Friday, July 12, 2013

Power In The Name Of The Lord

In our media today and on our streets most of the time when we hear Jesus or God mentioned it is in the form of a curse. However, there are exceptions.  Whether I watch drag racing on TV or an interview of an athlete in some other sport it is more acceptable and even more common to hear them give praise to God and their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But, from my perspective, these seem to be with rare exception responses to something that has already happened.

But recently I tuned in to watch a portion of Nik Wallenda’s tightrope walk over an expansive abyss of the Grand Canyon, and I was captivated by his conversation with God and how it seemed that his heart was calmed and his focus was kept by speaking the name of Jesus and giving praise to his God. Nik was quoted in an interview, "I find that peaceful and relaxing and He's the only one up there listening to me," Wallenda said. "My life is based on my faith. I guess the biggest role that it plays is that if I do fall and die I know where I'm going." (

Today Sarah writes about whispering the name of Jesus when we are pressed for some reason, so that we might even be calmed by His presence, watch care, and faithfulness. Some might view Christians relying on the name of Jesus as our believing that it is some magic formula or super-calming mantra. But we know it to be much, much more. Throughout the Old Testament we read of people calling on the “name of the Lord,” and the power of His name. Then in the New Testament we see the fulfillment of the promise of our Lord God by Him giving us His Son to become our Savior and Lord, and His name is Jesus.

Matthew 1:20-25 …an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet: BEHOLD, THE VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD AND SHALL BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL,” which translated means, “GOD WITH US.” And Joseph awoke from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took Mary as his wife, but kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a Son; and he called His name Jesus.

As Jesus was meeting with His disciples prior to His arrest, recorded in John 13-17, He repeatedly told them of the power that they would have in asking God for the “whatever’s” and the “anything’s” in His name—the name of Jesus. He spoke of His oneness with the Father and the Holy Spirit who was soon to be given to them.  As Jesus was closing up this time He ended it with prayer, and here is a portion of that prayer:

John 17:6-12 “I have manifested Your name to the men whom You gave Me out of the world; they were Yours and You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word. Now they have come to know that everything You have given Me is from You; for the words which You gave Me I have given to them; and they received them and truly understood that I came forth from You, and they believed that You sent Me. I ask on their behalf; I do not ask on behalf of the world, but of those whom You have given Me; for they are Yours; and all things that are Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine; and I have been glorified in them. I am no longer in the world; and yet they themselves are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We are. While I was with them, I was keeping them in Your name which You have given Me; and I guarded them and not one of them perished but the son of perdition, so that the Scripture would be fulfilled.

There is so much in this prayer, and one of the prominent things is the emphasis of being kept in the name of God. And as we look at the whole of Scripture we can see that “the name of the Lord” is synonymous with our Lord Himself and all that He is. So when we call on the name of Jesus, when we call out His name even quietly we are truly calling upon our God who answers our prayers and meets our needs. He knows our every need, even the ones which we can’t give voice to, when all we can do is voice His name and trust Him to respond.

Psalm 8 O Lord, our Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth, who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens! From the mouth of infants and nursing babes You have established strength because of Your adversaries, to make the enemy and the revengeful cease. When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained; what is man that You take thought of him, and the son of man that You care for him? Yet You have made him a little lower than God, and You crown him with glory and majesty! You make him to rule over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens and the fish of the sea, whatever passes through the paths of the seas. O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth!

Today in “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young (7/12)

Whenever you feel distant from Me, whisper My Name in loving trust. This simple prayer can restore your awareness of My Presence.

My Name is constantly abused in the world, where people use it as a curse word. This verbal assault reaches all the way to heaven; every word is heard and recorded. When you trustingly whisper My Name, My aching ears are soothed. The grating rancor of the world’s blasphemies cannot compete with a trusting child’s utterance: “Jesus.” The power of My Name to bless both you and Me is beyond your understanding.

“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

Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. John 16:24

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