What’s in a Name? {12.30.16}

How did you get your name? Chances are that your parents named you and maybe, like me, you were named after someone or some people in your family. Maybe you were given a name from the Bible. Or, maybe you were named after a great athlete, movie star, or other celebrity. Perhaps you were named after a favorite character in a book or a beloved friend. Some of us were even given a name created by putting a couple of names together or just created to be different or unique. Maybe your name was chosen from a book of hundreds of baby names.names Whatever our given name is, it is part of our identity isn’t it? People associate us with our name. Sometimes that can be bad or good, depending upon how we live our lives. Aside from our given name, we also get other names in our lives, don’t we? Whether it is daughter, son, sister, brother, mom, dad, friend, co-worker or teammate, they all reflect a relationship. Such is the case with two names given to men by God. Those two names are John the Baptist and JESUS. Let’s take a look…

John the Baptist – Luke 1:13 “But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid Zechariah: your prayer has been answered. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John.”

You can read the full details Luke 1:5-25 and 57-80. It’s quite a story – a true story.

JESUS – Luke 1:31 “You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus.”

Let’s look a little further to the “name of JESUS”…jesus-salvation

Luke 1:32-33 “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.”

Did you notice that? “His kingdom will NEVER end.” That is good news for us. It’s in fact, the best of news. Here’s why…

John 20:31 “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”

God is talking about life here on earth but also everlasting life (remember – “his kingdom will never end”) if we believe in Him. But don’t get confused. The devil believes in Him. He knows He exists. It’s not just the knowing and believing He exists. It’s to have faith in Him, belief in Him, trust in Him, obey Him, love Him and follow Him.

Let’s check out how powerful “the name of JESUS” is…

Acts 2:38 “Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

Matthew 1:20-21 “But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.  She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”  

jesus-name-above-all Philippians 2:9-11 “Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,  that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,  and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Colossians 3:17 “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”

1 John 3:23 “And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us.”

1 Corinthians 6:11 “And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

Acts 3:16 “By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.”

jesus-power-in-nameThere is power in the name of Jesus! Even when we are in a situation where we can’t even articulate a prayer, we can call upon His Name. Just say the name of Jesus. There is power in His Name.

Whatever our given name is, let’s make sure to give it a good reputation. Even if we’ve made a “bad name of it” in the past, we can change that. Remember, there is power in the name of Jesus. Call upon Him for help, he can change anything from bad to good if we allow Him to be Lord of our lives. Let’s start off this New Year with Jesus leading the way and us following His lead. For, NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR GOD and there is POWER IN THE NAME OF JESUS. Happy New Year!