What’s In a Name?

John 1:35-42

John was standing with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said, “Behold, the Lamb of God.” The two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus. Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” — which translated means Teacher —, “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come, and you will see.” So they went and saw where Jesus was staying, and they stayed with him that day. It was about four in the afternoon. Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus. He first found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the Messiah” — which is translated Christ —. Then he brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon the son of John; you will be called Cephas” — which is translated Peter.

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The importance of a name cannot be overstated.  Whether it’s your first or last name, the meanings and significance of both echo throughout Eternity.  When we get Home, Jesus may very well change our names; like He did for Peter (formerly Simon), Paul (formerly Saul), etc.  Names are so significant that Zacharias’ voice was returned to him after his Son’s birth, just so that he could emphatically-tell those present at his naming that his name would be John (Gabriel had told him in the Temple, “… your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will give him the name John” (Luke 1:13)).  The same thing happened via Gabriel with our Virgin Mother Mary when she was told that she needed to name the Messiah, Jesus (“You will become pregnant, give birth to a son, and name him Jesus (Luke 1:31)).  So, whether you’re a “Mc”, a “Ski”, and so on, most of us are well-aware of the significance and history of our Family’s surname.  I recently took our nine (9) year old Daughter on a baby-name website to show her the significance of our given, first names.  It was amazing to see what the various names meant – many going back to ancient times and Biblical gifts.  In Jesus’ days, it was clear that your first (given) and last (surname) names were incredibly important.  It was a critical part of births, marriages, and deaths; it still is today.  To the King that has the “Name above all names” (Philippians 2:9), let us eagerly look forward to getting our Heavenly-names while remembering to be Grateful for the ones that we have today and the Blessings given to us to name our own Children and ourselves.

Published by Gregg McDonald

Gregg McDonald is a Founding Member of Men As Christ (MAC); an int'l Christian Faith Group that shares the Word of God with ~30,000 people around the world in 114 countries. He is all about Faith, Family, and Love and enjoys the opportunity to share God's love with everyone.

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