Of course we know of the immense respect that our Jewish forebearers have for the Holy Name of God. I'd say we probably make a bigger deal out of the name we know that God took when he came to redeem us through his death: Jesus.
I am also curious to know why the name "God is the Rock" was omitted in the Vulgate (Deuteronomy 32:4)
Probably the most dependable suggestion is to wait until you get to heaven and ask St. Jerome yourself. :-)
What does the Septuagint say, and are there any variant meanings for the Hebrew words in the Masoretic?
There has been no variation that I can find in the translation of Deuteronomy 32:4 from the Hebrew. The Dead Sea Scroll pre-Masoretic Hebrew version of Deuteronomy 32 from cave 4 is a fragment and does not have that particular line.
Nevertheless, all of the translations over the millennia from the Hebrew are consistent (AFAIK) in interpreting that as a Name of God, i.e. "the Rock". No variation except for the Septuagint and the Vulgate.
The preceding verses announce it as a name.
The Name of God, the Rock, was apparently first lost in the Septuagint Translation. It was translated to "As for God, ".
The Latin Vulgate dropped it altogether.
All of the research so far is captured in the article.
Me too; but I think Campion is right: We'll have to get to heaven and ask St. Jerome himself.
Pope Benedict XVI speaks of "God is the Rock" as follows:
The faith should keep us in a constant attitude of humility before God, indeed of adoration and praise. In fact what we are because we are Chistians, we owe solely to Him and to his grace. Our radical belonging to Christ and the fact that "we exist in Him" should give us an attitude of total confidence and immense joy. Our Christian life therefore stands on the most stable and safe rock imaginable. And from this rock we draw all our strength.