2017-11-27 A Name Above All Names

Good Morning!

We’re winding down November, folks. I started off this morning writing October. I’m a month behind….

Last night Facebook lit up with sunset posts. I love it! Today, I am using a picture taken last night by Mary Lynn Napier Johanson, with permission, from my neighbor’s property. I think you’ll agree it’s one of a kind! There is something about a sunrise or sunset that can make the whole world stop. Of course, most people completely miss noticing them; but when they do, they are in awe.

Awe of what? Or whom? For those of us who believe, we know all this was created by God. Most people will agree to that. We take it a set further. Jesus is the one who did all of this.

John 1:1-5 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

Colossians 1:15-20 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities – all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

Hebrews 1:1-4 Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down and the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.

We could go other places to find the same support thorough scripture. The long and short of it is that Jesus wasn’t simply born 2,000 years ago. Furthermore, don’t let the through hims and for hims trip you up. This Trinity business can confuse us so that we completely lock up and miss the big picture. If you see one, you see all three. Yes, scripture tells us that they are separate with specific roles, but it also says that each dwell in the other.

Long story short, when we see a beautiful sunrise or sunset, Jesus should come to mind. Want something to do today? Pray for those who don’t see this. They need it. Desperately.

Romans 1:18-23 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

Jesus. He’s the one who made the sunrise and sunset possible for us to be in awe and give glory to him, the Father, and the Holy Spirit. If you want to be a radical, give thanks to Jesus for the stunning sunsets. For the most part, people are ok with you saying something about God. Jesus, on the other hand, gets a whole different reaction. Think about that for today. See if you don’t notice this in your own flesh. Every time you say, “God” say “Jesus” instead. I bet you will find it difficult. Why? Because our flesh hates Jesus. We absolutely hate him. Yes, we have a new life and Holy Spirit living within us, but our flesh still hates Jesus. Try that experiment and see. I still stumble on his name. Oh, I can still use it to curse – really easy to do that! Otherwise, I have had to practice saying his name, out loud, over and over, so that I might use the name “Jesus” with dignity. If you don’t believe me, try it. Then, practice the name of Jesus so that you might enjoy doing this in public:

Philippians 2:9-11 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Father, I pray that my brothers and sisters will test themselves on this to see if they, indeed, may be ashamed of the name of Jesus, like I am. Let us be aware of this and train our bodies and tongues to use Jesus in our speech, not to replace you, Father, but to glorify his name so that the whole world will know who we are talking about. We desire that everyone know we are talking about the one, true, and living God, Three-In-On, and not some imaginary “god” that the world is comfortable with. We are not ashamed of the Gospel or of the name of Jesus. Yes, we actually are, but we desire you to completely change that about us. Completely. Amen.

Copyright © 2017 Scott Powers

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