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In Book of Ezra chapter 10 No.3 the Bible uses the Hebrew word אֲדֹנָי to talk about Ezra.

I thought this word was used only when talking about God.

What does this word mean?

  • Welcome to Mi Yodeya Nasser! Thank you for sharing your question. To learn more about the site, consider taking the following two minute tour. – mevaqesh Aug 19 '15 at 18:06
  • "But this word used when talking about the God only" - this isn't true. See, for example, Shmuel I Chapter 25 – Yishai Aug 19 '15 at 18:08
  • Thanks for your answer sir ( by the way i am sorry about my English..it is not god ) – Nasser Aug 19 '15 at 18:22
  • Hi Nasser. In the first you cited, Adonai IS a reference to G-d. Rash"i commentary, for one, confirms this. Where have you seen this translated otherwise for this verse? – DanF Aug 19 '15 at 18:23
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    Somewhat related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/58945. Also, this title can sometimes be used (not as a divine name) to mean something like "sir(s)" (e.g. B'reishis 19:2; see Sh'vu'os 35b). – Fred Aug 19 '15 at 20:35
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In the comments, you cite this link. I believe you were confused due to English not being your first language by this sentence: "used as a proper name of God only." In context, that sentence does not mean that the word אֲדֹנָי can only refer to God. It means that the word אֲדֹנָי refers to God when it is used as a proper name.

Indeed, as Yishai pointed out in the comments, that word certainly can be used to refer to people (although the verse in Ezra that you cited does seem to be using אֲדֹנָי to refer to God, not Ezra as you suggest. Rashi confirms this).

In Genesis 18:3, the word אֲדֹנָי refers (according to at least one position in the Talmud [Shevuot 35b]) to the angels who were approaching Avraham rather than to God.

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