Summary: The more we hallow (value)the name of God, the more love of God flows through us.
THE SACRED NAME
If you have ever taken a “Dale Carnegie Course” on how to win friends and influence people, you know that one technique is to get the person’s name
right: it’s pronounced Ione, not IonE or IonA; no Parry is spelled with an
“A” pArry not an “e”. Going for an interview at college, the Director of Admissions made it very clear to me that the College of Wooster was pronounced Wooster not Woooooster.
The old cliché: “you can call me anything you want just don’t call me late for dinner” is not true.
People don’t like their name mispronounced or misspelled or worse misused. Remember in school days how kids could really be cruel to other kids by mocking or making fun of their name -- Laughinghouse – what kind of name is that? are you an Indian? Or how about the ribbing my school chum Gary used to take for his last name--DeBuvitz- try spelling that one.
Everyone of us here has their own “war” stories about how, if you please,
my name was taken-as the third commandment states it- how my name was taken in vain - misused, abused, treated with no respect.
You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
Here we are getting miffed a bit if someone repeatedly mispronounces or misspells my name, while everyday on some construction site or crass talk radio show, people are using the Lord’s name to swear, tell off-color jokes,make fun of religion. What is particularly galling to me is when I am in the
YMCA men’s locker room (mind you ymca stands for young men’s Christian association) and an older fellow is talking in a casual conversation using the name of God as a cuss word in every other sentence.
You would think that after 4000 years when God gave this commandment to Moses that by now we would get it right, but from the media to the locker room to the office to the street, the Lord’s name suffers greater abuse than ever.
And think not that the second half of this commandment will not be fulfilled:
“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not leave him/her unpunished who takes His name in vain.
Do you remember when the disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray?
Jesus taught them the Lord’s prayer. What is the opening statement?
“Our Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name…
“Hallowed”, sacred, holy be your name oh Heavenly Father. The early devout Jew would not dare to say the name of God; the very name of God was considered too sacred to use- they had substitute names they used instead. The people of Moses’ day thought if your enemy found out and spoke the real name of God, then your enemy could use the power of God against you.
To call or to speak the true name of God was to call down God’s power to help and to save you.
Something that we have all noticed happening in our society is the loss of the sacred. Professional people that were once held in high esteem simply
because of their position are no longer given the respect that was once assumed, like the classroom teacher, the parish priest, the president, because of such things as the sexual abuse scandals in government and the church and schools.