Today’s Reading: Small Catechism, Second Commandment
You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God. What does this mean? We should fear and love God so that we do not curse, swear, use satanic arts, lie, or deceive by His name, but call upon it in every trouble, pray, praise, and give thanks. (Small Catechism, Second Commandment)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. The Lord has given you His Name. He’s labeled you as His own. You’re His. In the waters of the Holy Font God placed His Name on you, for you were baptized in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. He’s given His Name to you so that you can “call upon it in every trouble, pray, praise, and give thanks.”
So do you? Well, we certainly turn toward God when things aren’t going too well. But what about at other times? How do you use God’s name? Do you pray at other times? Do you always praise and give thanks? Or do you do other things with God’s Name? Do you use it to swear by, to cover up a lie, to deceive anyone? Have you used it as a curse word? How have we treated that great gift the Lord has given us?
For all this there’s one label, one Name that rescues: “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.” “Jesus” the name that means “Yahweh saves.” There on Calvary Jesus, bearing our misuse of God’s Name, His name, shed His blood and died. He rose and left that in the tomb. He gives that to you in your Baptism, when He gave you God’s Name. He won’t take His Name from you. You’re His, and that’s not going to change. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
“Do not My holy name disgrace, Do not My Word of truth debase. Praise only that as good and true Which I Myself say and do.” Have mercy, Lord! (These Are the Holy Ten Commands, LSB 581:3)