Tag Archives: names

Job 42:10-17; Psalms 1:1-5:7

These passages pulse with life. I notice the line separating before from after. It is a significant mark. Life before the trial. Life after. My own life is marked by before-and-after events, so I pay special attention to Job’s story.

10 After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before. 11 All his brothers and sisters and everyone who had known him before came and ate with him in his house. They comforted and consoled him over all the trouble the Lord had brought on him, and each one gave him a piece of silver and a gold ring.

12 The Lord blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the former part. He had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, a thousand yoke of oxen and a thousand donkeys. 13 And he also had seven sons and three daughters. 14 The first daughter he named Jemimah, the second Keziah and the third Keren-Happuch. 15 Nowhere in all the land were there found women as beautiful as Job’s daughters, and their father granted them an inheritance along with their brothers.

16 After this, Job lived a hundred and forty years; he saw his children and their children to the fourth generation. 17 And so Job died, an old man and full of years. (Job 42:10-17, NIV, emphasis mine)

This story has a sort of happy ending, but I always wondered if the restoration ever made the loss go away–especially when it came to Job losing his (before) children. In life after, he has ten more children. I take special note that his daughters’ names are mentioned specifically. In addition, they are seen as beautiful. And even more than that, they were given an inheritance along with their brothers. They were treasured and honored. While the Bible doesn’t speak of this directly, as I read this paragraph, I notice life post-loss with a new appreciation. Post-loss, life and all the things that can be taken away reveal their value. And it’s not to say these things/people weren’t valued before, but that in light of loss, moments in the after seem more precious. Maybe that’s why Job’s daughters’ names were mentioned, and that they were so beautiful, and that he made sure to leave something for each of them as well–because he had a new appreciation for life and its abundance.

Lord, I am so grateful you know my name. I’m so grateful that you love me. This reading is a gift to me.

Courtney (66books365)

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1 Chronicles 1:17-3:9

These were the sons of Israel: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, Dan, Joseph, Benjamin, Naphtali, Gad and Asher. The sons of Judah were Er, Onan, and Shelah. These three were born to him by the daughter of Shua, the Canaanitess. Er, the firstborn of Judah, was wicked in the sight of the Lord; so He killed him. And Tamar, his daughter-in-law, bore him Perez and Zerah. All the sons of Judah were five.” 1 Chronicles 2:1-4 NIV

It’s a shame that the only thing mentioned about Er is that he was wicked. I can’t help but wonder what will be spoken about my life. What legacy will I leave?

Also the sons of Hezron who were born to him were Jerahmeel, Ram, and Chelubai. Ram begot Amminadab, and Amminadab begot Nahshon, leader of the children of Judah; Nahshon begot Salma, and Salma begot Boaz; Boaz begot Obed, and Obed begot Jesse; Jesse begot Eliab his firstborn, Abinadab the second, Shimea the third, Nethanel the fourth, Raddai the fifth, Ozem the sixth, and David the seventh. Now the sisters were Zeriuah and Abigail. And the sons of Zeruiah were Abishai, Joab, and Asahel-three. Abagail bore Amasa; and the father of Amasa was Jether the Ishmaelite.” 1 Chronicles 2:9-17 NIV

Some of these names are very familiar to me…David, Boaz, Abigail. Others I find myself skimming over, but wanting to find out more about their life. I am reminded that names are important. And that because of Jesus, I have a new name. I recently read a book that asked, “Do you know the meaning of your name?” (When Women Walk by Faith-Lysa TerKeurst). I’ve always known that my name means Beloved, but this time it took on a whole new meaning for me. It went from my head to my heart. It was a tangible reminder of God’s love for me. There was no doubt in my mind that God was speaking to me through this book and the words of this song…

“I’ve heard the accusation. And I’ve heard the propaganda. I’ve heard the lies they whispered to my soul. That I have been forsaken. And I’ll always be forgotten. No matter what I do it’s not enough. I am Your Beloved, You have bought me with Your blood. On Your hand You have written out my name. I am Your Beloved, the one the Father loves, Your mercy has defeated all my shame. The One who knows me best, is the one who loves me most. There is nothing I have done that could change the Father’s love…” (I am Your Beloved, Jonathon & Melissa Houser-Bethel Music)

Dear Father, thank you that you call me by my new name…Loved, Chosen, Redeemed. That I am found by You and loved by You. My name is written on the palm of your hand (Isaiah 49:16). My purpose and identity are in you. Amen.

Amy(amyctanner)

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Numbers 26-29 & Luke 2

When the movie Hoosiers first came out our family went to view it. It is a great movie and I’ve seen it now a number of times. When a movie is finished our tradition is to just sit there for a bit and let it sink in and let the movie theater clear out. After this film was over — and I’ll never forget this — there was a group of six to eight young people sitting probably ten rows a head of us and to the right (we usually sit on the left hand side in a theather). As the movie credits were scrolling and we were down to the second key grip and the guy who holds the cord for the mic guy and the names are so small it’s hard to read, that group of young people broke out into cheers and applause. There was obviously a friend of theirs or a family member that was that second key grip guy and they went wild with cheers.

I thought of that when I read Numbers 26. There are lots of names in that chapter. Most people we only read there once, but they are there. Names are important. Your name is important. Just read a couple of verses from that chapter:

5 The descendants of Reuben, the firstborn son of Israel, were: through Hanok, the Hanokite clan; through Pallu, the Palluite clan; 6 through Hezron, the Hezronite clan; through Karmi, the Karmite clan. 7 These were the clans of Reuben; those numbered were 43,730.

Plus these people are mentioned by clans, by families. And God works through families. He works through your family. He worked through the generations of David that brought us a Savior. We see that in the first verses of Luke 2:

1In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.

The house of David brought us salvation, no matter how good or bad all those people were in that lineage. What about your family? You may be laughing now. You can’t see your family making a difference in God’s Kingdom. Yet, there is always hope and opportunity. I’m praying for your family this morning. That all of you will be a strong part of God’s Kingdom work. Remember your name is important and your family’s name is too. Let’s see what God will do through us all!

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1 Samuel 25; 1 Corinthians 6; Ezekiel 4; Psalm 40, 41

A certain man in Maon, who had property there at Carmel, was very wealthy. He had a thousand goats and three thousand sheep, which he was shearing in Carmel. His name was Nabal and his wife’s name was Abigail. She was an intelligent and beautiful woman, but her husband was surly and mean in his dealings—he was a Calebite.

 23 When Abigail saw David, she quickly got off her donkey and bowed down before David with her face to the ground. 24 She fell at his feet and said: “Pardon your servant, my lord, and let me speak to you; hear what your servant has to say. 25 Please pay no attention, my lord, to that wicked man Nabal. He is just like his name—his name means Fool, and folly goes with him. And as for me, your servant, I did not see the men my lord sent. 26 And now, my lord, as surely as the Lord your God lives and as you live, since the Lord has kept you from bloodshed and from avenging yourself with your own hands, may your enemies and all who are intent on harming my lord be like Nabal. 27 And let this gift, which your servant has brought to my lord, be given to the men who follow you.

We are told in 1 Samuel 25:25 that the name Nabal means fool. What caused him to have that name?  I remember agonizing over choosing the names of my children before they were born—after all, they were going to have it the rest of their life.  My granddaughter had a heart defect the doctors found when she was still in utero.  They knew she would need surgery as soon as she was born so my daughter specifically chose a name that meant “strength” as she knew her daughter would need it to survive. In my mind, she was defining the kind of life she wanted for her daughter.  Did Nabal’s family give that name to him when he was born or was it changed later in life?  Since he was “surly and mean”, did he come from a family that expected him to be that way?

A name like “fool” can certainly shape your life. It seems to me you either accept it and live up to what people expect you to be, or you do the opposite and spend your life trying to prove that you are not what your name implies.  By his own wife’s words, we are told he lived up to his name.

On the other hand, the name Abigail means “father’s joy” or “joy of the father”. I can picture Abigail being twirled around in her father’s arms as a child dearly loved.  “She was an intelligent and beautiful woman” yet somehow she ended up being married to Nabal.  Perhaps her family was poor or had fallen into hard times and her father thought he was doing what was best for his daughter by offering her in marriage to a wealthy man.

28 “Please forgive your servant’s presumption. The Lord your God will certainly make a lasting dynasty for my lord, because you fight the Lord’s battles, and no wrongdoing will be found in you as long as you live. 29 Even though someone is pursuing you to take your life, the life of my lord will be bound securely in the bundle of the living by the Lord your God, but the lives of your enemies he will hurl away as from the pocket of a sling. 30 When the Lord has fulfilled for my lord every good thing he promised concerning him and has appointed him ruler over Israel, 31 my lord will not have on his conscience the staggering burden of needless bloodshed or of having avenged himself. And when the Lord your God has brought my lord success, remember your servant.”

Abigail knew exactly who David was, that he was running away from Saul, and that he was destined to be ruler over Israel while her husband had no clue. She really was intelligent. Nabal was vain, ungrateful, and couldn’t be bothered when approached by David’s men.  Yet Abigail knew exactly how to act.  She was well prepared to feed David’s army (who has 200 loaves of bread lying around?) as she directed her household to pull all the food together so quickly.  Then, she wisely humbled herself before him.  I think this took David by surprise!  He had his mind set on destroying Nabal and his household—he was not expecting such graciousness!  God saved David from his own “folly” that day by Abigail’s quick actions.

In a way, the story reminds me of the plot of a romance novel. Saul is chasing our hero, David.  While David is hiding out, he provides protection to a local ranch owner, Nabal, as he sheers his sheep.  When his army runs out of food, David sends his men to politely ask for some provisions from this wealthy ranch owner.  The surly, mean husband sends them away—after all, he never asked for David’s help.  In an emotional reaction to his refusal for aide, David decides he is going to kill the males of the household.  The servants come back to report everything to the intelligent and beautiful wife, our heroine in the story.  She quickly assesses the situation and saves her household from destruction—and David from doing something he might later regret.  He recognizes her true value. They have a moment but each goes their own way. Upon finding out the entire story, the husband has a stroke, and then dies.  Hearing of Nabal’s death, David, who was so impressed by Abigail, offers to marry her.  Then she lives happily ever after as the second wife to the King of Israel.

I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry.He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.

I know those verses fill me with gratitude as I think of God’s faithfulness in my own life. I know David wrote them.  I wonder if he ever read them to Abigail and she could see God’s hand working in her own life.  Maybe she realized she was her heavenly “Father’s joy” after all!

Lord, I know names are important to you. I thank you for the greatest name of all, Jesus.  He alone is our salvation as his names says.   My name means bringer of peace.  True peace only comes from knowing Jesus.  I pray for the opportunity to bring that peace to others.  In Jesus precious name.  Amen

Cindy (gardnlady)

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Filed under 1 Samuel, 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan

Deut. 26, Ps. 117, 118, Isa. 53, Matt. 1

What’s in a name?

I remember just before my two daughters were born, the arduous process of selecting just the right name for our unseen treasures. First, a list of names was created and thought was given to which sounded right. But, I recall one night having a dream… perhaps I was overthinking the name selection process. In the dream, I was asked what the baby’s name was, I couldn’t speak… and I remember having a handful of index cards intended to hold the names being considered, and when I offered the cards as possible options, each card was blank. It was then that I realized that this name selection process had a much deeper meaning… that perhaps we needed to consider something more than how the name sounded. After researching a number of names for their meaning, it became clear that there was a definite connection between the name given to a child and the destiny of that child. God’s Word speaks of the tremendous power of the tongue. As such, the choice of names for our children has the power to impact their journey in life more than we can imagine!

Names were especially important to the Israelites. Often times throughout the Bible, babies were named to symbolize events surrounding their birth or for prophetic reasons affecting a circle of influence wider than one family, even as great as an entire nation. While reviewing the passages for today’s posting, I found it interesting that Matthew began his Gospel with a long list of names leading up to Jesus’ birth. Going through the genealogy had me wanting to get past the long, unpronounceable names in order to get to what I thought was the real reason of Matthew 1. I learned that genealogy should not be scanned too casually as, in this case, it led to the crescendo in the announcement of our Savior’s birth and naming.

The genealogy in Matthew 1 reveals a very unique and important slice of history… many generations who waited for their Messiah to come. Finally, in one unassuming night in Bethlehem, our Savior was born. Of all the names God could have chosen, He selected one with exceptional meaning for His precious Son… Immanuel… God is with us! (Matthew 1:23) With the simple act of naming His Son, God sent a message to His people that he would be with them forever. Immanuel wasn’t just a name, but a promise, a hope, a fulfillment of prophecy, and the beginning of a legacy… the turning point of eternity.

Even in the midst of terrible tragedy revealed in Isaiah 53, the name of Jesus evoked great hope over death. The spikes that pierced His wrist left holes that He filled with the souls of those who accept His salvation. And in a beautiful twist of irony, those holes made it possible for Him to fill up our emptiness with His wholeness. We are all living in Immanuel’s legacy… today, many generations after Jesus received His name, God is still with us. Even the psalmist attests to this and praises God, calling upon us to give thanks to God for the grace and blessings bestowed on all of us… that there is a Redeemer that is with us always (Ps. 117, 118)!

So… what’s in a name? When it comes to Jesus’ name… everything!

Sweet Jesus… with the simple speaking of your name… thank you for being the hope of the world. May my life point others to its meaning for them… Amen!

P.S. What’s in a name in my world? My daughter Brianna’s name means strong… a name characterized with a deep inner desire to inspire others in a higher cause. If any of you know my daughter, you know how true this is of her… incredibly strong willed; recently graduated and certified as a teacher, wanting to devote her life to teaching and inspiring elementary age children… what better calling than to positively influence the mind of a child. Julia, has a name characterized as youthful with a desire for order and physical creativity. Not sure I agree with the order characteristic, but her creative outlook on life helps to balance an otherwise overly analytical family!

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