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What's in a Name?

“God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM….This is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation.”  Exodus 3:14-15

Your name. Do you realize how much anguish your parent’s went through in choosing your name? They most likely researched name meanings, had several disagreements with each other in the process, and probably offended someone on either side of the family for the name they finally chose. Maybe you have or will eventually go through that same process with the name you choose for your child.  Names are important. They can play a big part in defining not only our heritage, but who we are, and who we will become.

For the Old Testament Hebrews, God’s name, Yahweh, was the single most important name. It carried such importance that they would not even speak the name. It was a name that signified holiness and demanded their respect and honor. The name of God was serious business, and misusing it was unacceptable.  Not only did it define the Creator God, it defined their generation. Wow, what does that say about our generation with the way we treat God’s name? It is a great chasm that has developed from then to now.

Most likely, you have ventured to the edge of that chasm and stared into its darkness and felt hopeless on your own to ever be able to bridge it. The holiness of God seemed out of reach, and the chasm of sin was too wide to cross. God knew it was impossible as well. But He had a plan from the foundation of the world.  And that plan involved His Son, Jesus. He would be the one to bridge that darkness and make a way for us to experience the holiness of God in our lives.  How would He do that?  It was to be provided through His name.

 “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other Name under heaven
given to men by which we must be saved.”  -Acts 4:12

Names really do carry a lot of meaning. In a name we find our past. In a name we find who we are to be and who we are to become. But in His name we find who He created us to be. And in His name we find hope for the deepest need of our heart and our soul, and that need is salvation. Have you trusted His name for your eternity?

My name is going to pass away one day. What little power it has to shape my character is limited with time. But His name is forever and it is the “Name above every Name.”  I think I’ll let His name shape who I am and who He wants me to be.




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About the Author

Bruce has served in full-time ministry for over 25 years and has served as chaplain at the YMCA at Pabst Farms since August, 2006. Prior to moving to Wisconsin, he served as Associate Pastor of Missions and Evangelism at Alpha Baptist Church in Morristown, Tennessee as well as Minister of Activities and Recreation. .. Read More »

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