Yesterday we looked at the World of the Third Commandment, as found in Exodus 20: 7. Today we’ll look at the World in Front of the Text:
You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.
We learned yesterday that the concept of “name” is more than just what we call God, but it is who He is. I believe that this has a couple of key points of reference for us today. First is reverence. We should show the proper reverence to God by respecting His name. I think this has a definite meaning to how we speak about God and about how we invoke His name. In other words, God’s name should not be used as a curse or even used lightly. Many times we take God too lightly, we don’t take seriously the holiness of God. There is a great quote by Dorthy Sayers :
We have very efficiently pared the claws of the Lion of Judah, certifying Him “meek and mild,” and recommended Him as a fitting household pet for pale curates and pious ladies. To those who knew him, however, he in no way suggested a milk-and-water person; they objected to him as a dangerous firebrand.
God, Jesus, the Spirit, they are certainly not to be trifled with. God is holy and His name it be treated as such. As Christians, we are not to have unwholesome talk come out of our mouth and that points to how we treat the name of God. We should treat that name with deference and respect.
The second thing that we can see within this passage is this – we are to benefit God’s glory, we are not to use God’s glory for our own benefit. We are there for God glory, not God for our glory. So let us be very careful invoking God’s name for our own personal benefit. God’s name and God’s reputation is greater than the way that it benefits me. We are to use His name not for us. We do all things for His glory. Not for ours.
Let us treat God’s name with the respect that He deserves.
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