Onomastics or onomatology is the study of the significance, usage, and etymology of names. Questions about names of God should additionally be thus tagged.

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Jacob's name is Israel. So why is he still called Jacob?

When born, Jacob is given the name "Jacob" meaning, "trickster, supplanter, heel grabber." After he wrestles at Jabbok, he is renamed "Israel" meaning "strives with God." However, after this ...
10
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2answers
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What is the significance of Methuselah's name?

I've heard that Methuselah's name was given to him by Enoch in response to a prophecy concerning the flood. Since he seems to have died in the year of the flood (according to the Masoretic and ...
9
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2answers
584 views

The significance of the designations of families who will mourn in Zechariah 12

As the prophet Zechariah proclaims the greatness of Jerusalem's mourning, he says: 12“All Israel will mourn, each clan by itself, and with the husbands separate from their wives. The clan of David ...
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5answers
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What is the significance of the names of the pillars in Solomon's temple?

The Bible doesn't include extraneous, meaningless information, and names have great significance in the Old Testament. 2 Chronicles 3:17 records, [Solomon] set up the two pillars at the entrance ...
7
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2answers
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Signficance of name change from Saul to Paul

Acts 13:9 appears to record the moment Saul's name changes to Paul: Then Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked straight at Elymas and said... (Prior to this time, ...
7
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2answers
332 views

What do the names Oholah and Oholibah mean in Ezekiel 23?

Ezekiel 23:4 introduces the sisters who “play the whore” in an allegory narrated by the LORD: ...וּשְׁמוֹתָ֗ן אָהֳלָ֤ה הַגְּדוֹלָה֙ וְאָהֳלִיבָ֣ה אֲחוֹתָ֔הּ (BHS) : וּשְׁמוֹתָ֕ן שֹׁמְר֣וֹן ...
6
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1answer
643 views

Did someone really name their son Fool?

In 1st Samuel 25, we read about Abigail's first husband, who is named Nabal. Near the end of the story, she pleads with David to save his life: My lord should not pay attention to this wicked man ...
6
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1answer
238 views

Matthew vs Levi in the Gospel according to Matthew

Referring to: Matthew 9:9 - "a man called Matthew" Mark 2:14 - "Levi the son of Alphaeus" Luke 5:27 - "a tax collector named Levi" Is it widely regarded that Levi and Matthew are the same person ...
5
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4answers
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Why does Moses change Hosea's name to Joshua?

Name changes throughout the Bible are pretty significant. Numbers 13:16 says that "Moses changed the name of Hosea son of Nun to Joshua." What is the significance of this name change? What are ...
5
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2answers
114 views

What is the meaning of Abraham's name?

Genesis 17:5 (NIV) states: No longer will you be called Abram; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations. The edition of the Bible that I'm reading has a footnote ...
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3answers
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Who is Iscah in Genesis?

Gen. 11:29 states: And Abram and Nahor took themselves wives; the name of Abram's was Sarai, and the name of Nahor's wife was Milcah, the daughter of Haran, the father of Milcah and the father of ...
5
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3answers
130 views

What is the Hebrew name of the prophet Jeremiah—Yirmeyah or Yirmeyahu?

When the question was asked on Christian hermeneutics the response was both: Please read what I wrote. Jer. 28:5 has יִרְמְיָה (Yirmeyah) and Jer. 7:1 has יִרְמְיָהוּ (Yirmeyahu). As for your ...
5
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1answer
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Are “Uzziah” and “Azariah” the name of the same king?

This is with reference to the two passages 2 Chronicles 26: Then all the people of Judah took Uzziah, who was sixteen years old, and made him king in the room of his father Amaziah. 2 He ...
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3answers
1k views

Significance of the “Son of Man” appellation in Ezekiel

Ezekiel is the only prophet regularly referred to by God as "son of man" (ben adam). This is particularly interested to Christians since Jesus took the title "Son of Man" upon himself (ὁ υἱός τοῦ ...
3
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2answers
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Noah's father Lamech and the Lord's curse

In Genesis 5:28-29 we read about Lamech naming his son Noah, but what he says as he does so has me wondering. With Gen 5:29 it seems Lamech almost knew something in advance. Genesis 5:29 And he ...
3
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2answers
104 views

What is the meaning of Zoar (Genesis 19:22)?

In Genesis 19:22 Lot decides to go to a little village after leaving Sodoma. The text of the NIV version is: But flee there quickly, because I cannot do anything until you reach it." (That is why ...
3
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1answer
120 views

What is the significance of the insertion of the 5th letter of the Hebrew alphabet into the names of Abraham and Sarah?

In Genesis 17 (verses 5 and 15) God gives Abram and Sarai new names. v. 5: No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude ...
2
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1answer
105 views

Do the meanings of Cain and Abel's names tell us anything about how Cain killed Abel?

There's often speculation on how Cain killed Abel in Genesis 4. I've also been told that Cain's name means "spear" and Abel's name means "vapor" or "breath". Do the meanings of Abel and Cain's ...
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2answers
298 views

Three Valleys in Joel 3

Three valleys are mentioned in Joel 3: The Valley of Jehoshaphat (2, 12) The Valley of Decision (twice in 14) The Valley of Shittim (18) I'm wondering: Are any of these known, historical places? ...
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Why is Beer-Sheva' called Beer-Sheva'?

There is a place in Israel called Be-er-Sheva', which is given two different stories to justify the name. The word Be-er means well, as in a well of water, and the word Sheva means "seven" or more ...