Awesome But Underused Boys Names From the New Testament


Hello readers!
Today we're talking about boys names from the New Testament that aren't on the SSA's top 1000 list. Our horizons have broadened as far as names go and these days more and more people are looking for less common names. If that's you (or even if you're just curious), this post should be right up your alley!





Awesome But Underused Boys Names From the New Testament

  • Theophilus
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "loved by God" or "one who loves God"
    • Bible reference: Luke 1:3, Acts 1:1
Theophilus is a long and somewhat clunky name but the meaning is superb. It doesn't get much better than "loved by God". Luke addressed the books of Acts and Luke to Theophilus. While Theophilus in it's entirity is a mouthful, it comes with an excellent potential nickname: Theo. If that's not your style, there's also Phil.

  • Lazarus
    • Language: Greek variation of Hebrew Eleazar
    • Meaning: "God is my helper"
    • Bible reference: John 11:5 and others
Lazarus is the name of one of Jesus's close friends whom he raised from the dead. Also, the only time Jesus gave a name to one of the people in his parables, it was Lazarus. "God is my helper" is a wonderful meaning. Rus could be a nickname for Lazarus. The Spanish version Lazaro is also super cool.

  • Bartholomew
    • Language: Aramaic
    • Meaning: "son of the furrow"
    • Bible reference: Matthew 10:3 and others
  • Bartholomew has fallen out of favor but it's still a great option. Bartholomew was an apostle of Jesus whose other name is Nathanael. Bart feels like a dated (and maybe a little tainted) nickname but there's also Barry, Tolly, and maybe even Mew.
  • Clement
    • Language: Latin
    • Meaning: "merciful"
    • Bible reference: Philippians 4:3
Clement is a great choice for a modern boy! Clement was only mentioned briefly but he was someone who had worked alongside Paul. The meaning "merciful" is truly powerful and the nickname Clem is ready for a comeback.  
  • Barnabas
    • Language: Aramaic
    • Meaning: "son of encouragement"
    • Bible reference: Acts 11:22-24 and others
Barnabas was actually a nickname of sorts that was given to a generous and faithful man named Joseph. The meaning "son of encouragement" is wonderful and the passage in Acts is something for any Christian to aspire to. Some might think it might be time to dust off the nickname Barney. Personally, I think not. Barry is a much better option.

  • Apollos
    • Language: Greek 
    • Meaning: unknown, possibly "strength"
    • Bible reference: Acts 18:24 and others
Apollos was an intelligent follower of Christ and many great things were recorded about him in scripture. Apollo (without the s) was a Greek god but I think the positive example of Apollos can overcome that.


  • Aquila
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "eagle"
    • Bible reference: Romans 16:3 and others
Aquila was a faithful Christian man who accompanied Paul for part of his missionary journeys, along with his wife Priscilla. I think they were a biblical power couple. The strong meaning of "eagle" paired with the on trend nickname Quil/Quill, make Aquila an intriguing choice.
  • Cornelius
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "horn"
    • Bible reference: Acts 10
Cornelius was an upright gentile man whom God sent Peter to share the gospel. Horns were a symbol of strength in the Bible. Of course, Corny is not a great nickname option but Cory and Neil are.
  • Jairus
    • Language: Hebrew
    • Meaning: "God enlightens"
    • Bible reference: Mark 5:22 and others
Jairus was a synagogue leader who put his faith in Jesus to heal his daughter and Jesus even raised her from the dead. The meaning "God enlightens" is very comforting.
  • Nicodemus
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "victorious people"
    • Bible reference: John 19:39
Nicodemus was a Pharisee who came to Jesus with honest questions and eventually helped to bury him. "Victorious people" is a meaning that packs a punch. Nico is a fashionable nickname and Cody would work too.
  • Rufus
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "red"
    • Bible reference: Mark 15:21, Romans 16:13
Rufus was the son of the man who carried the cross for Jesus. Paul also called a man named Rufus "chosen of the Lord" in Romans (possibly the same man).
  • Zacchaeus
    • Language: Greek variation on Hebrew Zechariah
    • Meaning: "The Lord remembers"
    • Bible reference: Luke 19:8 and others
Zacchaeus started out as a selfish tax collector but after an encounter with Jesus, he turned his life around. "The Lord remembers" is a comforting meaning and Zac/Zach/Zack is a familiar nickname.

  • Demetrius 
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "follower of the earth mother"
    • Bible reference: 3 John 1:12
There were two men named Demetrius in the Bible: one was a troublemaker but one was a dedicated missionary. Demeter was a Greek earth goddess but I think that Demetrius's example as a missionary might be enough to overcome that. It might sound too cutesy to some but Demi could be a nickname for Demetrius.

  • Philemon
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "affectionate"
    • Bible reference: book of Philemon
Philemon was a Christian man that Paul spoke fondly to in the New Testament letter addressed to him.

  • Linus
    • Language: Greek
    • Meaning: "flax"
    • Bible reference: 2 Timothy 4:21 
It might seem odd that I would suggest Linus but many Greek names are coming back into fashion. The biblical Linus is only mentioned once but he was a Christian man who sent greetings to Timothy. This name would be especially appropriate for a little golden-haired boy.


There are fewer names in the New Testament than in the old but many still make great choices! Be looking forward to my upcoming article about underused girls names!

 Which New Testament names do you like? Any you don't care for? Did you use a New Testament name? Any outside the top 1000? Let me know in the comments!

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