The REAL (Biblical) Meaning of Jennifer? - Origin, History & Stories
Jennifer is a feminine name with Cornish, French, and Welsh origin.
It is the Cornish form of Guinevere which is the French form of the Welsh Gwenhwyfar.
Simply put Jennifer is the Cornish form of the Welsh name Gwenhwyfar.
Gwenhwyfar stems from the old Celtic word which means blessed or fair. Fair one, blessed one, and blessed spirit are some meanings of the name Jennifer.
It is a popular variant of Guinevere in the English-speaking world and has enjoyed being one of the most popular names for girls in the United States in recent years.
Between 1966 to 1991 it was a consistently common girl's name and it ranked in the top spot from 1970 to 1984.
If you need a unique name for your little girl or another family member then you are in the right place.
Today we'll explore the real biblical meaning of the name Jennifer by doing a deep dive into the Hebrew, biblical, and spiritual meanings and also look at the origin of the name in the Bible along with Bible stories and verses for this beautiful name.
What does Jennifer mean in Hebrew?
Though it is not a name of Hebrew origin there are ten Hebrew name variations of the English name Jennifer.
Achishalom, Menucha, Shalviya, Shlomit, and Shulamit are baby girl names. Avshalom, Meshulam, Shalom, Shlomi, and Shlomo are masculine Hebrew names for Jennifer.
Achishalom means my brother will bring peace or my brother is peace and is a combination of achi and shalom.
Menucha and Shlomit stand for peaceful or rest, the definition of Shalviya is the peace of God, and Shulamit means peace or tranquil.
Peace, harmony, wholeness, completeness, prosperity, welfare, and tranquility are common meanings of Shalom.
Avshalom is a variant of Absalom and means father is peace.
Meshulam stands for friend or ally, Shlomi stands for my shalom which means my peace, and Shlomo is defined as his peace or peaceable and is a variant of Solomon.
The origins of Jennifer in the Bible
Though the name Jennifer is not found in the Bible, Hebrew variants of the name are found in scripture.
Shalom, Meshulam, and Avshalom (Absalom) may be used to trace the biblical origin of the name Jennifer.
The name Shalom means peace and peace can be traced to the beginning of time.
In Isaiah, Jesus was described as the prince of peace.
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6 NIV)
The prince of peace existed long before he came to earth as a baby born in a manger. He was with God in the beginning.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. ¹⁴ The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:1-2, 14 NIV)
The first mention of the name Meshalum was in the second book of Kings.
This biblical name was in reference to the father of Azaliah and grandfather of the then secretary Shaphan during the reign of King Josiah.
“In the eighteenth year of his reign, King Josiah sent the secretary, Shaphan son of Azaliah, the son of Meshullam, to the temple of the Lord. He said:” (2 Kings 22:3 NIV)
Descendant of David
Avshalom (Absalom) and Shlomo (Solomon) are names that point to children of King David.
Absalom was David's third son and Solomon was born after he left Hebron (2 Samuel 5:14).
“his second, Kileab the son of Abigail the widow of Nabal of Carmel; the third, Absalom the son of Maakah daughter of Talmai king of Geshur;” (2 Samuel 3:3 NIV)
The biblical meaning of Jennifer
From a biblical perspective the name Jannifer has many different meanings.
The meaning of this name may include the peace of God, leader, and restoration.
The peace of God
The name definition of Shalviya, one of the Hebrew variants of the English name Jennifer is, the peace of God.
As a parent, His peace can guard you as you overcome anxiety, face obstacles, and tend to the upbringing of baby Jennifer.
“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7 NIV)
If you need a powerful Christian name that will speak peace into your family relationships and the life of your child then Jennifer is an excellent choice.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13 NIV)
Leader is a Jennifer name meaning that is evident from the roles of Shlomit (1 Chronicles 26:26) and Meshulam.
“So I summoned Eliezer, Ariel, Shemaiah, Elnathan, Jarib, Elnathan, Nathan, Zechariah and Meshullam, who were leaders, and Joiarib and Elnathan, who were men of learning,” (Ezra 8:16 NIV)
If you want your daughter to have personality traits such as leadership then Jennifer is a great first or middle name to affirm such qualities.
Similar to the Welsh form Gwenhwyfar which means fair, the biblical meaning of Jennifer points to fairness, making things right, and restoration.
In Nehemiah 3:4, Meshullam was one of the individuals who helped with restoration.
"…Next to him Meshullam son of Berekiah, the son of Meshezabel, made repairs"
You may name your child Jennifer if you want her to be the kind of person who values fairness and will work to restore relationships as well as tangible things.
“Those from among you Shall build the old waste places; You shall raise up the foundations of many generations; And you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, The Restorer of Streets to Dwell In.” (Isaiah 58:12 NKJV)
If your pregnancy has caused you and your spouse and other family members to become closer, then Jennifer is one of those girls' names that will be a lasting testimony to restored relationships.
The spiritual meaning of Jennifer
Friend, supportive, and peaceful are some of the spiritual meanings of the popular girl name Jennifer.
Meshulam the Hebrew name which stands for friend or ally speaks directly to the spiritual meaning of the name Jennifer.
If you want your child to be a genuine and reliable friend to others Jennifer will suit her well.
“One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18:24 NIV)
Meshullam was one of the individuals who stood by Ezra and supported him as he read from the book of the law.
“Ezra the teacher of the Law stood on a high wooden platform built for the occasion. Beside him on his right stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah and Maaseiah; and on his left were Pedaiah, Mishael, Malkijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah and Meshullam.” (Nehemiah 8:4 NIV)
Jennifer is one of those meaningful names with strong spiritual significance.
She will stand by others as she lends her support and she will work towards solidarity when it comes to spiritual and religious matters.
Peaceful is the definition for Menucha and Shlomit, which are two Hebrew variants of Jennifer.
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matthew 5:9 NIV)
The Christian girl name Jennifer highlights the spiritual significance of what Matthew 5:9 means.
Her efforts in being peaceful in mutual relations will bring blessings in her life.
“Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.” (Romans 14:19 NIV)
What Bible verses contain Jennifer?
Both the New and Old Testament have verses that contain blessed, peace, Meshulam, Shlomit and other similar names and words related to the name Jennifer.
“The sons of Pedaiah: Zerubbabel and Shimei. The sons of Zerubbabel: Meshullam and Hananiah. Shelomith was their sister” (1 Chronicles 3:19 NIV)
“The workers labored faithfully. Over them to direct them were Jahath and Obadiah, Levites descended from Merari, and Zechariah and Meshullam, descended from Kohath. The Levites—all who were skilled in playing musical instruments” (2 Chronicles 34:12 NIV)
“I am a friend to all who fear you, to all who follow your precepts.” (Psalm 119:63 NIV)
“He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” (Mark 5:34 NIV)
“Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” (2 Corinthians 1:2 NIV)
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,” (Galatians 5:22 NIV)
“If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you” (1 Peter 4:14 NIV)
“This Shlomit and his kinsmen were in charge of all the stores of the dedicated things that David the king, the clan heads, the captains over thousands and hundreds and the commanders of the army had dedicated. 27 From the spoil won in wars they had dedicated these things to repair the house of Adonai. 28 Also included was all that Sh’mu’el the seer, Sha’ul the son of Kish, Avner the son of Ner and Yo’av the son of Tz’ruyah had dedicated. In short, if anyone had dedicated anything, Shlomit and his brothers were in charge of it.” (1 Chronicles 26:26-28 CJB)
Stories about Jennifer in the Bible
There are a number of Bible stories that give an account of characters such as Solomon, Shlomit, and other variants of the name Jennifer as well as those that mention peace, the dominant Hebrew meaning of the name.
Story of Jesus offering peace
When Jesus appeared to His disciples after His resurrection, he greeted them with peace.
Before His ascension, He offered all his followers peace and noted that the peace that He offers is unique and powerful.
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27 NIV)
Story of Solomon
Solomon was a wise king who settled many disputes during his reign.
His gift of discernment was evident in how he judged the matter between the two women who had a conflict about a dead baby.
“Then the king gave his ruling: “Give the living baby to the first woman. Do not kill him; she is his mother.” 28 When all Israel heard the verdict the king had given, they held the king in awe, because they saw that he had wisdom from God to administer justice.” (1 Kings 3:27-28 NIV)
Story of Shlomit
Shlomit was a leader during the reign of King David. Along with his brothers, he was in charge of the things that were dedicated to rebuild the house of God.
“Also included was all that Sh’mu’el the seer, Sha’ul the son of Kish, Avner the son of Ner and Yo’av the son of Tz’ruyah had dedicated. In short, if anyone had dedicated anything, Shlomit and his brothers were in charge of it.” (1 Chronicles 26:28 CJB)
Jennifer is among the most common names for girls used in English-speaking countries. It has a number of Hebrew variations that have biblical origins.
The peace of God, leader, and restoration are some meanings of Jennifer according to the Bible.
The spiritual meanings of this name include peaceful, supportive, and being a good friend.