January 5, 2005
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.
There are tons of books that only contain names in them—baby names, meanings of names, translations in other languages of names, and so on. But I found a book containing some of the silliest…and they sort of remind me of some of the names of people I have known. For example, there was a dentist in West Palm Beach, Florida, whose name was Dr. Toothman.
It seems that some people’s names are prophetic of their future. For example, in 1941 two men died in the electric chair in Florida. Their last names? Burn and Fizzle. There’s also a Montreal window washer who tragically fell off a window and died, but interestingly enough, his name was Will Drop. Guess who Joe Bunt was? Right…he was a baseball coach. And what do you suppose Dan Druff did? Exactly…he was a barber.
These are certainly strange and silly, but when it comes to the name of God, it’s neither. We are to take His name with all seriousness. He gave, of the top ten laws for mankind, one concerning the sanctity and precious quality of His name.
Why does God consider His name so important and precious—so valuable that He even says, “Don’t even speak My name unless you mean it”? To take the name of God in vanity means to use or say it without meaning or purpose.
A name stands for a person’s character and reputation. That’s why the Bible says, “A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches” (Proverbs 22:1). When someone says your name, others think of your personality, reputation, and character. The same is true with God. God’s glory is in His name, and it identifies His attributes, characteristics, and authority.
The name of God is very precious. When going before the Lord, use it in reverence. And in your everyday life, make sure that your words glorify the Lord—especially when using His name to those who are lost.
GREAT AND MIGHTY IS THE NAME OF THE LORD—
USE IT WISELY.