Enjoying the Journey
Have you noticed it? I heard it sitting in a restaurant last week. It was muttered by someone who passed me in an airport recently. Yesterday it was spoken across a hotel lobby.
No, they were not speaking to Him or about Him. They were just using His name for their own ends. It is interesting to me that those who speak the name of “Jesus” or “Jesus Christ” so flippantly never say, “Lord Jesus Christ.” You cannot call Him Lord and use His name as your servant. When Jesus is Lord His name is Master.
The third commandment is, “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain” (Ex. 20:7a). Dr. Frank Sells taught us many years ago that we take the name of God in vain anytime His name is on our lips and not in our heart. When we speak His name it should be with reverence, with fear, and with love.
His name is not a swear word! Jesus Christ is the name of the Son of God. It is the name of my Savior. “There is none other name under Heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).
What should we do?
- Guard against using the name of Christ in vain. How easy it is for us to speak of Him with little honor given to His name. The Jewish people would not even speak the name of Jehovah. It was the great “unpronounceable.” The Old Testament scribes would bathe and change writing utensils before writing the name of Jehovah. Yet the Jesus of the New Testament is the Jehovah of the Old Testament! Our world today is far removed from such reverence for the name of Jesus.
- Speak His name with meaning and worship. In speaking to Him and in talking to others the name of Jesus should be used carefully, purposefully, and tenderly. It is the name of authority and access. It is the name by which we pray. It is the greatest name on earth.
- Tell others about the name. Jesus has become “the unknown God” of America. When you hear someone speak His name ask them if they know Him. Tell them that the name they just used is the name of the One who changed your life. Do so kindly and courteously, but do not be ashamed to be identified with His name.
I believe that the increased vain use of His name in media and in daily life is part of a Satanic strategy. You see, the devil hates that name. No one every swears in the name of Buddha. Not once have I heard some frustrated passer by speak the name of Mohammed. It is always the name of Jesus.
The name of Jesus has power. It is the name of truth, the name of salvation, the name of the One we shall all kneel before very soon.
The rest of the third commandment is rarely quoted, “…for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain” (Ex. 20:7b).
Jesus Christ is not a swear word…He is the Lord.