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Friday, June 5 2015
Ecclesiastes 7: What Did Jesus Say About His Name?
"And in that day ye shall ask Me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask The Father in My Name, He will give it you"
To an English speaker, referring to the number 1 as "one" is true and accurate. But what if a German speaker called the number 1 as "eins"? Or if a Spanish speaking person referred to the number 1 as "uno"? Or if a French speaker referred to the number 1 as "un"? Would all of the others be wrong and disqualified from counting because they didn't call 1 "one"? Or are they all right because they are truly and accurately describing exactly the same thing in the language that God gave them to speak? The answer is obvious. 1 is 1 is 1 - regardless of what it is called in any language. Reality has no vain "exceptionalism" in expression.
Many debate about the Messiah's "real name." But consider. Many truly-righteous people knew Him by names that others were not given to know - by the LORD Himself. Example: Abraham, Isaac and Jacob/Israel knew Him as "God Almighty" (an English-language rendering of the Hebrew, pronounced El-Shaddai), while Moses knew Him as YHVH or YHWH (people debate about that too) - that has been variously rendered into English as "LORD," "JEHOVAH" (one of the attempts to add vowels between the YHVH or YHWH; see Who Created Jehovah?) and numerous others that the "Sacred Name Movement" (that originated from a small English-speaking, Hebrew-imitating group that didn't even exist before the late 1800s) have rendered or interpreted for and from themselves.
"6:2 And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am the LORD: 6:3 And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them." (Exodus 6:2-3 KJV)
When the LORD gave Moses the Commandment "20:7 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain" (Exodus 20:7 KJV), does that mean that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob/Israel did take His Name in vain because the LORD identified Himself to them in their own language and dialect that was different than that used for the Israelites of Moses' time? Of course not.
The purpose of "speaking in tongues," which simply means other actual and genuine languages, was to take the Name of the LORD and His Gospel to all nations in languages that they could understand. Preaching in Hebrew to non-Hebrew speakers would in itself be taking the LORD's Name in vain. That principle applies to every other language - as proven in the famous Pentecost event recorded at the beginning of the Book of Acts.
"2:8 And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born? 2:9 Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia, 2:10 Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, 2:11 Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God." (Acts 2:8-11 KJV)
Those of the true Church of God, which means people of God (not a building, not a corporation, not a man-following cult), have existed all around the world since the most-ancient times. While they speak hundreds of languages and dialects, they all preach the one and only true Gospel (see What Gospel Did Jesus Preach?) and the identity of the one and only true Messiah (see The LORD God Our Saviour) in their own tongues - their own languages. Just a few examples from hundreds of other languages (that use the Roman alphabet; there are many others yet besides that) - that are just as true and valid to them as is "Jesus" (or any of the other renderings) to speakers of English.
All of the "Names" are referring to the same Messiah - exactly as Abraham and Moses knew Him by different renderings of His Name. Anyone who blasphemes Him by the Name that they know Him by in their language is guilty of blasphemy, while anyone who worships and obeys Him by the Name that they know Him by in their language is righteous. That example and precedent was set by two of the most righteous people that ever lived - Abraham and Moses. The LORD's Name isn't about personal vanity or linguistic arrogance.
Translations of the Holy Scriptures into other languages began in the Holy Scriptures themselves. Most of the first Christians at the time of the Messiah's first coming spoke Aramaic (the Messiah's own primary language; see the Fact Finder question below) or Hebrew - and yet what they said and did in Aramaic and Hebrew was recorded in the New Testament in Greek - the "world language" of that time. Even in the New Testament itself, native Hebrew speakers and native Greek speakers knew and talked about the one and only Messiah by different names - but none were more right or righteous than any other. A Holy Bible is holy, regardless of what tongue, language, that it must use to serve those to whom it is given by the Spirit of God.
What are some of the things that the Messiah said (in Aramaic; see the Fact Finder question below) about His Name?
"7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. 7:24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: 7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. 7:26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: 7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it." (Matthew 7:21-27 KJV)
King Solomon was a man who "knew the LORD" better than most people ever did or will in this life. But when he discarded the Wisdom that the LORD gave to him, he lost, along with many other things, his ability to not take the LORD's Name in vain. By Solomon's own declaration, everything in Creation became "vanity" to him - including his, in doing so, own taking the LORD's Name in vain. It doesn't matter what language that Solomon used to do it; the result on the day of reckoning will be the same - for Solomon and for everyone else (see Ecclesiastes 1: Solomon's Ballad To Losers).
"7:1 A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one's birth. 7:2 It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.
Fact Finder: What was the Messiah's primary language in the time that He was born as a man?
This Day In History, June 5
70: As prophesied by Jesus Christ (see What Did Jesus Christ Say About Those Stones?), Roman legions under Titus breached the middle wall of Jerusalem in the Siege of Jerusalem (see A History Of Jerusalem: Titus And The Zealots and Legions Of Men And Angels).
1249: During the Sixth Crusade, King Louis IX of France landed in Egypt (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy).
1568: Ferdinand, the Duke of Alba, put down the Calvinist insurrection in Ghent, Belgium.
1661: Isaac Newton was admitted as a student to Trinity College, Cambridge.
1783: Joseph and Jacques Montgolfier launched the first sustained, manned flight when their balloon rose an estimated 1,500 feet and flew 7,500 feet at Annonay, France.
1806: Holland was declared a kingdom with Louis Bonaparte as its king.
1817: The first Great Lakes steamer, the Frontenac of Kingston, Ontario, was launched.
1827: Athens fell to the Ottomans (listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire).
1832: In Paris, the June Rebellion attempted to overthrow King Louis-Philippe.
1849: Denmark became a constitutional monarchy under the terms of its new constitution.
1851: Harriet Beecher Stowe's anti-slavery Uncle Tom's Cabin (or Life Among the Lowly) began to be published in the abolitionist newspaper National Era.
1862: The Treaty of Saigon was signed, surrendering areas of southern Vietnam to France (there was no North and South Vietnam - that partition was created by France).
1883: The first regularly-scheduled Orient Express from Paris.
1933: The U.S. Congress abrogated the gold standard (i.e. money thereafter became printed paper with nothing of value to validate its face value).
1944: During the Second World War, over 1,000 British bombers dropped 5,000 tons of bombs on German gun batteries on the Normandy coast in preparation for the D-Day invasion on June 6.
1944: The first British gliders landed on French soil in preparation for D-Day.
1945: At the end of the Second World War, the Allied Control Commission took control of Germany, dividing it into four occupation zones.
1967: The Six Day War between Israel and Arab neighbors Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Iraq and Lebanon began. After it was over, Israel had taken the Sinai Desert, the city of Jerusalem and the west bank of the Jordan River. The third major Israel-Arab war (see A History Of Jerusalem: War And Peace).
1968: Robert Kennedy was shot in Los Angeles, just after declaring victory in the California primary, by Palestinian-Arab immigrant Sirhan Sirhan who opposed Kennedy's pro-Israel statements after the Six Day War between Israel and Arab neighbors the previous year.
1975: The Suez Canal opened for the first time since the 1967 Six-Day War (see Israel's Wars In The Twentieth Century).
1977: The first personal computer, the Apple II, went on sale.
1984: Prime Minister of India Indira Gandhi ordered an attack on the Golden Temple, the holiest site of the Sikh religion (it may have later been the excuse for her assassination by one of her own bodyguards).
2003: A heat wave in Pakistan and India produced temperatures of over 50°C (122°F).
2006: Serbia declared independence from Serbia and Montenegro.