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The Lord's Name

10 Commandments  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented
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Intro:

AG: One of the first duties of parents is to name their children.
This can be a difficult task. The parents make lists. They read baby name books and field suggestions from family members. They try various combinations and say them out loud to see how they sound. They consider all the possible nicknames, and then they check to see what the initials spell. Even after all this, they may still end up at the hospital not having reached agreement about what to call the child!
The one thing that is certain in all of this is that the parents will do the naming. Human beings do not name themselves. Our full names are given, not chosen, which shows that naming is an act of authority.
I remember holding my newborn children in my arms, calling them by name, and telling them that I was their daddy. Naming a child is the first way that parents exercise their God-given authority.
By contrast, one of the remarkable things about God is that no one ever named him. Admittedly, from time to time people have come up with various false names for God. But God’s true name is chosen and revealed by God himself.
Revealed to Moses:
The name that God revealed was his personal name Yahweh, sometimes called the tetragrammaton because in Hebrew it consists of four letters: YHWH. Literally God’s name means “I am who I am” or “I will be who I will be.” It speaks of God’s self-existence, self-sufficiency, and supreme sovereignty. As the events of the exodus unfolded, it also testified to his saving power. The Israelites learned from their deliverance that the God who revealed his name to Moses is a God who saves.
TS: The command given here is to not take the Lord’s name in vain. Like many comands it has both a negative side and a positive side. Here the positive is implied.
a. Negative: Don’t dishonour/misuse the name of GOD
b. Positive: Revere and give honor to His name.
RS: We do not tell God who he is; he tells us. God has his own naming rights, and this is a sign of his sovereign authority. God’s name comes before all other names.
Exodus 20:7 NKJV
“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
To give a more literal translation, “You shall not lift up the name of the Lord your God for nothingness.”
This term had a fairly technical meaning. It was used in legal situations to refer to the taking of an oath.
When witnesses needed to confirm their testimony, instead of swearing on a Bible, they lifted a hand and swore by God’s name.
However, the term was also used more broadly for other situations when people took God’s name on their lips. His name was “lifted up” in worship and whenever else people talked about him.
The command doesn’t forbid using His name (as the Jews came to believe)
It does forbid misuse of it.

Don’t Take God’s Name in Vain

To be specific, we are not to use it in a vain or empty way.
The specific misuse that God has in mind is speaking about him carelessly, thoughtlessly, or even flippantly, as if he didn’t matter or really didn’t exist at all.
God’s name has deep spiritual significance. So to treat it like something worthless is profanity in the truest sense of the word: It is to treat something holy and sacred as common and secular.
The reason God will condemn us is because misusing his name is a very great sin.
It is a direct attack on his honor and glory, and anyone who makes such an attack deserves to be condemned. When people break the third or any other commandment, they are guilty before God, and ultimately they will be judged for their sins.
There are many examples in the Bible. Perhaps the most shocking occurs in Leviticus 24.
A dispute broke out between two Israelites, one of whom was part Egyptian. As they fought, the man of mixed descent blurted out a curse against God. T
he Scripture says that he “blasphemed the Name, and cursed” (Leviticus 24:11a). The bystanders were appalled at what the man said; so they seized him and brought him to stand trial before Moses. The Lord did not hold the man guiltless but said,
Leviticus 24:13–16 NKJV
And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Take outside the camp him who has cursed; then let all who heard him lay their hands on his head, and let all the congregation stone him. “Then you shall speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘Whoever curses his God shall bear his sin. And whoever blasphemes the name of the LORD shall surely be put to death. All the congregation shall certainly stone him, the stranger as well as him who is born in the land. When he blasphemes the name of the LORD, he shall be put to death.
How can we be guilty?

God’s name is not a curse word

many people only lift up the name of God as a profanity to pepper their conversation
They get upset, and as their temper rises, their caution decreases
Then they turn the name of God into a curse word

God’s name isn’t to be an excuse

“God led me” isn’t to be used lightly!
Monopoly: It is used a “get out of jail free” card to escape a circumstance
Many say they are passing on a message from God, then proceed to instruct people to break His revealed WORD!
God didn’t say that!
OT standard for prophet was 100% accuracy

God’s name isn’t to make us appear more truthful

James 5:12 NKJV
But above all, my brethren, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath. But let your “Yes” be “Yes,” and your “No,” “No,” lest you fall into judgment.
Pharisees tradition:
levels of truthfulness based on what they were willing to swear upon
Matthew 5:33–37 NKJV
“Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform your oaths to the Lord.’ But I say to you, do not swear at all: neither by heaven, for it is God’s throne; nor by the earth, for it is His footstool; nor by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. Nor shall you swear by your head, because you cannot make one hair white or black. But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.

Show Reverence for God’s Name

Lift His name in Worship!

Psalm 113 NKJV
Praise the LORD! Praise, O servants of the LORD, Praise the name of the LORD! Blessed be the name of the LORD From this time forth and forevermore! From the rising of the sun to its going down The LORD’s name is to be praised. The LORD is high above all nations, His glory above the heavens. Who is like the LORD our God, Who dwells on high, Who humbles Himself to behold The things that are in the heavens and in the earth? He raises the poor out of the dust, And lifts the needy out of the ash heap, That He may seat him with princes— With the princes of His people. He grants the barren woman a home, Like a joyful mother of children. Praise the LORD!
We studied the names of God recently to aid us in doing this
God would heal the waters: they called Him the God who Heals
God would see the circumstance: God Who Sees
etc

Proclaim His name

Acts 4:12 NKJV
Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
What a blessed privilege it is proclaim the name above all names
God chooses to use us to call sinners to repentance
Like the apostle Paul, we should preach Christ and Him crucified
We lift up Jesus so that the world will know of Him

Conclusion:

How do you use the name of GOd?
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