The Bible is full of names, and many that were once regarded as unusual, Moses, for example, and Delilah are now familiar in classrooms throughout the US. Looking to the good book for inspiration is an excellent choice as the storied names it contains sound classic and are often unique in a contemporary context. Now, we know you’ve heard of Michael and Samuel but have you considered the name Zimri from the Old Testament? Chances are you might not recognize that name and we wanted to find more like it.
We have taken a deep dive into Biblical baby names for boys to discover which names have been historically looked over and deserve more attention. So, if you are an expecting parent looking for holy baby name inspiration that is somewhat off the beaten path today, you have come to the right place. We found some undiscovered baby names from the Bible that new parents should consider as they are beautiful yet not ubiquitous. Let’s dig deep and find inspiring baby names for boys that are rare today but still deserve your consideration! Here are 25 rare Biblical baby names for boys that merit more attention.
It might be hard for you to consider of this name without Captain in front of it, but Ahab is a standalone winner. Ahab, as with most of the names on this list, has Hebrew origins and means “uncle.” In the Bible,
Ahab is the seventh king of Israel and husband of Jezebel.
A masculine name from the Old Testament, but would likely be confused with the name Amy so be ready to defend this one. This appellation deserves it. Ami is another name with Hebrew origins and it means “trustworthy.” What’s not to love?
Anan is a rarely used name that rhymes with its mother language of Akan. In Akan, Anan means “cloud.” In Hebrew, this name is thought to mean “fourth child.” We love this name but fear people will confuse it with “anon” a shortened form of anonymous.
Like Isaiah but looking for a name that’s more individual? Asaiah is a name found several times in the Old Testament. Think of it as a blend of Asa and Josiah and a possible substitute for Isaiah. This Hebrew name means “the Lord hath made.”
Now that such Old Testament patriarchs as Elijah and Moses fill the classroom, Boaz seems downright baby-friendly, having more pizzazz than many of the others, perhaps as a successor to Noah. Boaz has not found favor in the US since the time of the pilgrims! We yearn for this offbeat name to return. Boaz is known as the “
the left pillar in the Temple.” This Hebrew name means “swiftness.”
Buz is a name used in the Old Testament, as well as a variation of Buzz. We love this zippy name even though it has a meaning that might be undesirable for some parents. Buz’s Hebrew origins mean “contempt.” We, however, harbor no disdain for this appellation.
A potential hero name can be found in Crispus as it was borne by Crispus Attucks, an African and Native American man, who was the first colonist to die for independence in the Boston Massacre. This stately name has Latin origins and means “curly-haired.”
In the Bible, Eder is the son of Mushi. The name has Basque origins and an intriguing meaning in “handsome.” This name is pronounced ED-er. Today, you will primarily find this name in Spanish-speaking communities so it could be a great way to honor your heritage.
Elam is the name of no fewer than eight Old Testament figures. The most notable was a grandson of Noah whose followers were dubbed the Elamites. Elam has Hebrew origins and means “distant.” Which makes its meaning appropriate as this name has not been in the US top 1000 since 1898!
A thundering biblical name belonging to a grandson of Adam and Eve, also known as Enosh, Enos could prove a smart choice It hasn’t made as much of a comeback as similar Enoch, unfortunately. Enos is also a book in the Book of Mormon which might appeal to some. Enos has Hebrew origins and it means “mankind.” It was last populs in the US in the 1920s.
Ephron was the Old Testament son of Zohar who sold his field and dwelling to Abraham to use as a family burial ground. Ephron is also a Biblical place-name, a mountain range that formed the northern border of the land of Judah. Ephron has such a beautiful ring to it and means “fawn-like.”
Attractive Gaius, pronounced GUY-us, was in the name of many ancient Romans, including Julius Caesar. Little-used before the year 2000, it now feels like a fresh possibility in the revival of Latin boys’ names like Atticus and Cassius. This gleeful Latin choice means “to rejoice.”
Abraham’s older brother in the Old Testament, Haran enjoyed this elegant name. Haran has Hebrew origins and means “mountain.” This name would be a welcome alternative to Aaron or Ryan.
Jabin is the name of two Old Testament kings that seems as fresh as you can get for modern use, given the popularity of sound-alike Biblical brethren Jadon and Jacob. This joyful name means “perceptive” which could very well be a quality you would want for your son.
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The name of the tenth king of Israel is pronounced Ye-hu but most English-speakers wouldn’t necessarily know that. He seized power violently and reigned from about 841 to 814 BCE. Despite that unsavory connection, we think the name Jehu would be an amazing option. This Hebrew name means “God is He.”
Joses is the Greek form of Joseph that we are most found of. The name is used in the New Testament and like Joseph, this appellation means “Jehovah increases.” If you are looking for an alternative to Joseph or even Moses, this could be the perfect pick.
An Old Testament name used by the Puritans, Laban is scarcely heard today. This amazing Hebrew name means “white.” Laban is the Biblical father of Rebecca, Rachel, and Leah and the father-in-law of Jacob. Rebecca, Rachel, and Leah are massively popular so it’s wild that Laban has never caught on.
Nebo is considered ancestor of some who returned to Judah with Zerubbabel. Nebo belongs to a Babylonian mythological figure who was the god of letters and invented writing. This name also belongs to a couple of Biblical places. Nebo has Babylonian origins that mean “to announce” or “prophetic.”
Old Testament name of a king of Israel, related to the harvest. Thus, this name means “my sheaf.” Omri is a very handsome name that is currently popular in Israel and we wish it would catch on in the US. It’s the perfect alternative to Emery.
Rosh is not Ross, not Rush, but an improvement on both of those more familiar names. The Biblical Rosh was a son of Benjamin, so you might consider it to honor a father or otherwise ancestral Benjamin. Rosh is associated with the Jewish New Year holiday, Rosh Hashanah. This gorgeous Hebrew name means “chief.”
The name Shem is a boy’s name of Hebrew, Yiddish origin meaning “name.” Shem is the name of one of Noah’s sons, his eldest. This rather blunt name could be perfect for the right parents looking for a casual-sounding moniker.
Talmai is the name of several minor actors in the Old Testament, including the father of Maacah, the wife of King David, and one of Anak’s three giant sons. Talmai has Hebrew origins and means “furrowed.” The name Bartholomew can be interpreted as meaning “son of Talmai.”
Tammuz is the Semitic variation of Dumuzid, a name from Sumerian mythology. Tammuz is the name of fourth month on the Hebrew calendar, corresponding with June and July on the Gregorian calendar. This gorgeous Sumerian name means “loyal child.”
The Biblical Zerah is related to such names as Zora, which also means “dawn.” While the vowel sound at the end of the name does not sound as feminine to our modern ear as it once did, thanks to such popular choices as Noah and Joshua. Zerah has the attractive Z-sound that many parents are after today. This name appears dozens of times in the Bible.
This unusual and energetic Biblical name was one of the Kings of Israel as well as one of Judah’s grandsons and has a wonderful meaning. Pronounced ZIM-ree, this Hebrew name means “my music, my praise.” We really do love this one and hope new parents pick it up!
There you go! Did you enjoy these unusual Biblical baby names? Many of us do not come across rare Biblical baby names so we hope these jostled your memory about a certain passage and that they appeal to you as possibilities for your son. We hope you feel inspired by these, mostly, Hebrew baby names that all appear in the Bible.
Andrew is a Chicago-based writer who enjoys finding the best of the internet, obsessively making lists, and cooking for friends. After studying Film and Art History, he developed a deep love for both topics. Celebrity news, pop culture, and stories that bring people together are his passions.
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Baby Name Generator
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