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Holy Name

161229The LORD is king! Let the earth rejoice; let the many coastlands be glad! Clouds and thick darkness are all around him; righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne. Fire goes before him, and consumes his adversaries on every side. His lightnings light up the world; the earth sees and trembles. The mountains melt like wax before the LORD, before the Lord of all the earth. The heavens proclaim his righteousness; and all the peoples behold his glory. All worshipers of images are put to shame, those who make their boast in worthless idols; all gods bow down before him. Zion hears and is glad, and the towns of Judah rejoice, because of your judgments, O God. For you, O LORD, are most high over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods. The LORD loves those who hate evil; he guards the lives of his faithful; he rescues them from the hand of the wicked. Light dawns for the righteous, and joy for the upright in heart. Rejoice in the LORD, O you righteous, and give thanks to his holy name! (Psalm 97, NRSV)

His Holy Name deserves our thanks and praise!

The earth will rejoice and make glad because of the wonderful things the creator has done!

Will you?

Will you praise His Holy Name for all He has done for creation?

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His name

Then Peter began to speak to them: “I truly understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ—he is Lord of all. That message spread throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John announced: how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power; how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. We are witnesses to all that he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; but God raised him on the third day and allowed him to appear, not to all the people but to us who were chosen by God as witnesses, and who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead. All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” (Acts 10:34-43, NRSV)

All are acceptable to Him.

We can have forgiveness of sins through His name. All the prophets testify about Him, and through Him we can be forgiven.

He died for our sins, and we are witnesses to this in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and to all the corners of the world.

He died on the tree, so that we might be set free.

Be His witness, and know it is only in His name that we are redeemed.

 

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Name Day 25 Advent Picture a Day

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Posted by on 2014/12/24 in Advent, Devotional

 

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A new name…

That night he arose and took his two wives, his two female slaves, and his eleven children and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. And he took them and sent them across the stream. Then he sent across all his possessions. And Jacob remained alone, and a man wrestled with him until the breaking of the dawn. And when he saw that he could not prevail against him, he struck his hip socket, so that Jacob’s hip socket was sprained as he wrestled with him. Then he said, “Let me go, for dawn is breaking.” But he answered, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” Then he said to him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Jacob.” And he said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have struggled with God and with men and have prevailed.” Then Jacob asked and said, “Please tell me your name.” And he said, “Why do you ask this—for my name?” And he blessed him there. Then Jacob called the name of the place Peniel which means “I have seen God face to face and my life was spared.” Then the sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, and he was limping because of his hip. Therefore the Israelites do not eat the sinew of the sciatic nerve that is upon the socket of the hip unto this day, because he struck the socket of the thigh of Jacob at the sinew of the sciatic nerve. (Genesis 33:22-32, ESV)

How many of us have wrestled with God? Or an angel?

Well I guess we all could say we have, especially if we ever felt God calling us to do something and then we said, “really you want me to do that? I’m not able to do that…”

We all wrestle with God, maybe not in a physical sense but all of us struggle with following where He is calling us to go and be and to do what He is asking us to.

And just like Jacob we all have the opportunity to get a new name from God. At the font, God names us and claims us as His own. And while the pastor may use the same name out parents gave us, God calls us by a new name, “beloved child!”

You are His beloved child and by that name He is calling you…

 

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The sweet sound of your name

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.’ Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went towards the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. Then the disciples returned to their homes. But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. They said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’ She said to them, ‘They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.’ When she had said this, she turned round and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? For whom are you looking?’ Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’ She turned and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabbouni!’ (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, ‘Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” ’ Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, ‘I have seen the Lord’; and she told them that he had said these things to her. (John 20:1-18, NRSV)

Close your eyes… And remember the sound of your greatest relative calling your name.

Can you hear the sound of your mother calling your name?

Can you hear the voice of your father calling your name?

Your brother? Your sister? Grandmother? Grandfather?

Isn’t it sweet to hear your name come flowing off their lips…

Now you can see and feel how Mary felt that morning at the tomb.

Distraught and in anguish because her savior was gone. She did not eve recognize Him…

But then He says her name! And she knows who He is. He is not dead! He is alive!

And if you listen, you will hear Him call your name!

And how sweet is the sound of your name as it flows off the lips of your Savior!

 

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Name ~ Day 46 ~ Photo a Day Challenge Lent 2014

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If only…

Now the angel of the Lord came and sat under the oak at Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, as his son Gideon was beating out wheat in the wine press, to hide it from the Midianites. The angel of the Lord appeared to him and said to him, ‘The Lord is with you, you mighty warrior.’ Gideon answered him, ‘But sir, if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all his wonderful deeds that our ancestors recounted to us, saying, “Did not the Lord bring us up from Egypt?” But now the Lord has cast us off, and given us into the hand of Midian.’ Then the Lord turned to him and said, ‘Go in this might of yours and deliver Israel from the hand of Midian; I hereby commission you.’ He responded, ‘But sir, how can I deliver Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.’ The Lord said to him, ‘But I will be with you, and you shall strike down the Midianites, every one of them.’ Then he said to him, ‘If now I have found favour with you, then show me a sign that it is you who speak with me. Do not depart from here until I come to you, and bring out my present, and set it before you.’ And he said, ‘I will stay until you return.’ So Gideon went into his house and prepared a kid, and unleavened cakes from an ephah of flour; the meat he put in a basket, and the broth he put in a pot, and brought them to him under the oak and presented them. The angel of God said to him, ‘Take the meat and the unleavened cakes, and put them on this rock, and pour out the broth.’ And he did so. Then the angel of the Lord reached out the tip of the staff that was in his hand, and touched the meat and the unleavened cakes; and fire sprang up from the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened cakes; and the angel of the Lord vanished from his sight. Then Gideon perceived that it was the angel of the Lord; and Gideon said, ‘Help me, Lord God! For I have seen the angel of the Lord face to face.’ But the Lord said to him, ‘Peace be to you; do not fear, you shall not die.’ Then Gideon built an altar there to the Lord, and called it, The Lord is peace. To this day it still stands at Ophrah, which belongs to the Abiezrites. (Judges 6:11-24, NRSV)

Don’t you wish that it was really this easy?

That God would just show up and some in a burning bush and call your name?

Or come and sit beneath the tree and tell you what to do?

Would you listen?

Gideon, Moses and a lot more questioned God. They didn’t believe God would call them, or use them.

They did not feel worthy…

So they question and try to get out of it.

If only God would tell us or show us a clear sign then we would know and we would follow…

If Only…

Would you?

 

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