In the name of Jesus!
“And then I met Jesus.”
I was listening to a man tell his life story. He had come from a dark place of brokenness and bondage to sin. When he used the name “Jesus,” his face broke into a smile and he said it with a sense of awe and respect I wasn’t used to.
He had experienced power in the name of Jesus! He had experienced love in the name of Jesus! When Jesus entered his life, he was set free. It was a miracle.
Now, any time this man would say the name of Jesus, it was as if he was talking about a celebrity he had met. His face lit up with joy and his countenance revealed his deep relationship with the One who had set him free. He spoke of Jesus as a friend, someone he knew intimately, but with a level of uncommon respect and honour that surprised me.
Unfortunately, we often hear the name of Jesus spoken with toneless apathy. It is often used as a swear word or maybe worse, as if it has no meaning whatsoever. What does that imply? What does it say about me and my relationship to Jesus, if I can say His name in a bored, indifferent manner? If you said anyone else’s name in that way, it would not indicate a healthy relationship. So, what does this say about us?
Saying the name of Jesus flippantly is like playing with dynamite. There is power in His name. Not because of the word itself, but because of the One who bears it.
The Gospel of John says, “In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God and the word was God. By him and through him all things were made.” When you say the name “Jesus,” you are talking about the One who created the universe.
In the book of Acts, Peter says to a lame man, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk” … and he did. People were baptized in the name of Jesus. People were set free from the power of darkness in the name of Jesus. Someday, “at the name of Jesus, every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth” (Phil. 2:10).
Does your face light up when you speak the name of Jesus? Does your face say “I have found a treasure—a pearl of great price”? Can others see your great joy as you give up everything you have for the One who is worth so much? As you say His name, is it clear that you know you are speaking about the creator of the universe, the One who is love and has set you free from the power of sin and death?
We often think about discipleship as an academic discipline; learning how to understand the Bible, studying theology, or learning church doctrine. But discipleship is a process designed to lead us into a deeper relationship with Jesus; to know His incomparably great love for us and to have our eyes opened to the incomparably great power of salvation which is now at work in us. When that happens, our lives are transformed and we begin to say the name of Jesus with a whole new meaning.
Has your life been transformed “in the name of Jesus”? Can others tell when they hear you speak his name? Maybe it’s time to find someone who talks about Jesus in a way that speaks of His love and power. Ask them how it happened and ask them if they will lead you to a new understanding of the love of Jesus. It’s a process called discipleship.
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