🔼The name Asarel: Summary
- Happy With God
- God Has Bound
- From (1) the verb אשר ('ashar), to be happy, and (2) the word אל ('el), God.
- From (1) the verb אסר ('asar), to bind, and (2) the word אל ('el), God.
🔼The name Asarel in the Bible
🔼Etymology of the name Asarel
The name Asarel consists of two elements, the final one most probably being אל ('el), the prominent Canaanite deity, whose name became applied to the God of Israel, or the common abbreviation of Elohim, the genus God:
In names אל ('el) usually refers to אלהים ('elohim), that is Elohim, or God, also known as אלה ('eloah). In English, the words 'God' and 'god' exclusively refer to the deity but in Hebrew the words אל ('l) and אלה ('lh) are far more common and may express approach and negation, acts of wailing and pointing, and may even mean oak or terebinth.
Where the first part of our name comes from is debated. The Masoretes pointed the letter ש of this name as שׂ, but the word אשׂר does not exist in Hebrew. What does exist is the word אסר ('asar), meaning bond which according to the Masoretes sounded the same as אשׂר:
The verb אסר ('asar) means to bind or tie up. Nouns אסור ('esur), אסר ('issar), מסרת (masoret) and מוסר (moser) all mean bond or band. Noun אסיר ('asir) describes a prisoner (a bound one) and the similar noun אסיר ('assir) refers to a group of prisoners or their joined bond.
Verb מסר (masar) means to bind in the sense of to incriminate or to attach a charge, mission or misdeed to a person. As such it may be used to mean to deliver up or offer.
Some commentators may believe that our name אשראל is really אסראל, but here at Abarim Publications we rather go with the spelling of the original than with the punctuations of the Masoretes. Hence we see a greater likelihood that the first part of our name comes from the verb אשר ('ashar), meaning to go straight or to be happy:
Verb ישר (yashar) means to be straight or level. Adjective ישר (yashar) means right or upright. Nouns ישר (yosher), ישרה (yeshara) and מישר (meshar) mean uprightness or straightness. Noun מישור (mishor) describes a level place or plain.
Verb אשר ('ashar) covers a decisive progression or a setting right, and is often applied to describe happiness and prosperity (right on!). This is not due to a curious coincidence but to the obvious correlation of righteousness and efficiency. Righteousness in the Biblical sense describes a solid grasp of natural law, which leads to high levels of technology, social liquidity and thus peace and prosperity.
Nouns אשר ('esher), אשר ('ashar) and אשר ('osher) mean happiness or blessedness. Nouns אשור (ashur) and אשר (ashur) mean a step, a walk or a going. The noun תאשור (te'ashur) refers to a kind of tree (a happy tree? a progressing tree?).
The relative particle אשר (asher) means who or which, and may or may not be related to the previous (but probably does).
For a meaning of the name Asarel, both NOBSE Study Bible Name List and Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names go with the verb אסר ('asar); NOBSE reads God Has Bound and Jones proposes Bound Of God. As indicated above, here at Abarim Publications we feel that the name Asarel means something like Happy With God. BDB Theological Dictionary does not offer an interpretation of our name.