Treasure God’s Name, Part Two

white flower“I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.” Psalm 9:2

“Oh Lord, our Lord, how excellent is your name in all the earth, who have set your glory above the heavens!” Psalm 8:1

“Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and forevermore! From the rising of the sun to its going down the Lord’s name is to be praised. The Lord is high above all nations, His glory above the heavens.” Psalm 113:2-4

So, last week in Treasure God’s Name, Part One, I wrote about being wary of misusing God’s name. In contrast, His name must be viewed with reverence and awe.

A name is a reflection of a person’s character. God gave Himself the name ‘I AM’. This indicates His eternal being, He who was and is and will be, forever. God’s name is clearly to be regarded as precious. It is strong, sparkling, a precious stone. It is a privilege to use it. A privilege which must not be abused.

Use God’s name to worship Him. Read one of the many Psalms which extol the glories of the Lord.

Use God’s name with awe at His Majesty, and His creation.

Use God’s name with thankfulness that He has allowed us to speak to Him through His Spirit!

Finally, use it with joy. Because you are His child, you know Him, and He has forgiven you your sins!

Advertisements

Treasure God’s Name, Part One

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.” Deuteronomy 5:11

“And whoever blasphemes the name of the Lord shall surely be put to death.” Leviticus 24:16

“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe.” Proverbs 18:10

I would like to encourage each of you to watch yourselves carefully, as to
how you think of His name,
how you represent it,
and how you respond when others abuse it.

Being constantly in prayer can be dangerous if we forget who it is we are praying to. If you are always thinking “God, please may this matter go well for me,” and not remembering exactly who you are talking to, that could be blasphemy. It may be effectually praying to yourself, if you are only thinking of yourself.

As children of God, whose citizenship is in heaven, we are ambassadors of Christ. Anything that we do as Christians can be seen by others as representing God and His church in general. Our actions will be a good witness for Christ. Or, they can send the message that being a Christian is nothing special, that God doesn’t care what we do. We must be a good and faithful reflection of God.

What should we do when someone misuses God’s name? Well, we are not to be silent bystanders, for then it would be as if we were joining in the crime. Instead, we should speak up! Say, ” Excuse me, but do you realize what you’ve just said?” “I can’t allow the blaspheming of God’s name to go past me without saying something.” The dishonouring God’s name is not something to be overlooked.

Coming soon: Treasure God’s Name, Part Two!

God’s Commands and Our Promises

handshakeWe all make promises. We say we’ll bring something to the next meeting, or pray for a specific need, or drop by on Thursday, or put away our clean washing. We try to keep our promises, and we feel guilty when we don’t. Once we have made a promise, we’ve committed ourselves to do something.
Now, read Exodus 20: 1-17 and Matthew 22:37-40.
These verses contain the commands of God. We are to love God with our whole being, and love our neighbours as we love ourselves. Everything we do should be for the glory of God, and also to promote other people above ourselves.
Our salvation no longer depends on whether or not we live by these laws. Jesus has kept them for us! Instead, we obey them out of our joyful thankfulness for His grace.
Our salvation has never depended on honouring our promises to people on earth. We keep them perhaps to appear righteous, stay in favour with someone, or because we love that person. If we don’t keep them, we try to make it right.

We attempt to live up to God’s requirements because we love Him. We try to keep them out of thankfulness and a desire to glorify Him. But,

How hard do you try to obey God’s commandments?

And when you don’t, what do you do about it? Which do you value more, the commands of God, or your promises to men?

Words on the Temple Walls

ivy.wallI had an uncomfortable thought a while ago which really challenged me, and I would like to share it with you.

1 Corinthians 3:16 says “Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” So, for the purpose of this post, please imagine for a short while, in your head, a temple or building, and that that building is yourself.
My thought was this: What if every word you ever spoke was written on those walls for all the world to see? Your carefully cultivated image stands no longer.
Know this: God has heard all those words. Even those you think are okay, He sees as stinking rubbish, because of your sinful nature which pollutes them.
BUT – and this is the most important ‘BUT’ for all of us – if you believe, trust, and know that Jesus Christ died for your sins, God doesn’t see them! All your sinful words are covered over by Jesus’ death and resurrection. Instead of a pile of rubbish, God sees Jesus’ righteousness, given to you as a free gift!
Now, some may think that the world sees doesn’t matter . . . actually, it does! And it is not because you need to maintain your image of being a perfect girl who “has it all together.”
No, the image we need to maintain is that of one who was dead in her sins, and has been chosen, by God, to be His Daughter, and is so full of joy that she just loves to serve God and man with all her heart and speech!
And we must maintain it because it is true, not just as an image. We must be that girl!