We have been singing a new song recently at our Church called “All to Us” by Chris Tomlin. It is a great worship song that is an anthem, declaring that Jesus is all to us. There is one line in the song that resonated with me because it is a great description of what I really desire to be the heartbeat of our Church. The phrase in the song says, “Let the glory of Your name be the passion of the Church.” I love that line.
Sometimes we can get focused on so many other things and can start promoting people or causes or ideas and visions, when in reality it is the name of Jesus that matters most. It is through His name that people are saved, healed, restored, and given hope! There is power in the name of Jesus!
As I was thinking about the glory of His name today, I read a devotional by my friend, Pastor Jon Courson. Jon shares some interesting insight into why the name of the Lord is so significant that we are commanded to not take His name in vain.
Pastor Jon writes:
“Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” Exodus 20:7
Because virtually everyone would agree that societies and families work best when there is no murder, stealing, or lying, people have an easy time understanding the commandments that prohibit those activities. But in the minds of most people, the third commandment is a different story. After all, they reason, everyone takes the Lord’s name in vain occasionally. God, however, does not agree. And to underscore this, although He prohibited stealing, coveting, killing, lying, and committing adultery with a simple “Thou shalt not,” He amplified the prohibition to take His name in vain as if to say, “This is exceptionally serious.”
I suggest two reasons . . .
First, when the Lord’s name is used in vain, in a manner devoid of meaning, the result is desensitization. This commandment is not about God being offended, but about people being lost, desensitized to the reality of the name that will save them and the reality of where they will spend eternity if they don’t receive Him.
In addition to desensitization, when the Lord’s name is taken in vain, there are real ramifications. The man who accidentally hits his thumb while pounding a nail and says blasphemously, “God damn it,” is actually saying, “God, doom this project I am working on.” And because life and death are indeed in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21), his words, in one way or another, will have a negative impact on the task he is engaged in. Rather dumb!
Mock Buddha and you’ll hear from the ACLU. Make fun of an Indian religion and you’ll be politically incorrect. But use the name of Jesus Christ in any manner whatsoever and no one will even raise an eyebrow. While we may not be able to keep this from happening outside of our homes, we can use it as an opportunity to talk about Jesus to the one who uses His name blasphemously. And in sharing His reality, we can turn the situation around for His glory.
May the glory of His name be the passion of our Church, our lives and our families!