5 Biblical Names We Won’t Be Using For Our Next Child

A few weeks back, I shared that Emily and I are expecting our third child. Last Thursday (November 24), we learned a couple of new details: one, the baby is due March 19th (the day after our oldest’s birthday!) and two, the baby is a boy!

With each of our children to this point, we’ve had an… interesting time trying to agree upon a name. With Abigail, we spent weeks going back and forth before deciding on her name (looking at both name meaning and, if they appear in Scripture, who the biblical example is). With Hannah, we were inspired by John 1:16, “For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.”

But with this one, we’re not really sure what to go with. We’ve started batting around ideas (none of which we’ll be making public until his birth—we’ve got to keep something a surprise, yeah?), but have mostly agreed upon what we don’t like. No nouns, verbs or adjectives; nothing ethnically inappropriate; and nothing that’s guaranteed to get him beaten up daily at school.

One of the places we’ve naturally looked to to find ideas for names is the Bible, something not uncommon for Christian parents. While there are some pretty awesome names within its pages, there are quite a few that are just a terrible idea to ever name your child. Here are the top five that we’ve found so far that we won’t be using for our next child:

1. Mahlon. One of Naomi’s sons (see Ruth 1:2). His name means “Sick”—probably not a good idea to saddle a kid with that one. Speaking of Naomi’s kids…

2. Chilion. Naomi’s other son (Ruth 1:2). His name is equally cheery—it means “wasting away” or, even more simply, “dying.” One thing’s for sure with those names: The therapy bills will be through the roof.

3. Diklah. It may mean “palm grove,” but it sure doesn’t sound like “palm grove.”

4. Phinehas. Aaron’s grandson might have a “mouth of brass,” but phonetically this name sounds a bit too close to having a shiny rear-end.

5. Shearjashub. The symbolic name of Isaiah’s son (cf. Isa. 7:3) means “a remnant shall return.” It also means homeschooling is the only option for this kid.

So those are a few of the names we’ve found that we won’t be naming our next baby. If you’ve got any suggestions on what we might want to consider, let me know!

Posted by Aaron Armstrong

Aaron is the author of several books including the Big Truths Bible Storybook, Epic Devotions, Awaiting a Savior: The Gospel, the New Creation, and the End of Poverty, and Contend: Defending the Faith in a Fallen World. His next book, published by Lexham Press, will release in Spring 2023.

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10 Replies to “5 Biblical Names We Won’t Be Using For Our Next Child”

  1. You don’t want to name your child Sick or Wasting Away??? I don’t understand why not!! 🙂

    Thanks for the post. You could probably find more than five!!

  2. […] 5 Biblical Names We Won’t Be Using For Our Next Child […]

  3. What about Methuselah, for longevity?!

    1. My parents call me Methuselah, but my friends call me Meth…

      Sounds catchy!!

  4. This is hilarious Aaron.  We don’t know if we’re having a boy or a girl, but I’m glad the names we picked out are anything like these.  

  5. I’d salso stay away from anything Hosea named his kids!

    1. I dunno… Jezreel and No Mercy are pretty tempting…

  6. What about Lucifer? It means son of light.

    1. Nice. But, no. 🙂

    2. You could always just shorten to Luci.

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