Intro to the series “Drawing our Strength from the Names of God”
Hallowed Be Thy Name ( Devotion #1)
By Nicole McLeod
“Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name” . Hallowed be Thy Name is the first of the requests that Jesus taught His disciples to pray when they come to God. Father, may Your name (which is holy) be regarded as and treated as Holy… may it be sanctified, glorified and set apart as holy - in all the earth as it is in heaven.
- Hallowed be: (Hagazan) connected to hagios – holy - held in reverence and treated as holy – separate from earth, set apart exalted above all.
- Thy Name: God’s name means all that He Himself is, as revealed and manifested. His nature, His character, His attributes, his personality, His love, his faithfulness and goodness….
Our English word, translated God, doesn’t tell us much about His character and His ways, nor about the way He relates to humankind. It only tells us that He is the Supreme Being in the universe, but in God’s revelation of Himself to Moses and to the prophets of the Old Testament times, we find descriptive names and compound names for God, which reveal much more to us.
Nathan Stone, in his wonderful book The Names of God wrote, “ There is a spiritual significance in the use of these different names. It is much more rational to believe that the great and infinite and eternal God has given us these different names to express different aspects of His being and the different relationships He sustains to His creatures” .
Throughout the Bible, we are given a great opportunity to study these names, and the circumstances that led God to reveal these aspects of His nature to help us know Him and understand His ways. In them, we learn so much about “God”.
In Dr. David Jeremiah's book "Prayer the Great Adventure" he writes: “if we took just one of those names every day and focused on it, Hallowing it, we would develop a much better understanding of who God is. For example, I have a sin problem (as you do), so I need Yahweh Tsidkenu, who is my righteousness. I have a problem being holy as God is holy, so I need Yahweh M'kaddesh, who is my sanctification, I sometimes have an anxiety problem and I need Yahweh Shalom, who is my peace. Once in a while, even though there are lots of people in my life, I am lonely. I need Yahweh Shammah, who is always there for me. I've gone through some sickness and I've desperately needed Yahweh Rophe, my Healer. I have needs in my family and I need Yahweh Jireh, the One who provides. Once in a while I'm not really sure who I am in the Kingdom of God, so I need Yahweh Nissi, who is my Banner. And I certainly couldn't handle my problems, my career, my decisions, without a Shepherd; how glad I am that I have Yahweh Rohi, my constant guide and companion!"
In Exodus 34:5-6 “the Lord descended in the cloud and stood with (Moses) there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. 6 And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth…
His name is Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. This is our God. He is the great I AM, His name is the greatest name, the Divine name, the awesome name, it is glorious, great, holy, majestic and trustworthy… it reveals His nature, it signifies His presence, it represents His power and authority, and it identifies God’s people…
There is an absolutely wonderful collection of God’s Names, in a very easy to read and study format in a book called the Topical Analysis of the Bible by Douglas Buckwalter- edited by Walter Elwell, which I most highly recommend you read. I have made a copy of several pages available on our ministry table for you. (A sample)
The Divine Name Is the Greatest Name
(1) The Divine Name Endures Forever Ps. 135:13
(2) The Divine Name Is Awesome Deut. 28:58; Ps. 99:3; Ps. 111:9
(3) The Divine Name Is beyond Human Understanding, Judg. 13:18
(4) The Divine Name Is Exalted Ps. 138:2; Ps. 148:13
(5) The Divine Name Is Glorious Deut. 28:58; Neh. 9:5; Ps. 66:2; Ps. 79:9
(6) The Divine Name Is Good, Ps. 52:9; Ps. 54:6
(7) The Divine Name Is Great, Josh. 7:9; 1 Sam. 12:22; 2 Chron. 6:32; Ps. 76:1; Ps. 99:3;…
(8) The Divine Name Is Holy Ps. 30:4; Ps. 33:21; Ps. 97:12; Ps. 103:1; Ps. 105:3; Ps. 106:47; …
Is there a particular name of God that is meaningful to you, or one that Has been a strength to you ? *Have ladies share_________. For me, Jehovah Shalom, The Lord our peace._____ share.
Knowing His name, and that He has revealed it in strategic ways and at specific times in History to help us know him, will protects us from misconceptions about who He is, and deceptions that would distort the truth about Him – both of which are very common in our society today.
In the New Testament, we see the fulfillment of all of these names in the person and work of Jesus Christ. Turn with me to John ch. 17: where we see the prayer that Jesus prayed for His followers inJohn 17:3-4 “And this is eternal life that they should know Thee, the only True God and Him who thou did send, even Jesus Christ. I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.”
John 17:6 Jesus praying to the Father says: “I have manifested Thy name unto the men that you gave me out of the world, and I have given them the words which thou gave to me.” He didn’t just teach about God’s name, the character of God, He manifested it – He displayed that character – He perfectly demonstrated God’s love and holiness to lead his disciples towards believing and living what was right before God. Hebrews says of Jesus that He was the “brightness of His glory, the express image of His person. And in everything He did and taught, He magnified the Father and manifested His name.
John 17 :12 While I was with them in the world,[c] I kept them in Your name.
He manifested His name, He kept them in His name and He declared to them His Name. All of the names of God are fulfilled in the person and work of Christ.
John 17:25 O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me. 26 And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”
Albert Barnes: “Let Thy name be celebrated and venerated and esteemed as holy everywhere. It is our desire in word and deed Holy Lord, Hallowed be Thy name.”
With today’s devotion, I have three applications:
A) First, apply this prayer personally: “Hallowed Be Thy Name” in word and deed in my life Lord – The Jews felt his Name, was too holy to cross the lips of a man, so they would remove the vowels and use only the consonants –YHWH, out of an outward form of respect: but when we pray His name would be hallowed in our lives, we are asking that He would be recognized and treated as holy, more than just in word, but also in deed - in our very hearts, in our thoughts, conduct, and actions. May we exalt God in our thinking – think rightly about Him, according to His revelation of Himself to us through His Word. When our physical vision is blurred, we notice right away, but what about our spiritual vision is blurred? The truth is, we cannot see God and ourselves clearly by our own might. We pray because we need His Holy Spirit’s power to to Be Holy for He is Holy, and to keep His name holy in the secret place of our hearts where God sees the truth, and the flow of our actions and choices are decided. We pray because we don’t want to be self-righteous. He alone is the source of holiness, for He alone is holy.
B) Secondly, to apply this prayer in a local sense, let us pray “Hallowed be Thy name” Lord, in our homes, families and church body. May His name be known in our circle as being the Name above all Names, Holy and honored. Friday night, Susie shared how the Lord has put on her heart a call to holiness. She gave us BE HOLY cards. She reminded us that as His redeemed saved people, we have been sanctified, set apart for God’s exclusive use and we are to live like it and glorify God by living godly lives.
“ Give me one pure and holy passion, give me one magnificent obsession, give me one glorious ambition for my life, to know and follow hard after You… this world is empty pale and poor compared to knowing You my Lord, lead me on and I will run after you.”
c) Thirdly, to apply in a missionary sense, let’s pray Hallowed Be Thy Name. It is our desire to see God honored, worshiped and obeyed by people everywhere! It is His desire for His name to be Hallowed, so lets ask for God’s enabling, boldness, and open doors for the gospel to go forth to all the unreached peoples of the earth. Let’s make the most of every opportunity, redeeming the time for the days are evil. God’s name stands for whom He is, so we pray that he would help us and people everywhere to recognize and treat Him as holy, glorified and set apart and worthy of all honor, praise and devotion. Rev.15:4:
“ Who will not fear you, O Lord, and bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous acts have been revealed”
Along with the three application points, I offer you four action points:
Action point #1 ; Make God’s top priority your priority. When Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, the first prayer request He taught them to pray was “Hallowed be Thy Name”. This teaches us to pray that the holiness of His name would be a top priority on earth. People today outside the church don’t know who God is and many wrong messages about God dominate our culture. We become like whom we hang out with – so hang around God, and with people who honor His name, it is contagious! Spend daily time with Him in prayer and contemplate His holiness and flood your mind with who He is. Remember: God is the only source of holiness. Jeremiah 10:6 No one is like you, Lord; you are great, and your name is mighty in power.
Action point #2 Make this prayer part of your personal worship life. There are many beautiful songs and Hymns that praise His Holy Name. Collect songs and hymns to read or sing in your personal worship time, or as you come and go – to listen to in the car, to keep your mind stayed upon Him, trusting in Him throughout the day.
Action point #3: - a challenge: Study one name per day and pray for that name to be in your thoughts for the day, and let it bring you to worship Him and hallow that name in your life. His names are so rich in meaning, and are so comforting and faith building. We desire that the name of God and God himself in all the ways He has revealed Himself and has made himself known to us will bring Him glory and honor. Remember, as you learn the names of God, that this amazing God is your loving Father in Heaven, who deeply cares for you, and who has said, I am with you always.
Action point #4 Be willing to be the answer to your prayer by continuing the work Jesus commissioned about 2000 years ago to manifest God’s name to the world and make disciples. Share what you are learning about God’s name with those you come into contact with. Share them with your kids when you drive, or at the table, the gym, or with anyone you talk with. Pray for, support, encourage or even write to missionaries who are lifting up the name of Jesus to the lost and unreached world.
What was it about His name, the name of the Lord that was so Holy and so worthy, and so powerful to the disciples and the early church that they would risk their lives, imprisonment, beatings and even when forbidden by the civil authorities to teach or preach in Jesus name?
Acts: 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
Paul tells us “God has given to Jesus a name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus, every knee should bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is lord to the glory of God the Father.” Hallowed by His name.
Closing prayer: Hallowed be Thy name Lord, in our world, and our country, and our communities, in our church, in our homes, in our hearts, in our devotions here together. May Your name be revealed and referenced and understood and learned and magnified and worshipped for your name is You. You are the great I AM the one who is eternal in the heavens and forever the same yesterday today and forever at the same the most holy it is who You are as self disclosed and revealed to us throughout History in Your Word, which you spoke and have written so that we may know You and be saved by faith in your Son the Messiah, whose name is the fulfillment of all of your names as Scripture has declared. In Jesus name I pray, thank you and amen.