Claim the Name!

protect them with Your Name which you have given Me

John 17:11
Acts 1:12-14; Psalm 27:1,4,7-8; 1 Peter 4:13-16; John 17:1-11

Sermon Week/Year

Seventh Sunday of Easter, A

In Biblical times, peoples’ attitudes toward names and titles were steeped in meaning. For example, in invoking the Name of God, the pious Jews used the word “Yahweh,” which, standing alone, was a complete expression of their understanding of the Divine. Spelled out in our own terms, Yahweh means something like this: “The Self-Existent Being who determines His own destiny and that of the world.” Invoking the Name of “Yahweh” was a profound expression of faith in the God who presides over all creation. For pious Jews, it summarized God’s destiny, as Lord and Master of all He created.

Properly invoked, the Name of the Messiah is a profound statement of Christian Faith. In Luke’s Gospel we read: “the name Jesus was given the child, the name the angel had given Him before He was conceived” (Luke 2:21). The symbolic Name the angel had given Him was “Emmanuel,” which means “God with us.” Jesus’ messianic mission — His destiny, if you will — was…

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