by Brad Scott
Leah's second son through her maid Zilpah was called Asher (אשר). The meaning of the name of this son is, like all the others, found in the text in which he is first mentioned.
Bere’shiyt (Genesis) 30:13And Leah said, Happy am I, for the daughters will call me blessed: and she called his name Asher.
Asher's name is rooted in the Hebrew word for happiness or blessedness. This word, and its cognates, can be found in many other places in Scripture, some which may delight you. The 119th Psalm, my favorite, contains 176 verses, divided up into 22 sections of 8 verses each. Each section of 8 begins with the letters of the Hebrew alephbet beginning in Mizemor (Psalm) 119:1 and following the order of the alephbet. The first 8 verses of this Psalm all begin with the first letter, aleph (א). The first two verses begin with "Blessed are ... ". The word blessed is not the typical Hebrew word baruk we are accustomed to saying in our blessings. It is asher. Other cognates of this word can be found in the English translation as my goings (Mizemor 40:3), to make rich (Zekareyah (Zechariah) 11:5), and tithes (Bere’shiyt 14:20). It is no coincidence that Ya'aqov's (Jacob) prophecy over Asher is that out of him, his bread shall be rich and he shall produce the King's delight (Bere’shiyt 49:20).
Shalom Alecheim! ◊