Thursday, September 1, 2011

More than Jacob, Ethan, Michael, Abigail, & Noah: Biblical Names

It's funny how some names catch on and some don't. Christianity has been around for a couple millennia (even longer if you count the Israelites of the Old Testament), yet only a few names of the thousands in the Bible maintain popularity. I'm sure that the faith and/or valor of certain figures is what's kept their names popular (I can't explain Jacob or Jonah, however), but for parents seeking a name to honor their faith, there are more than just the usuals!

  • Abidan (AB-id-dan or ah-BYE-dan)--"My father is judge"
  • Abiel (AY-bee-el)--"God is my father"
  • Adlai (AD-lay or AD-lye)--"God is just"
  • Allon (AHL-lon)--"oak tree"
  • Azarel (AZ-ah-rel)--"God has helped"
  • Boaz (BOH-az)--"swiftness, strength"
  • Cephas (SEE-fas)--"rock". Most versions of the Bible translate it into its Greek equivalent--Peter.
  • Eliud (ee-LYE-ud)--"God is grandeur"
  • Eran (eh-RAHN)--"vigilant"
  • Haggai (HAG-gye)--"festive"
  • Ithiel (EE-thee-el)--"God is with me"
  • Jabin (JAY-bin)--"perceptive"
  • Jair (JAYR)--"he shines". Greek form is Jairus.
  • Joram (JOHR-am)--"exalted by God"
  • Omri (OHM-ree)--"my sheaf"
  • Tekoa (tek-OH-ah)--"stockade"
  • Zimri (ZIM-rye)--"my music"
  • Zuriel (ZOOR-ee-el)--"God is my rock"

  • Abiah (ah-BYE-ah)--"My father is God"
  • Adina (ah-DEE-nah)--"slender". A male in the OT, but a female name in modern Hebrew.
  • Atarah (ah-tah-RAH)--"crown"
  • Ephrath (EF-rath)--"fruitful"
  • Iscah (IS-kah)--"anointed". Likely the inspiration for Shakespeare's invented name Jessica.
  • Jael (jah-EL or JAY-el)--"mountain goat"
  • Keturah (ket-OO-rah)--"incense"
  • Keziah (kez-EYE-ah)--"cinnamon tree"
  • Micaiah (my-KAY-ah)--"who is like God". Unisex in the Bible; modern masculine form is Micah.
  • Michal (mee-KAHL)--"brook"
  • Naamah (NAY-ah-mah or nah-ah-MAH)--"pleasant"
  • Talitha (tal-EE-thah)--"little girl"
  • Zibiah (zib-EYE-ah)--"gazelle"
  • Zillah (ZIL-lah)--"shade"

  • Abijah (ah-BYE-jah)--"My father is God"
  • Nogah/Noga (NOH-gah)--"brightness"

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