This is a devotion I gave at our monthly ladies meeting.
What's in a name?

You may remember the line from Romeo and Juliet- "What's in a name? that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet;"
Their struggle was that one lived under the name Monteque and the other Capulet ( these 2 families were feuding.)

A name can mean the title by which a person is labeled or a testimony which a person has lived.

Proverbs 22:1  A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold.

Notice the word good is added for clarity, but not in the original text because the original word depicted honor, authority and character. Today we talk about someone having a good name or a bad name, but then the word was only used in a good way. Have you ever heard the phrase "He has made a name for himself"? It means he has done something good that merited a good reputation.

This verse is saying that a godly testimony is what we should be working on rather than the accumulation of things.The second part of the verse "...loving favour rather than silver and gold."
It transfers the same verb phrase "is rather to be chosen" without repeating it. So the complete principle of the verse is "A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour (is rather to be chosen) than silver and gold."

The word "and" between the two statements is also not original. So the verse is making a declaration in the first statement and then explaining the declaration in the second statement. A good name is equal to loving favour with God and men. Great riches is equal to silver and gold.
So from this verse we see that a name is not only a title but a testimony.

I. Family Name
My last name is Monk. Above is the Monk family Crest. It is my understanding that the lions represent the Motto "bravely, faithfully, happily".
Many times in the Bible a person's name has a meaning that tells something about that person.
Ex. Gen 3:20- Eve- Mother of all living.
      Gen_4:21  And his brother's name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ.
Gen_10:25  And unto Eber were born two sons: the name of one was Peleg; for in his days was the earth divided; and his brother's name was Joktan. 
Strong's gives the definition of Peleg as earthquake.

We named our first child, our son, Tony: after his Daddy who was proud to give his son his name. Our daughter, Natalie's name means Christmas Child. She was born close to Christmas. Our youngest child, we named Bethany because we liked the sound of it. Her name means house of God. Incidentally, she was born while we were in our first pastorate. The church paid the medical bills because we didn't have healthcare coverage at the time. We called her the church baby. Her middle name, Danae, we had heard from Dr. James Dobson's daughter. We were hesitant at first to use the name because it means Diana (like the pagan goddess.) Then we acknowledged that God is sovereign over all, so we were not going to let the devil keep us from using a name we liked. We weren't worshiping Diana. We just thought it sounded pretty. Naming a child properly is a worthwhile pursuit. You don't pick just any name.
To avoid confusion name a child what you will call him/her. I had trouble all through school because my legal name was Donna Alicia, but my parents decided to call me Lisa.

II. Faith Name
A new name is given to persons who have spiritual adoption. 
Isa 62:2  And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the LORD shall name. To Abraham Gen_17:5, To Sarah Gen_17:15, To Jacob Gen_32:28 ,To Paul Act_13:9

Jesus, is our ultimate example lived Prov. 22:1
Luke 2:52 says, "And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man." 
Jesus did not seek riches while on earth, but rather humbled himself and obeyed the will of the Father.
Php 2:8  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 
Php 2:9  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
Php 2:10  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow

We are ambassadors for Christ.
2Co 5:20  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.

We are called "Christians." We need to live up to the name. This takes us back to Proverbs 22:1

III. Future Name

We have a new name in Glory.

Rev 2:17  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.

Even Jesus will have a name that we don't know.
Rev 19:12  His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.

A Family name and crest was something people were proud of.
We should be proud to be called Christians. And we should live in a way that people think well of the name Christian.

Because we have a family title or name, a faith title or name and a future title or name, we should guard our testimony so that we bring glory to the Name that is above every name because one day we will bow before him.

No comments:

Homeschooling Help

Get Bibles, gifts, music, and more!