Saturday, September 3, 2016

Living up to the Name

These past few weeks, we have constantly heard and read the names of Olympians as well as professional sports figures.  There have been accomplishments to celebrate and failures to remind us that even the best can have a difficult day.  This year, I cannot tell you the name of every athlete or country that won gold, silver, or bronze medals, much less remember those achievements years from now.  Some names will continue to resurface because of the athlete’s continued success, especially if it is one you have had the privilege to meet, are related to, or represents a sport you are interested in.

Unfortunately, we have also seen the impact and consequences that not living up to your name can bring.  We all make mistakes, but it seems that athletes and professional sports figures carry the load and responsibility of being role models and thus the need to continually examine and think about their thoughts, actions, and deeds.  There may be times when choices they make cause their name to be tarnished, endorsements to be pulled, or careers to end.

But there is a name that has and will pass the test of time forever. Because of Jesus’ obedience to death on the cross, God exalted Him and gave Him a name that is above all names.  Jesus is the Way, Truth, and Life.  No one comes to God except through Him.  It is through Jesus that we have access to the Father.  Jesus is “God with us!”  And one day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord.

In Philippians 5, Paul reminds us that those who bear the name Christian are to have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.  And because of Jesus we have a new name, “Children of God.”  That is a name that is worth living up to, taking to heart, protecting, and sharing for a lifetime.   

A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.
Proverbs 22:1

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
 Who, being in very nature God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
 rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death—
        even death on a cross!

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2:5-11

She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
Matthew 1:21

In his name the nations will put their hope.”
Matthew 12:21

But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
John 20:31

And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’
Acts 2:21

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”
Acts 4:12

for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Romans 10:13

See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
I John 3:1

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