"Jenova's name is a portmanteau of "Jehovah" and "Nova". "Jehovah" is a widely-accepted romanization of the ineffable Hebrew name 'יהוה', one of the many names of the Abrahamic God. "Nova" is from the Latin feminine adjective for "New". Thus, Jenova's name means "New God", a point of symbolic significance, although this connection is not seen in the game.
Additionally, a nova is a cataclysmic nuclear explosion of enormous proportions caused by the accretion of hydrogen onto the surface of a white dwarf star. Given Jenova's association with planetary and universal themes, this may or may not be a coincidence.
The 'jen' segment also hints at 'genetics', an important theme within the game. In this way, the name can be interpreted as 'gene-nova'.
All of these combine to form a name which alludes to planetary catastrophe (Meteor), genetic traits and experiments (Hojo's creations, Aeris's Cetra genes, Jenova's genetic 'children') and the birth of a new god (Sephiroth), making it very appropriate.
Sephiroth being Jenova's "son", as well as the implication throughout Final Fantasy VII that he had become one and the same as her, may refer to the Christian belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, yet also via the blessed trinity one and the same with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit."