Written By: Hayward Chappell – Vandalia, Ohio
There is a beautiful spiritual song by the Gaithers that perhaps you have heard or sung, “There is Something About that Name.” What is it about that name?
“Jesus”- our savior, redeemer, healer, our light in the darkness, defender, protector, foundation in a storm. Our righteousness, sanctification and our wisdom. Our advocate standing at the right hand of God.
What’s in a name? How did Jesus get his name? What does it mean to me? What am I to do with it? Pause and consider.
Jesus the Savior
In the beginning, God unfolded His glorious plan for His man and woman. They walked in the garden worshipping Him and tending to His creation. Did He have a name? Or was He just all they knew and needed?
Simply there, an abiding presence, the reality of being. The voice of beauty and love.
Until they listened to another voice. A voice that undermined all that God is and drove a wedge through their hearts seducing them from that perfect time of grace. Suddenly, God seemed distant and His voice had faded. They lost sight of who He was and fear crashed in.
But God, rich in mercy, compelled by love, unfolded His beautiful plan to reconcile His woman and man that they might know Him again with that tender intimacy, that fearless freedom, that gentle peace of their time in the garden.
The plan’s name was Jesus- “the Lord saves.” Emmanuel- “God is with us.”
There’s something about that name.
God called Abraham and he responded and called upon the name of the Lord- Yahweh, Elohim, Jehovah.” He manifested different facets of His name as He unfolded His plan.
Jehovah-Jireh- “the Lord will see and provide”
Jehovah-Ropheka- “the Lord that healeth”
Jehovah-Shalom- “the Lord our peace”
Jehovah-Zidkenu- “the Lord our righteousness”
Jehovah-Roi- “the Lord my Shepherd”
Names of Jehovah graphic designed by Sapphire Dreams Photography
When the children of Israel were enslaved in Egypt, God raised up a deliverer, Moses. Moses asked God, “When I go and tell your people that the God of your fathers has sent me and they ask ‘What is His name?’ What do I tell them?”
“And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘ AM has sent me to you.’” Moreover God said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel: ‘The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My memorial to all generations.’” Exodus 3:14-15 NKJV
God said, “I AM THAT I AM”- I will be what I need to be (or become). I will be whatever I need to be for you in that moment.
Later, Moses asked to see God’s glory. God said, “I will make my goodness pass before you and I will proclaim the name of the Lord.”
When He passed by He proclaimed, “The Lord God, merciful, gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.”
God’s Plan Unfolds
What’s in a name? A vast net holding so much – the essence, truth, reality of a presence. A reputation, authority, embodiment, and yet much more.
God’s plan unfolded. Always faithful to His promises. Deliberate and unstoppable.
And then, the grace of God appeared to all men, bringing salvation. This grace had a name– Jesus– “God saves.” Emmanuel – “God is with us.”
There is something about that name.
Jesus, the radiance of God’s glory, the exact representation of his being. He knew his Father’s name and bore witness to it.
Jesus inherited a name. He made himself a name. And God gave him a name above every name, not only in this world, but in that which is to come.
This is what he said:
He said- “He who has seen me has seen the Father.”
He said- “I have manifested your name unto the men which you gave me.”
He said- “The works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness of me.”
He said- “I AM the light of the world.”
He said- “I AM the true vine.”
He said- “I AM the resurrection and the life.”
He said- “I AM the good shepherd.”
He said- “I AM the way, the truth, and the life.”
There’s something about that name.
Jesus gave us the authority and right to use his name: to pray to the Father, cast out devils, speak in tongues, lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.
“And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” Mark 16:17-18 NKJV
Freedom through That Name
The first century believers knew that there was something about that name. In the name of Jesus of Nazareth a lame man rose up and walked, leaping and praising God – made whole, for there is no other name under heaven whereby we must be saved. A woman, tormented by evil spirits and used by men for financial gain, was miraculously set free in that name.
That beautiful, powerful, glorious name does the same for us today. Our loving Father has reconciled us to Himself through the selfless, loving work of His Son.
And NOW his name is ours.
So – what’s that SOMETHING about that name?
Pause and consider.
“And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:17 NKJV
Hayward and his wife Nancy met doing musical theater in ministry. They have been married and pastors for 39 years. They live in Vandalia, Ohio and are blessed with two wonderful sons, their beautiful wives, and four beloved grandchildren who live in Texas.