Skip to main content

It’s a Yod -- NOT a Jot and Tittle!

Not only did Yeshua read and speak Hebrew, so did his followers and disciples! Two very well known, but not accurately understood words in the Gospel of Matthew prove it – jot and tittle. For some reason jot and tittle stick in the minds of Christian Bible readers. But when you ask them what jot or tittle mean, you get a lot of conflicting and some really weird answers. Today, you are going to get the facts about what Yeshua originally said and how they ended up in English translations of the Bible as jot and tittle.

Let’s begin by reading Matthew 5:18 from the King James translation:

For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

If you have not read the article “From Yeshua to Jesus” in Yeshua’s Kingdom Handbook please take a moment to read it online by clicking here before you continue. In it you will see how we began with the name “Jesus” and traced it through Latin and Greek back to his real Hebrew name יְהוֹשֻׁעַ (Yeshua).  We will use the same method to trace the words jot” and “tittle” back to the Hebrew words Yeshua spoke as he taught a very important lesson to his disciples.

Our first step is to discover the Greek words the King James translators translated jot and tittle.

● The Greek word translated jot is ἰῶτα (iota).

● The Greek word translated tittle is κεραία (keraia).

The word ἰῶτα (iōta) is the name for the smallest letter of the Greek alphabet.

The Greek word κεραία (keraia) is defined as a horn, anything like a horn, a small dot in writing.

When we trace the Greek words back to Hebrew, we discover ἰῶτα (iōta) is the Greek translation of the Hebrew word יוֹד (yod), the tenth and smallest letter of the Hebrew alphabet.

When we trace the Greek word κεραία (keraia) back to Hebrew we discover that it is the Hebrew word transliterated qotz, which means “thorn.”

At the time of Yeshua there was a popular phrase that is translated “not a yod or a thorn of a yod”. For the Hebrew speaking audience it meant something like this – “not the smallest letter or even the smallest part of the smallest letter.” Yeshua used that idea to make an important point.

Some people had accused him of “destroying” the words of the Hebrew Scriptures. His response was this – I will not destroy one yod or even one qotz of a yod of the Hebrew Scriptures.” Now we know that not only did Yeshua read and speak Hebrew, so did his followers and disciples – otherwise they couldn’t have understand what he taught! We will discuss how Yeshua used these words in their full context to make some very important points in a future study soon.

If you found this interesting and valuable “Like the Real Yeshua Facebook Page” – follow the page too. Also please share this blog with others.

Visit “Yeshua’s Kingdom of Heaven Handbook” page on the BHC website. Print out these studies and create your own personal copy of the Handbook so you can use it to study and share that information with others. It is FREE!

We want to “thank” the “Friends of the Real Yeshua Project” for their generosity in supporting our work. They made it possible for us to do the work required to produce this information, publish it, and make it available for you and anyone else without cost.

Please consider becoming a “Friend of the Real Yeshua Project” too:
Click Here to donate.
Thank you!

Jim Myers


Popular posts from this blog

Do Not Say RAQA! - Yeshua on Anger (Part 2)

In the last blog, we covered the first part of Yeshua’s lesson on Anger -- An Angry Person Should be Tried in Court like a Murderer – keep in mind that “anger” is the focus of Yeshua’s lesson. “Whoever says to a brother, ‘ RAKA ,’ shall be answerable to the Sanhedrin.” [i] Yeshua reveals that the seriousness of the offense has become greater by elevating the crime to the next highest court – the Sanhedrin . It is the highest court in the nation and would be the equivalent of our Supreme Court. What makes this offense more serious than murder, to keep things in the context established by Yeshua? It is because of what the angry person said out of anger – “ RAKA !” RAKA is the English transliteration of the Greek word found in the ancient manuscripts of Matthew. Interestingly, the Greek word is also a transliteration of a Hebrew word into Greek. Keep in mind that when a translator working on a translation of a Greek manuscript transliterates a Greek word, he only finds the

The Prayer Yeshua Prayed Twice Every Day

One of Jesus’s earliest memories was no doubt watching and listening to his family when they gathered to pray the Shema at sunrise before the day’s work began and after the working work day was over at sunset . He also heard and participated in praying the Shema at their synagogue. He was surrounded by neighbors who also prayed the same prayer in their homes every day. The Hebrew word for prayer is tefilah . It is derived from the root Pe-Lamed-Lamed and the word l'hitpalel, meaning “ to judge oneself .” This surprising word origin provides insight into the purpose of Jewish prayer. The most important part of any Jewish prayer, whether it be a prayer of petition, of thanksgiving, of praise of God, or of confession, is the introspection it provides, the moment that we spend looking inside ourselves, seeing our role in the universe and our relationship to God. [1] Most of Jewish prayers are expressed in the first person plural, "us" instead of "me," an