Yeshua to Jesus
One of the big mysteries in Christianity and Messianic/Natsari Judaism is the alleged cover up of Yeshua the Messiah’s Hebrew Name. There are a lot of religious conspiracy theorists out there who claim this. I use to believe it too because of all the Anti-Semetic and Anti-Nomian garbage that has made its way into the English versions of the Brit Chadasha (New Testament). But I have figured it out.
We know that the Messiah’s Name, “Yeshua” is shortened form of the Hebrew, “Yehoshuah (Joshua)” but why in the Greek Septuagint they used “Joshua” but for the Greek New Testament they call, Yeshua/Joshua; Jesus!?
I am by no means fluent in Koine Greek or Hebrew, whether ancient or modern… Heck, I’m not the greatest of my mother tongue, English! But I have taken Koine Greek and Biblical Hebrew in College and I am increasing my knowledge and proficiency in the languages one day at a time and I discovered how they got Jesus out of Yeshua.
Since Yeshua means, “Yah’s Salvation.” I use to say, “Why not make the Greek name of Messiah, “Theo-Sotar” (which is Greek for “G-d’s Salvation”) to symbolize Yeshua’s Name in the Greek? But I believe I have discovered why the translators did what they did, and it wasn’t to hide the Hebrew Name of Messiah, nor was it to secretly link Messiah to Zeus as I have heard and read by many Messianic/Natsari believing circles. On the contrary, it was, I believe to distinguish Messiah’s Name from others.
My thoughts are confirmed by this author of this website:
“The reason that the interpreters made the mistake is because the Greek translation of Jesus and Joshua are exactly the same. The same translation is used in the Septuagint (for the name of Joshua) as in the Greek scriptures of the New Testament. I'm just guessing that somewhere along the line, someone thought that the Lord's name should be distinguishable from the other "Joshuas" in the Bible (because there are others). I'm just guessing on that one. I also guess that Anglo Saxons, fresh from defeat at the Crusades, were willing to give the Lord a more Englishly pleasing name than, Yeshua (I'm using the more modern name and the one recognized worldwide as our Lord's true name in Hebrew), which had (and has) a Middle Eastern sound to it.” -- http://www.wheres-the-church.com/yhoshua.html
In the Septuagint the translators transliterated the Hebrew name Yehoshuah to sound as close to the Hebrew as possible in the Greek and thus we get in the English; Joshua. Now so as not to confuse the Old Testament Joshua with the Messiah or any other Joshua for that matter the translators translated Yehoshuah into Greek. They took the Hebrew Yud and made it a Greek Iota. The Shin became a Sigma and the Vav became an Omicron-Upsilon and it is necessary for a final sigma to be placed at the end of the word to distinguish that the name is masculine. Greek grammar rules require that the Hebrew Ayin, the “ah” sound be dropped and BAMB! Yeshua becomes Jesus in the English.
“Dr. Daniel Botkin pinpoints the interchangeableness of the names Joshua and Jesus noting that Neh. 8:17 has Yeshua (Jesus) for Yehoshua (Joshua). Joshua’s name in Greek is (also) Yeasous and is seen in the Septuagint (Josh. 1:12; 2:11; 3:1; 4:4, etc.) which predates the Messiah’s birth by more than 200 years. Botkin also says that this too is proof that ‘Yesous has no connection to Zeus’ for the Jewish Sages who wrote the Septuagint would have been well aware of the pagan god by that name and wouldn’t have used those Greek letters to form Joshua’s name with it if they thought there was a connection to it or to ‘Hail Zeus!’ as some infer.”-- http://www.seedofabraham.net/jesusyeshua.html
Now, I do not use the name Jesus Christ, I do not like it for what anti-Semites and anti-Nomians have made the name to come to symbolize. I use Messiah’s Hebrew Name, Yeshua Ha Moshiach. But even though this issue of Yeshua to Jesus has caused a lot of confusion in religious circles today I pray that a little knowledge of the languages involved we can see how Yeshua became Jesus.