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What's in a name?

British cat holding a police department banner. Mugshot. Photo of the criminal's arrest. F

in a nation where every name or word in our vocabulary is put under a microscopic lens. In some nations names can be seen as divisive and considered hate filled. People's lives are so fragile and broken that they are triggered by names.

They just need the name of Jesus. In contrast, God is not moved by every negative name that is hurled against him. God’s word is true and trustworthy. God has spoken, his words have been written down accurately, and what God has said will surely come to pass. 

God's name and words will live on in eternity (Matthew 24:35). God designated Jesus to be the Savior of the world, no one else can be his equal. Christians are to be open-minded on many issues, but not on how people are saved from sin.

The name of Jesus is an offense to many who don't know him. But God has highly exalted him. Jesus is the one whom God provided as the way to have an eternal relationship with himself. There is no other name or way!

Names are important to God. How so? Well, God emphasized his importance of names so much that he decided to change some names of his believers. Here's a list of some names that were changed in the Bible.

Your homework assignment is to find the scripture and what their name means before and after the name change. All names come with a definition. The first obvious name you may have already been thinking about.

1) Abram- Abraham
2) Sarai- Sarah
3) Jacob- Israel (Be careful-Smile).
4) Daniel- Belteshazzar
5) Hananiah- Shadrach
6) Mishael- Meshach

7) Azariah- Abed-nego
8) Mattaniah- Zedekiah
9) Hosea- Joshua
10) Joseph- Zaphenath-Paneah
11) Saul- Paul
12) Simon- Cephas- Peter

*Also please name the individual who gave the name change. How many of you know what a surname is? What about the definition of pseudonym? Have these words ever been attributed to you?

Many times before I pray each morning, I recognize the holiness of God and approach him each morning with reference that is do his name. He is deserving of this respect. He is Elohim, he is Yahweh!

Again, my friends, names and their definition play a significant role in how God uses them to apply truth. There are positive names written and there are negative names written. For example, Hannah prayed to God for a son.

The Lord remembered her prayer and gave her a son. She named him Samuel (Shemuel- El). (1 Samuel 1:1-20), Which means "heard of God." A negative name mentioned in the Bible is "Ichabod ("'îy-kâbôd) (1 Samuel 4:21).

That name came from Eli's son Phinehas' wife, who gave her son this name after Eli and Phinehas died in the attack by the Philistines, and the Ark of God had been taken. The name Ichabod means "The glory has departed."

Some people will name children, places, or things after negative, or names associated with evil. There are people who are named "Satan." Does that mean they are evil? Of course not. But the character behind the name matters.

God always looks inward, regardless of appearance or title. Satan’s name (ώâţân), which means adversary, one who withstands, has other names that matches his defeated character. He is called Lucifer, the devil, Beelzebub, among other names.

Satan was once called "The anointed Cherub." But after rebellion against God, his name and titles changed. Again, I want to continue to emphasize that God gave "names" that by which a person, place or thing is marked and known.

[In scripture, these names were generally descriptive of the person, of his position, of some circumstance affecting him or her, so that "The name" often came to stand for the person.]

Today Christians must have discernment to know the difference between knowing Jesus and those who pretend to know Jesus. (Luke 13:24-28; 21:8; Acts 19:13-16). Sadly, those who reject Jesus receive nothing new in the afterlife.

Today my friends, if your life is in God's hand, that he is the author and finisher of your faith, then you can proclaim these pleasant words from your lips each and every day.

🎵 "I have a maker,
He formed my heart,
Before even time began,
My life was in His hands.

He knows my name,
He knows my every thought,
He sees each tear that falls,
And hears me when I call." 🎵

When Almighty God, the beginning and the end, the all-knowing, and everywhere at once God intimately starts a relationship with you, it goes much deeper than just your name. Remember my friends, some people want to know you for their motives against you.

God is speaking these words today to the lonely, the brokenhearted, the misunderstood, the person who blew it, that one sitting behind bars with a number on his shirt. God knows the name of all that hurt.

He has a beautiful life for you, if you will turn your heart over to him. He has these words to say to you; "For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for prosperity and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11 NASB).

This loving God who created the smallest ant, the mammoth grizzly, the Appalachian Mountains through the state I live in, and the Sahara Desert. He invented music, color, rhyme, motion, laughter, surprise, adventure, etc.

Jesus masterminded the intricacies of the human body. He’s the definition of good and holy and absolute truth. He is Genesis, and he is Revelation. He is now, and he is eternal. God is the supreme being and has authority over everything.

There has never existed, nor will there ever be, anyone or anything greater, more powerful, more holy, or more mighty than he is. God is the Father of time, the Father of the universe, and the Father of humanity.

No matter what your name is. No human has eternal life without him, and every human will bow in allegiance to his holy name. He will judge, he will forgive, and he will punish. He is grace, and he is wrath. He is perfect and beyond our finite understanding.

Man cannot escape God’s sight. No rocket or submarine can propel a person beyond or beneath God’s creation. His all-seeing eyes know exactly where each life on the planet lives and breathes. "After all that, do you think he knows your name?"

God is. He is eternal glory and righteousness. His faithfulness will never end. And he is above all. And he did all this for you. Jesus loves you more than your mind can comprehend. Jesus gave up his life for you.

There have been worldly studies that say teachers (educators) whose students with surnames that come later in the alphabet are given lower grades. Because teachers get lazier as they grade things from "A to Z."

🗣📢 Last words: Teachers may see your name in a lackadaisical way, but if you have Jesus as your guide in life, he will never grade you on your name. God grades the heart. (1 Samuel 16:5-13). God is never complacent about you.

God may never give you a new name here on earth, but if surrender your heart to him, not only will you receive eternal life, but you will receive a new name in heaven. (Isaiah 62:2; Revelation 2:17; 3:12; 14:1, 20).

Here are some lifelong wise words to lock in your heart forever;

A) God is in control of my life (Isaiah 41:10; Joshua 1:9).

B) God knows me intimately and loves me completely (Psalm 56:8-11;139:1-6; 1John 3:1; 4:9-12).

C) God has specific work for me to do. He has given me gifts and talents. (Ephesians 2:10; 1 Peter 4:8-10).

D) God desires to move me out of my past and into a greater future (Philippians 3:14-15; Proverbs 24:14).

E) God wants me to keep my eyes fixed on him and his plans (1 Corinthians 9:24-25; Jeremiah 29:11; Colossians 3:2).

No matter what name I may be known by in the world, I want to represent his will. Please attach these living words of your Savior to your heart. Your name will always matter to Jesus (Isaiah 43:1).

If you know someone who struggles with their name and identity, give them the name above all names!

🛐 Here’s a prayer you can pray to receive that new name. "Heavenly Father, thank you for today's message centered around my identity in you. Lord, many times in my life I have struggled with who I am and where I belong in life.

Lord, I'm asking for a transformational change in my life. Help me to stop wondering around aimlessly in my life. I desire to be a citizen of heaven. I choose to commit my heart and life to you today.

Lord make me new with the new name the pastor spoke about. Give me a new name that will glorify your name in my life. Lord, fill me with the Holy Spirit’s changing power.

I pray for miracle changes in my circumstances. My name has meant so much pain and disappointment. I surrender my life and receive your redemptive power today.

I give you all the honor and glory for what you are doing. Thank you for redeeming me, saving me from destruction, and giving me a new spiritual name in your family! To you be all the glory, Amen."

"If you would like to know Jesus as your Savior, please read the drop-down page entitled "How to know Jesus."

📣 Help spread the word by sharing this web site and messages on your platform.

🙏 Please remember to pray for the people in Israel. They are God's people because of his covenant promises to them. (Genesis 12:1-3; Numbers 6:22-27; 24:8-9). ✝️

📲 Prayer Line- Text line- 1-412-616-3572

{Bible Dictionary} 

"The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you."


Pastor Todd Boxley

Worship Center Ministry

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