Honoring God’s Name
In the book of Malachi (Malachi 3:16) we read that “a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and always thought about the honor of his name.”
What is the honor of God’s name? What does it mean to think about it?
I suspect that many of us have our own ideas about what would honor God’s name in different circumstances.
The first thing I noticed is that this is a continual rethinking: you can’t simply act as if you always know what brings glory to God’s name, as if it never changed in different circumstances.
The second thing is that our ideas are suspect, because we are the fallen people. The only trustworthy way to think about God’s name and what brings it honor, is by study of the Scriptures, and especially the example of Christ.
For example, we can honor God’s name by thinking what the name is. In the Hebrew Scriptures the name of God is YHWH, the Tetragrammaton. It means the living God: the God who is not a dead idol, but who acts.
In the New Testament the name is Jesus. Joseph is told to name the child Jesus … why? Because he will save his people from their sins. His name is the name of salvation. It is in his name that we are taught to pray—not our own name and our own merit, but his. It is his name that we are to gather in. It is his name that we are to baptize in. It is his name at which every knee shall bow, and which every tongue will confess. It is his name that is superior to the names of the angels.