Thursday, January 11, 2018

His Name

Encouragement for your daily walk with God 

When I was a kid, I heard all kinds of jokes about people with funny names. Names like:

Hedda Haire
Sandy Beech
Art Major
Clay Potts

Maybe you've heard about people whose names fit or don’t fit their occupations. Like the dentist in Dallas named Dr. Toothman, or the Hollywood plastic surgeon named Yul Hurt. 

Names can be strange and silly, but when it comes to the name of God, it’s neither! His name is to be taken with all seriousness. In fact, one of the Ten Laws for mankind is to keep the precious quality of His name: Do not take the Lord’s name in vain [Exodus 20.7]. We’re not talking about cursing here. Rather, it means that we are not to use His name for our vain purposes. 

A name represents a person’s character and reputation. That’s why the author of Proverbs said, “A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches” [22.1]. I particularly like Eugene Peterson’s rendering of this verse, “A sterling reputation is better than striking it rich” [The MESSAGE Paraphrase].

When I say the name of God, I’m thinking about His personality, His reputation, His character. There’s glory and authority in His name. That’s why I ask Christ followers to never speak of God as “the big guy in the sky,” or “the old man upstairs.” The name of God is precious, to be spoken in reverence. 

The Lord’s name is great and mighty. Use it wisely.

You show lovingkindness to thousands, and repay the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them—the Great, the Mighty God, whose name is the LORD of hosts.  Jeremiah 32.18

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