Bar Mitz-vah is made of two words: “bar” (son) and “mitzvah” (law, commandment). Literally, it means “son of commandment.” “Bar” is mostly an Aramaic word, but it appears once in the Old Testament Hebrew text:
“What, my son? and what, the son of my womb? and what, son of my vows?”
As such, it qualifies as a valid Hebrew word.
Bar Mitz-vah is the religious ceremony of initiation that makes a 13-year-old Jewish boy capable of and accountable to following the commandments in the Torah. After the initiation ceremony, the Jewish boy is regarded as ready and liable to observe religious precepts and is eligible to take part in public worship. Traditionally, the father of the bar mitzvah boy gives thanks to God that he is no longer punished for the child’s sins.
A similar ceremony is also celebrated for girls and is called Bat mitz-vah. Literally, “daughter of commandment.” Girls, however, do not have the same burden of the law as boys do.
“Bar” appears 41 times In the New Testament and always as a part of a name. It was common to name people as son-of-their-father. Similarly, it is the “-son” suffixes in English and European names such as Johnson, Richardson etc.
We see “bar” in many Hebrew names in the New Testament: Simon Bar Jonah, Matthew 16:17; Bar-Aba, which was converted to Barabbas, Matthew 27:16; Bar-Talmai, which was converted to Bartholomew, Mark 3:18; Bar-Shaba, which was also converted to Barabbas, The Acts 1:23; and Bar-Naba (which means a son of a prophet). This name was converted to Barnabas to make it sound Greek. Acts 1:23.