Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Ready For A Name Change?

It has long been a custom of Eastern people to change their names on the occurrence of some great event in life. And the Bible is full of name changes in the past.

Abram was changed to Abraham (Gen 17:5, Neh 9:7)

• Sarai was changed to Sarah (Gen 17:15)

• Jacob was changed to Israel in commemorating of his prevailing prayer (Gen 32:28, 35:10)

• The King of Egypt changed the name of Joseph to Zaphnath-paaneah because of his ability to reveal secrets. (Gen 41:45)

• Another King of Egypt changed the name of Eliakim the son of Josiah to Jehoiakim when he made him King of Judah. (2 Kings 23:34)

• The name of a great lady Hadassah was changed to the one we know as Esther (Esther 2:7)

• When King Nebuchadnezzar became fond of some of the strong Jewish prisoners, he changed their names from Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah to Belteshazzar, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego. (Dan 1:6-7)

And of course you should be familiar with the name changes in the New Testament. When their ministries began Saul was given the name………….And Simon was given the name……………. (You better get those two right. They both authored New Testament books)

Did you know that even Jesus was “given” his name?

“Eight days later, when the baby was circumcised, he was named Jesus, the name given him by the angel even before he was conceived.” Luke 2:21 (New Living Translation)

“that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,” Philippians 2:10 (New International Version)

There is a lot to the meaning of a name. My birth name is Steven which means “crowned one”. I hope that I can live up to that name. My son is named Nathaniel which means “gift from God”. He definitely lives up to his name. He is my pride and joy.


The Bible says that in the future we will be given a new name from God himself.

“I'll give the sacred manna to every conqueror; I'll also give a clear, smooth stone inscribed with your new name, your secret new name." Revelation 2:17 (The Message)

What will your new name mean? Will it mean “one who accomplished much”, or will it mean “had great potential”? Will it be the name of a disciplined champion for Jesus, or a reference to laziness? Will it be the name of someone who holds the position of king, priest, or favored son and daughter? Or will it be like the name Ichabod: the glory has departed?

Since we are judged based on the works done in the body during our brief stay here, it behooves us to build for ourselves a good name. And you know what Solomon said:

“A GOOD name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.” Proverbs 22:1 (King James Version)
What's in a name? More than most people can ever imagine.

Here is a beautiful song called "Whisper My Name". Remember what Jesus did for us.

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