Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. – Romans 10:13
What is in a name?
Naming ceremony dates back to Creation itself. When God created our World, he gave this responsibility to Adam (Gen 2:19). In Bible days, “Names” carried so much meaning and power. When God chose Abraham, he changed his name from Abram (“high father“) to Abraham (“father of many“). We also find that when God blesses Jacob, the first thing he does is to change his name from Jacob (“deceiver“) to Israel (“may God prevail“).
Can we name God?
When Moses asked God for his name (Ex 3:13), God’s reply was – “I AM WHO I AM.” God’s response implied that no single word can describe Him correctly. There are many names in the Bible that refer to God, and each reflects only a particular attribute of God. The Jews even refuse to pronounce God’s name referred to as YHVH (used around 7000 times), called the Tetragrammaton.
Jesus – the name that Saves
Our interest today is in the name of Jesus. Jesus is the son of God, and He is God. Jesus in Hebrew means “God Saves.” He is the summary of all the compound names of God that we read in the Old Testament.
Philippians 2:9-11 says
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
We undergo a lot of struggle to make our tomorrows secure and safe. However, in the process, we become myopic and fail to see beyond a few decades. We shall be living in an arrogant lie if we believe that Death is the end of everything. Bible compares Death to Sleep more than 50 times (1 Thess 4:13-17). It says – Every dead will rise and those in Christ will spend their eternity with God.
Like every other country in this world, the entry into the Promised Land is strictly for Visa holders. Immigrants are strictly forbidden. Though the Visa is very expensive, the good news is that Jesus has purchased it for those who believe in him by his blood.
John Wesley and the Moravian Missionaries
In 1727, fresh out of Oxford Divinity School, John Wesley, one of the founders of Methodism, was perplexed over England’s social problems – slavery, drunkenness, prostitution, and exploitation of poor. When he became a minister of an established church, he went as a missionary to the American Islands in 1735.
On their voyage, a violent storm hit their boat and many including Wesley, unashamedly feared that they would die. But Wesley noticed that a group of Moravian missionaries remained very calm and were not perturbed by the storm. Later, he asked one of them why he was not afraid. “Why should I be afraid?” the Moravian brother questioned. “I know Jesus.” Then he asked pointedly, “Do you know Jesus”? Wesley knew in his heart that his answer was a No and did not respond.
When Wesley came back to England, he met Peter Boehler, a Moravian missionary who invited him to a prayer meeting. On 24 May 1738, Wesley gave his heart to Jesus and understood the biggest truth that Jesus alone can save him. He went on to launch the powerful Methodist movement that led multitudes to Christ.
Saved from an Accident
One day, a six-year-old boy was returning from his school in a Jeep along with his friends. They had to climb a mountain, and as they were halfway, the driver heard a loud sound and lost control of his steering, and immediately, the Jeep broke the side barriers and started running down the slope.
The children were terrified and started shouting. This small boy did not know what to do. Without his knowledge, he gave a loud shout – “Jesus.” After a few seconds, the Jeep hit a tree and stopped. Few died and many very injured but the little boy did not suffer a small scratch. The scriptures say – Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Faith in the Name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus to save but it is only for those who believe in him. There is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved – Acts 4:12. It is not the name per se, but faith in the personality and power of the possessor of that name effects change. When we by faith open our hearts in total surrender to Christ, a change for the better takes place. It may be cataclysmic, like the change Paul experienced on the road to Damascus, or it may be a dawning experience, such as Timothy had. But change will take place – if our commitment to Jesus is total and unreserved.