Most Sacred Name people believe that Hebrew is a special language ó the language of God ó or at least the language He has chosen and ordained in a peculiar way on earth. They believe it is a sin to translate Godís name into any other language because it thus becomes "paganized". The question follows ó Is Hebrew Godís special language, or a normal, humanly developed language that just happened to already be the language of the first people God chose to reveal Himself to and choose for His unique purpose ó namely, the fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? All authorities on linguistics and archaeology agree that Hebrew was no isolated or divine language in Old Testament times. It was exactly what Isaiah calls it ó the language of Canaan. "In that day shall five cities in the land of Egypt speak the language of Canaan, and swear to Yahweh of hosts" (Isa. 19:18). Hebrew is called the language of Canaan because there were only minor dialect variations between Phoenician, the language of Tyre, Sidon and Gebal, and the language of the Canaanites in the land of Canaan, as well as the other nations living there. These all, as well as the Moabites who lived east of the Dead Sea, could understand one another without the aid of interpreters. As you can see by reading the history in your own Bible, from the very moment that the children of Israel entered Canaan and began the conquest of the land, there was never any problem in communicating with the cursed inhabitants of the land. They conversed freely with one and all. As the magazine Biblical Archaeology has clearly pointed out, THEY ALL SPOKE THE EQUIVALENT OF HEBREW!
One of the common Old Testament names for God is the Hebrew word EL. EL creates real problems for the Sacred Name people. The name EL was in use among the pagan Canaanites long before Moses penned the first five books of the Bible. In the cuneiform religious tablets excavated at Ras Shamra (an ancient Canaanite city north of Israel), for example, EL (El the Bull) is described as the head of the Canaanite pantheon of gods, husband of Asherah and father of all the other gods. If it is a sin for us to use the English word God because pagan Druids used it to refer to their idols, or the word Lord because the name of the pagan god Baal meant "Lord," then, by the same reasoning it is also a sin to use the Hebrew words Elohim, El, and all the other forms of Godís name containing El. Also notice that the Hebrew word Elohim is used 240 times throughout the inspired Old Testament to refer to pagan, heathen idols! This usage by the Holy Spirit Himself shows that it is just as permissible to use the English word God today for both our heavenly Father and for pagan idols. When used of our Father it is the meaning that is important, not the language, spelling, or pronunciation.
The Sacred Name avoidance of the word "Lord" is very curious because the Old Testament, which most Sacred Name believers use in preference to the New Testament, calls Yahweh Lord on several occasions. Ezekiel 2:4 is an example of this. Here the words "Yahweh" and "Adonai" (Lord) are used together to form one name or title ó Lord Yahweh. Since the Old Testament uses the word "El" for God and "Adonai" for Lord, and these words are of human origin, and anciently used also by the pagans, how can it be wrong to use the English equivalent of these words today? EL or YAHWEH or ADONAI mean little to todayís reader, whereas God and Lord are pregnant with meaning to English speaking people. The Sacred Name believers cite Hosea 2:16-17 as proof that it is an abomination to use the word Lord. It says, "And it shall be at that day, saith the Lord, that thou shalt call me Ishi; and shalt call me no more Baali (my Lord). For I will take away the names of Baalim out of her mouth, and they shall no more be remembered by their name." The passage clearly states that in the day that the Lordís people no longer call Him "Baali" they will call Him "Ishi." And yet ó I have never met the person who goes around calling God "Ishi"! Those who use Yahweh and Yahshua do not go about calling God Ishi. They do not pray to "Ishi," or cast out devils by calling over them "Ishi," or heal the sick in the name of "Ishi." Ishi is the intimate Hebrew word that could have just as well been translated "husband." Furthermore, while "Baali" does indeed mean "my Lord" in the sense of a Master or a Husband, Baal in English is NOT "LORD" ó it is BAAL! And in Hebrew that name has many compound forms just as Yahweh has many compound forms. And the fact that none of those compound forms of Baal anciently used by Israel in their idolatry is used by us today IS THE PROOF THAT GOD HAS DONE EXACTLY WHAT HE SAID HE WOULD DO ó HE HAS TAKEN THE NAMES OF BAALIM OUT OF OUR MOUTHS!
Though the vast majority of the Old Testament was inspired in the Hebrew language, Daniel and Ezra wrote portions of their books in Aramaic or Syriac, the prevalent language spoken throughout the Persian Empire and elsewhere during their time. It had replaced Hebrew as the language of common speech of the Jews. When these men of God referred to the Creator in those passages, did they use the old Hebrew names, or did they translate them into Aramaic? Nowhere in the Aramaic passages do we find the names YHWH or ELOHIM. Those who have examined the manuscripts tell us that in dozens of places the writers rendered the Hebrew names for God into the Aramaic word Elah. That is the proof, right out of the inspired record itself, that the Holy Ghost approves the translation of the names of God into the language spoken by the various peoples of earth!
But what about the New Testament books? The original inspired language of the New Testament was Greek. Greek was virtually a universal language in the time of Christ and the apostles, widely understood by both Jews and Gentiles. Much of the New Testament was written by the apostle Paul, the apostle sent to the Greek-speaking nations who did not know Hebrew or Aramaic. When Paul wrote in Greek to the people who spoke Greek, did he pause in mid sentence to switch from Greek to Hebrew to write Yahweh or Yahshua when faced with a sacred name? Never! Paul invariably used the Greek word for God, theos, and the word for Lord, kurios. And he used the Greek name Iesous for Jesus. And so did the other writers of the New Testament books, as inspired by the Holy Spirit. In 665 places in the New Testament, the apostles translated the Hebrew word YHWH into the Greek word kurios. THERE IS NOT ONE NEW TESTAMENT GREEK MANUSCRIPT WITH THE NAMES OF GOD WRITTEN IN HEBREW!
In the face of these clear facts, the Sacred Name proponents have no choice but to deny that the New Testament was originally written in Greek. They assert ó wrongly ó that the whole of the New Testament was originally written in Aramaic (some even say Hebrew!), and only later translated into Greek. At the time of this alleged translation, they claim, the sacred Hebrew names were wrongly removed and pagan names substituted. THE BURDEN OF PROOF IS ON THEM. The evidence? There is none! For it is a totally false and contrived notion, devised out of necessity to justify a false premise! The Aramaic version of the New Testament available today is clearly a later translation from the original inspired Greek. The only copies of the original New Testament writings that have been preserved are in Greek ó none in Aramaic or Hebrew. Nobody on earth can produce one single "original" copy in those languages!
Furthermore, there is no doubt that the Greek of the New Testament is inspired of God, for it is perfect in every way, including numerically. Therefore, as the Greek word kurios is used in the New Testament in quoting from the Old Testament, it demonstrates again that without doubt it is perfectly right and proper to TRANSLATE THE NAMES AND TITLES OF GOD FROM ONE LANGUAGE INTO ANAOTHER. Again, as the Greek of the New Testament is inspired of God, we know that the Greek word Iesous is inspired, which is used, of course, to translate the Old Testament name Yahshua. As someone has said, the numeric design in the Greek New Testament is not a mere curiosity. We find that the numeric value of the name Jesus is 888, whereas the name of His satanic counterpart is 666. Eight is the number symbolic of the new order, resurrection, regeneration. In Isaiah 53:10 it states that "all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God." The numeric value of the phrase "salvation of our God" in Greek is 888. Such examples could be multiplied hundreds of times. Obviously this is by DIVINE ARRANGEMENT, for no other Greek writings bear these marks of numeric design. Can we not see by this that Iesous IS the inspired name of Yahshua in Greek? In English, we obtain the name Joshua from the Hebrew, and the name Jesus from the Greek, all having the power of the same meaning ó Saviour! Blessed be HIS wonderful name! No matter what language it is in! While Hebrew was the language, under God, of the times of the Old Covenant, Greek was the language chosen by God to set down and to reveal the glorious truths of the Gospel of Christ ó the New Covenant. The time for the Hebrew language had passed with the Old Covenant. Its time, no matter the opinions and efforts of men, will never come again. The Hebrew language and the Old Covenant are inextricably and forever linked! But in the final analysis, the Hebrew language is no different from any other, for the Hebrew language is not the language of Heaven. God is a Spirit, and the language of Heaven is neither Hebrew nor Greek, but a spiritual language that can be known only in and by the Spirit. It is a communication from mind to mind, from spirit to spirit, in a realm beyond the languages of man. To speak of God as having names in the sense in which men have names is to limit Him as if He were a man, but He is an infinite Spirit who has deigned to reveal the many sides of His nature in the words of man, be it in one language or another!
In addition to these facts, there is acknowledged disagreement among Sacred Name writers and movements about the correct Hebrew form of Godís name. I have read a number of Sacred Name books and articles through the years and have found all the following (and more!) given as the one and only "correct" and "inspired" form of the name: YAHWEH, YEHWEH, YAHVEH, JAHVAH, YAHWOH, YAHVE, YEHVOH, YAHAWEY, YAHAWAH and YEWE. Each has his "proof" and thinks he, and he alone, is right! A dear brother wrote that he has six Sacred Name Bibles and not one of them agrees! Why? Simply because the true pronunciation was LOST through all the centuries when it was not used by the Jews, ten-tribed Israel, or anyone else. Unrealized by many, Hebrew words consist of consonants, and no vowels. The original Hebrew of Godís name is spelled simply YHWH, not Yahweh. Only by personally hearing the word pronounced could one know what vowel sounds should be in it. I speak some Hebrew and I personally know how confusing this can be. In general terms, I cannot correctly pronounce any word I see written in Hebrew unless I already know the word, what it is and what it means.
Since the pronunciation of Godís name in Hebrew has been lost for the past two and a half millenniums, it is as though God deliberately hid the "letter" of His name ó that we might come to know Him by the Spirit! As a brother has written: "We may sum this up by saying that God gave the name YHWH to Moses as a temporary measure. When it had served its purpose, He obliterated its memory in three steps. (1) He allowed the Jews to have a spurious reverence for it, so that they did not dare pronounce it. (2) He caused Hebrew to be written without vowels, so that it could not be fully recorded, and (3) He did not allow it to be transliterated into Greek or any other language while its pronunciation was still known." If the correct phonetics of His name were so important ó indeed, if our very salvation depended upon it; if our entrance into the High Calling of God in His Kingdom depended upon it ó then we are of all men most miserable. And, if we are blaspheming God by mispronouncing His name, or dishonoring Him by not using the Hebrew form of His name, is it not true that all the Sacred Name people are just as guilty as anyone else with the possible exception one group? And who knows for certain which group that might be? It is like the law, "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all" (James 2:10). Ah, my beloved brethren, if we pronounce the Sacred Name right ó with the exception of one vowel sound ó we have Godís name just as wrong as those who call Him Jehovah or Lord. In fact, Jehovah may be closer to the correct form than some of the Sacred Name forms listed above!
The solution lies not in the "letter" of His name but in the meaning of His name ó understood by the Spirit! The work of God in our lives is not based on pronunciation! Those who would worship the sound of a name ó treating it with superstitious and mystical reverence ó make an idol out of that sound. Thinking they have some gift of greater revelation, they actually miss the whole point and intent of the scriptures, and engender needless strife and division. Remember the words of Jesus in Matthew 7:21: "Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father." Performance, not pronunciation, is of paramount importance to God. We honor His name by walking out His nature and character as His sons, not by mouthing a certain sound. Do not be misled by the naive and misguided "scholarship" of those who would make a "show of wisdom." Their teachings are not substantiated by the Word of God, but are based on a multitude of woefully misapplied scriptures.
There is a powerful lesson about the name of the Lord in the life of Dr. Thomas Wyatt, an apostle of faith, mightily used of God in the earlier days of this century. I met him in the days of the great Latter Rain move of God. The well-known author, Basil Miller, in his biography of Thomas Wyatt, records the events in Wyattís life that immediately followed his conversion. He says, "Though Thomas Wyatt had found spiritual elation, the physical pain and body torment steadily increased. It was difficult for him to bend. Only with severe anguish could he carry the duties of the larger farm he rented the following year. Every move, every action was a knife stuck into his vitals. It became so serious that he decided to go to Rochester, Minnesota, and enter the Mayo Clinic. Dr. Mayo examined him personally, tested the flexibility of his back, asked him to bend over, twisted him from side to side. Only with great difficulty could Tom put one foot in front of the other as he staggered along.
"He was drawn and haggard. The doctor, after a complete examination, said, ĎThe cushions between your vertebrae are causing your pain. The X-rays show that your vertebrae are all growing together. That is why you cannot straighten up. We recommend that you go back home and set your house in order. Your chances of living are slight. If you live, you will be a cripple throughout life.í Dr. Mayo suggested that Tom return to Des Moines and have a specialist place him in a cast from neck to hips; this would have to be left on for eighteen months. He added, ĎOtherwise you will be drawn over completely until your backbone is solidified and you will not be able to stand erect ó if you live.í Back to Des Moines Tom went, and three times he attempted to see the specialist recommended by Dr. Mayo. But on each trip something intervened that made it impossible for the doctor to encast Tomís body.
"Returning home, the emotional strain proved too great, and Tom went to bed. For eighteen months he was bedfast, a total invalid. A cousin came to oversee the work of the farm. Day after day the patientís strength waned. Despite the fact that these were days spent in communion with the Lord, there was no thought or idea of calling on the great Physician for a healing hand to be laid upon Tomís body. He became weaker as the months passed, until at length the twisted, pain-racked body could endure no more. Tom sensed death lurking in the shadows. He had been sinking for several days, and finally went into a coma. His relatives had been called, and they gathered to be with him in his last hours. Funeral arrangements were made. Since the local newspaper was published weekly, the editor thought it wise to print Tomís obituary in the current issue, giving the day of his death, and the time of the funeral. The night before his supposed death-day, Tom dropped into a deep coma...then God stepped in with the miracle of Thomas Wyattís healing.
"While his relatives were out of the room, Tom wakened from an eighteen-hour death coma. Utterly helpless, physically wasted, death appearing and inviting, he looked up and was touched by the finger of God. Regaining consciousness, Tomís eyes were fixed upon the ceiling. He lay there convinced he was dying. But he did not seem to care. In fact, he actually welcomed death. He had lived in pain so long. Life had been hard, filled with suffering and dire need. He felt that these were his last conscious hours. He had no regret at leaving loved ones, for he was tired of lifeís toilsome road. Then out of the eternities came a clear and distinct Voice. The Voice seemed to come from everywhere. In a firm and quietly-spoken tone the words of the Lord sounded: ĎI AM THE LORD THAT HEALETH THEE.í
"How he reached deliveranceís blessed mount he had no idea, but he sensed the rarefied atmosphere of the Supernatural. He had always believed God from the instant Christ had saved him, and now he was possessed by an instinctive urge to act upon this overwhelming truth spoken by the Lord. Shortly the relatives returned to the room. As they approached the bed they saw that he had regained consciousness. They leaned over, and in a faint voice Tom whispered, ĎThe Lord has come and healed me.í Tom had lain in bed without any overt motions for eighteen months. Now he asked his relatives to lift him up. He wanted to sit on the edge of the bed. When they protested, Tom demanded that they lift him up. As they lifted him, thousands of pain-needles shot through his body, and he fell over in a dead faint. They picked him up from the floor and laid him back on the bed, thinking this was the end. But Tom did not sink into another coma, though he remained helpless throughout the day and night. It was evident that the death power which had visited him earlier was broken and he had been delivered. Though he could not move, his heart was filled with joy unspeakable and full of glory.
"Tom asked to be taken to the table to eat the noonday meal with the family. He was lifted from the bed, carried to the table, and set into a chair. The second day was a repetition of the first. Tom went back to the table for three meals. The return of strength was speedy after that, for faith had motivated action, and action had evidenced faith. For thirty days faith pushed Tom into act after act, until at the end of a month, not a trace of the old sickness remained. Having lived in the Bible and experienced Christís marvelous transforming and healing power, Tom Wyatt would soon be ready to carry the message of total deliverance to all mankind. He could not pass by suffering humanity, as the priest and Levite had done, when he himself had experienced the warm fellowship of the Good Samaritan in balming his broken body" ó end quote.
The point I beseech you to consider is the manner in which the Lord Himself spoke to Thomas Wyatt. The Lord says in Exodus 15:26, "If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of Yahweh thy God, and wilt do that which is right in my sight...I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am Yahweh that healeth thee." The phrase in our English Bibles, "I am the Lord that healeth thee," appears in the Hebrew text as one of the great compound redemptive names Yahweh. It is YAHWEH-ROPHEKHA ó "I am Yahweh your healer." God certainly know who He is! And, while in the Hebrew He says that He is YAHWEH that heals, yet when this same ever-living God spoke sovereignly and audibly to poor Thomas Wyatt on his death bed, He did not say, "I am YAHWEH that healeth thee," but, "I am THE LORD that healeth thee!" God Himself called Himself "the Lord" and thereby honored the title most often used of Him in the English language. If "Lord" is the name of "Baal," as some contend, and is an abomination from which we must be cleansed, then the Lord Himself certainly made a serious mistake and a grave error in calling Himself "the LORD that healeth thee." I could cite scores of examples like this one of which I have first-hand knowledge. I am not aware of any supernatural revelation of the Lord to any non-Hebrew-speaking man or woman in this age of the Spirit in which God identified Himself as "Yahweh" or in which the Lord Jesus announced Himself as "Yahshua." He could certainly do so should He choose, and may have on some occasion, but it is almost unknown in the recorded history of Godís dealings with men.
JESUS IS YAHWEH!
We ought not to be ashamed of calling Christ our "God," because He is Yahweh; He stands upon earth and calls to us "I AM!" And we need not make a big issue out of it, but fall down as did the disciples of old and cry, "My Lord, and my God!" In Him we know the living God, the Father in heaven. "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him" (Jn. 1:18). Jesus was, therefore, the FULL REVELATION of the INVISIBLE GOD who indwelt Him. The Amplified Bible reads, "No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son...who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him ó He has revealed Him, brought Him out where He can be seen...He has made Him known." So God put Himself into His Son to make Himself visible and available to man.
Jesus Himself said it this way: "If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know Him, and have seen Him. Philip saith unto Him, Lord, show us the Father, and it sufficeth us. Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? He that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou, then, Show us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works" (Jn. 14:7-10).
Now let us read Isaiah 9:6. "For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given...His name shall be called...the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father." It does not say mighty man, but Mighty God. A little child is called the Mighty God. All Christians agree with the prophecy of this verse. The child mentioned here refers to the child born in the stable in Bethlehem, who is not only named the Mighty God, but also the Everlasting Father. As a child born to us, He is called the Mighty God; as a Son given to us, He is called the Everlasting Father. This is very strange, is it not? When the child is called the Mighty God, is He the child or God? And, when the Son is called the Everlasting Father, is He the Son or the Father? If you try to figure it out you cannot do it. You must take it as a fact unless, of course, you do not believe the scriptures. If you believe the Word God has revealed through His holy prophets, you must accept the fact that since the child is called the Mighty God, it means the child IS the Mighty God; and since the Son is called the Father, it means the Son IS the Father! If the child is not the Mighty God, how could the child be called the Mighty God? And if the Son is not the Father, how could the Son be called the Father? Then how many Gods do we have? We have only one God, because the child Jesus is the Mighty God, the Son is the Everlasting Father, and "the Lord (Jesus) is that Spirit" (II Cor. 3:17).
Godís name is written in Jesus. It would little avail to ask how we know the Fatherís name is written in Jesus. That would be like asking how we know that Beethovenís "Hymn to Joy" is joyous. If a man were to say, "It is not joyous to me," he would not condemn the music; he would only reveal his own morbidness. The name of the Son of God is Jesus. That is His complete name. That is His correct name. That is His full name. The name of the eternal Word of God who stepped across the stars to the planet earth to be born in the little village of Bethlehem, is Jesus. The angelic messenger appeared to Mary and announced, "Thou shalt call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins" (Mat. 1:21). The name Jesus is exactly the same as the Old Testament name Joshua. Joshua or Jesus ó itís the same name. In Hebrew it is Yahshua ó YAH is Yahweh, and SHUA means salvation. In the Old Testament salvation is of Yahweh. Hundreds of passages speak of this. But now it is no longer just Yahweh, but Yahweh-Saviour ó Jesus! So when the mighty Gabriel appeared he said, "Call the child that which will be descriptive or characteristic of what He is going to be and do. Call His name that which will describe His accomplishment." The messenger said, "Thou shalt call His name Jesus, or thou shalt call His name THE SALVATION OF YAHWEH, for He shall save His people...call His name YAH THE SAVIOUR because He is going to save and He is YAH." How few realize the fullness that is in our Saviourís name! Once we see that Jesus is a compound name of Yahweh, adapted to the new age, we will no longer wonder why the name Yahweh has almost disappeared from Godís people. It occurs about a thousand times in the name of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ! Jesus said, "I have come in my Fatherís name" (Jn. 5:43). To "come in the name of someone" is a Semitic way of speaking which means "to bring the name of someone." So Jesus says again, "I have manifested Thy name" (Jn. 17:6,26). Jesus did all His works "in my Fatherís name" and He prays, "Holy Father, keep them in Thy name which Thou hast given meí (Jn. 17:11). The Father gave Jesus His name ó His nature, His honor, His authority, His identity ó not merely the title "Yahweh."
I know many people are struggling with the different names of God ó is it Lord, Jehovah, Yahweh, Yehovah or something else, all of which wrangling is stupidity and ignorance. The name of God has ever been a progressive unfolding. "And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am Yahweh: and I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of El Shaddai, but by my name Yahweh was I not known unto them" (Ex. 6:2-3). So many suppose that "Yahweh" is the FINAL REVELATION OF GODíS NAME. Not so! God has progressively revealed Himself by different names. Think! Abraham, Isaac and Jacob did not even know God as Yahweh! The very first sentence of the Bible reveals God to us as Elohim ó the Creator. The Bible then reveals to us God as Yahweh Elohim ó the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and the One who formed and gave life to Adam. The Bible reveals to us God as El Elyon ó whom all nations worship and of whom all nations seem to have the "God consciousness." The next great stage of the self revelation of God is as El Shaddai ó the nourisher, the breasted One, sustaining the fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The next stage is the further revelation of God as Yahweh ó the eternal, self-existent Lord and Redeemer of Israel. The next great stage is the manifestation of God in the Person of Yahshua ó Yahweh as salvation unto all the ends of the earth. It was Godís plan from the beginning to reveal Himself from glory to glory, from name to name.
The people of Israel knew that there was only one true and living God ó Yahweh. But the idea that God was a loving God was alien to them for the most part. Until Jesus came even they did not know the heart of the Father. They knew God according to superstition and after the demands and penalties of the Law. To them Yahweh was the Law-giver, harsh, demanding, vindictive, throwing lightning bolts off of Sinai. The Old Testament world stood before the thought of God as we sometimes stand before a summer thunder-storm ó black, flashing with lightning, terrible ó and with fear and awe they bowed in the dust. They conceived that God was exacting and full of wrath. God punished people and destroyed all His enemies. But that God was tender, that God loved them? God would accept their sacrifices, certainly. God would even put up with them, and they would propitiate Him and appease Him (or so they thought!), but they did not in most cases truly love God.
God purposed from the beginning to reveal Himself BEYOND YAHWEH. And now He has delivered the Kingdom to His Son, Jesus Christ, who is the Mighty God and the Everlasting Father. Oh, the mystery of it! Oh, the wonder of it! Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, of things in the earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" (Phil. 2:9-11). The King James version says that God has given Jesus "a" name above every name; but that is not how it is in the Greek. The Greek has the definite article ó "the name" above every name. This title, ĎTHE NAME," is a very common Hebrew title denoting office, rank, dignity, as well as honor and worship bestowed on the one on whom this name was conferred. Then THE NAME is revealed ó "that at THE NAME OF JESUS every knee should bow..." And the wonderful name of Jesus is THE NAME above every other name both in heaven and in earth! Think of it! That certainly includes the name Yahweh. If the name of Jesus is THE NAME that is above every other name in heaven, then God has given Jesus the name that is above Yahweh! God Himself, yes, Yahweh Himself, has highly exalted Jesus and given Him the name above every other name anywhere. There no name of God that He has ever revealed His nature in that is as high as the mighty name of our Lord Jesus Christ. In other words, there is no revelation of Godís nature that is as high as the nature of God revealed in Jesus. Jesus is Godís nature revealed in its fullest. And that is what sonship is.
The consciousness of the power of Godís name was in the heart of every faithful Israelite. A young man was not afraid to stand before Goliath and say, "Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of Yahweh of hosts" (I Sam. 17:45). That same young man, afterward becoming the "sweet singer of Israel," was inspired to exhort every son of Israel: "Praise the name of Yahweh. Blessed be the name of Yahweh from this time forth and for evermore. From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same Yahwehís name is to be praised" (Ps. 113:1-3). As blessed and all-prevailing as was the Divine Name in the time of David, and even when Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, a prayer offered today only in the name of Yahweh will rise no higher than the ceiling. You cannot get to God in the name of Yahweh!
There is authority in the name of Jesus because He inherited it. We cannot measure the vastness of the power in the name of Jesus without realizing that He inherited that name from God the Father. "God...hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son, whom He hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also He made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; being made so much better than the angels, as He hath BY INHERITANCE OBTAINED A MORE EXCELLENT NAME THAN THEY" (Heb. 1:1-4). When we think about the name of Jesus we know that Jesus is the brightness of Godís glory, the express image of His person, the very outshining of God the Father, the heir of all things ó and He has inherited HIS NAME. The greatness of His name is inherited from His Father. So the power of His name can only be measured by the power of God.
Those who cling to the name Yahweh are living under the Old Testament economy of God with fleshly Israel under the law. The administration of heaven and earth has been changed. When the Holy Spirit descended from heaven upon the disciples on the day of Pentecost in the city of Jerusalem, everyone was commanded to "repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins" (Acts 2:38). From that day forward, among all nations, the great God ordained that "all things should be done, whether in word or in deed, in the name of Jesus Christ" (Col. 3:17). Salvation was preached in His name. "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). Devils were cast out in His name. Prayers were prayed in His name. The sick were healed in His name. Mighty signs and wonders were wrought in His name. Men called upon His name. Jesus came and put a face on God. All the Yahweh names, the compound redemptive names of Yahweh ó all of these find their fulfillment in Jesus. Yahweh said, "I am Yahweh that healeth thee." "Yahweh-Healer" was His name. "But in the New Testament it is: "In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!" Jesus is Yahweh-Rophekha, Yahweh the healer.
I write to you today of the power of the name of Jesus Christ. It is the name of omnipotence for our Lord Himself declared, "All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth" (Mat. 28:18). In that name the lowliest and most vile of Godís prodigal children may be saved and transformed. With the name of Jesus on their lips, martyrs have calmly and joyfully faced death by fire and sword. In His name multitudes have lived their lives of service, cheerfully doing their rounds of mercy and goodness. In the name of Jesus the first lisping prayers of infant hearts arise. The name of Jesus has comforted and sustained broken, bleeding hearts in hours of darkest sorrow. In His name the most glorious victories of faith have been won. The name of Jesus is all-conquering. It is the name that is above every other name in heaven and on earth. Therefore it is higher than the name Yahweh, and higher even than the name El Elyon! That name is called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. It is in this name that every knee shall bow and every tongue swear allegiance ó of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things in the underworld. All hail the power of Jesusí name!!
And remember, precious friend of mine, there is no need to say the name in Hebrew. It is not at all necessary to speak the name of Yahshua, although His name in Hebrew is just as precious and powerful to those who speak Hebrew as Jesus is to us. The greatest proof, to my mind, is the authority, power and value GOD HIMSELF PLACES IN THE NAME. I have seen devils come out in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. I have seen cripples walk at the name of Jesus. I have seen every manner of sickness and disease healed in the name of Jesus. I have seen signs and wonders wrought in the name of the Lord Jesus. Untold millions of people have been saved, cleansed, delivered and transformed by faith in the name of Jesus Christ. All the works accomplished in all the great revivals in Germany, Switzerland, Wales, England, the United States, South Africa, and many other nations over the past centuries were done in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. It should be obvious to all that GOD HAS HIGHLY HONORED THAT NAME and that DEMONS RESPECT AND TREMBLE AT THAT NAME and that even dead men have lived again at the mention of THAT NAME. I have personally had hundreds of prayers answered in response to calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. And now men refuse to speak that mighty name, and tell us it is sin to use that name. Shame on them! I do not hesitate to tell you that I have witnessed no special authority, power, life or holiness manifested through any of my friends who insist on using the names of God in their Hebrew form. Nothing I have seen done by the use of those names has even approached the outer court of the power I have witnessed and experienced at the name of Jesus. So you are too late, my friend, to convince me of that. I have failed to see the value or power gained by reverting to those names.
Let us exalt the glorious name of Jesus Christ the Lord! Let us with bowed heads and worshipful spirits say with deepest emotion, "Hallowed by Thy name!" Let us exalt Him to that resplendent heaven where He sits enthroned on the throne of the Father. Let us exalt Him as the image of God, the only visibility of God, God manifested in the flesh, Emmanuel, God with us, the Man in whom dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily ó of whom we are members in particular and brothers in the great family of God. Let us exalt Him and put His name above every other name in which God has ever revealed Himself; and above every name that has ever been spoken into human ear or uttered by mortal lips. Let us shout it out in song, roll it forth on organ swell, blast it out in trumpet call, and proclaim on the lips of eloquence that His name is above every name; that God the infinite Father has exalted that name above all of His names and has ordained that in the name of Jesus all shall bow in worshipful adoration in heaven and in earth.
In closing let me add one more thought. The name of Jesus is more than the letters J-E-S-U-S. The power of a name, the life of a name, the reality of a name is not in the letters or pronunciation but in the meaning it embodies. Name means nature. It is the NATURE of Jesus Christ that has been highly exalted. He has been given a SAVING NATURE that is above every other nature in heaven and in earth. Every living creature possesses a nature. The dog barks and the cat meows because of their nature. There is the elephant nature, the lion nature, the horse nature. There are the natures of mighty angels and pernicious devils, and the nature of Adam ó mankind. There may be myriads of creatures on other planets in far away galaxies of the universe, I do not doubt it for one moment. But the man Christ Jesus has been highly exalted into a Nature that is grander and more glorious and far superior to the nature of any other other being throughout the vastnesses of infinity. It is the divine nature. It is the active side of the divine nature, a nature that is not content to just BE what it is, but reaches forth to impart to creation all that it is. It is the divine SAVING NATURE. This is the man Christ Jesusí new name ó His NEW NATURE. In this name is the hope of sonship and the ministry of the manifested sons of God. These sons are destined to deliver creation from the bondage of corruption and this can only be accomplished by the saving nature of God. That is the highest expression of all that He is. That is His new name.
"And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns; and He had a name written, that no man knew (or had experienced), but He Himself" (Rev. 19:11-12). And to the overcomer it is promised: "Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem: and I will write upon him my new name" (Rev. 3:12).
The key to receiving His new name is overcoming. The starting point in overcoming is with the little things, the little foxes that spoil the vine. You will be defeated if you start with the giants. You must first slay your bear and kill your lion before you take on Goliath. Start overcoming the little things, those little quirks and idiosyncrasies in your personality ó those things you think, those words you speak, those attitudes you manifest from time to time, facial expressions, body movements, gestures, slothfulness, sins of omission ó these little things that fall short and miss the mark of the nature of the Christ. God wants us to be changed! We will never be changed just by hearing the message and giving assent to it. We must take on ó appropriate ó a whole new nature that is absolutely contrary to the human nature. Iím not talking about warring with the "old man" or wrestling with the "devil." Iím talking about so putting on a new nature until all that is contrary to that nature is put to death. Iím talking about so putting on a new nature until it becomes natural to be supernatural.
HE must increase, WE must decrease ó and it must be in that order. You do not die in order to live, you live in order to die. By accentuating the positive you eliminate the negative. By turning on the light you drive away the darkness. By the infusion of life you abolish death. Truth destroys error. Reality negates fantasy. That is the law of conformation into the image of Christ. You fill your mind with the Truth of Christ, you flood your life with the Word of God, and "at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow and every tongue confess." The "name" denotes the "nature." If you have partaken of the nature of Jesus then every knee within you must bow before that nature and every tongue, every voice within you, must confess that Jesus Christ is LORD to the glory of God the Father.
My beloved, until this happens within us we are not Saviours to the world. We can talk about manifested sonship all we please, we can confess it, name it and claim it, teach it and preach it, blab it and grab it, and pride ourselves in our superior calling ó but until the nature of Jesus rules within we are not one whit beyond the religious world around us. Every enemy within must be routed and cast out by the power of His glorious name, His glorious nature. Do you want power to cast out devils? Begin by having the devils cast out of you. Thatís the starting point, you see. You say, "I donít have any devils in me." That may be true ó but it is nothing short of amazing when the right testing, temptation, problem or pressure comes our way how many devils can be raised up in us! Sometimes it takes very little. But at the nature of Jesus every knee bows and every tongue confesses His Lordship within. "Believe on the name of the Son of God," the scripture says. But the Greek is a little more definitive: "Believe into the name of the Son of God." This means more than believing on the name of the man Jesus who lived two thousand years ago. It speaks of believing into His nature so that His nature becomes our nature. It is putting on the Lord Jesus Christ. It is hallowing His name in our lives. It is raising up and exalting the nature of Christ within. May God make it reality to all those blessed ones who read these lines today! HALLOWED BE THY NAME!
To be continued... J. PRESTON EBY