Listen to this Coffee Stain: https://soundcloud.com/david-porter-965485963/father
One of these days my children will rise to the exalted rank of grandparent– and I’m going to laugh.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s great to be a grandpa. But, don’t think about it too deeply.
It seems to me that people exchange their grandparents for their own kids. Then they have to turn in their parents to get their grandchildren.
If you follow that logic too far, it’s not encouraging, because eventually you come out on the bad end of the deal. You’re going to get exchanged for a squalling baby somewhere down the line.
When they become grandparents my children are going to get to hear for the first time the name that their kids give to their newborn. Ha, ha. No more Maudes and Mabels for the new generation. They’ve got names that shock you.
Then you get used to it and never think about it again. You even think the names are kind of cool (because the little guy or girl who wears that name is incredible beyond belief).
But names are kind of important, don’t you think? In other times (and even today in other cultures), people gave their children names because of personality, or to glorify God, or even to commemorate an event.
In the Bible one man’s appellation meant, “fool,” and he lived up to his name. Jacob means, “supplanter,” and he spent a good part of his life trying to take Esau’s place.
One baby was born and his mama called him, “Icabod” which means “the glory is gone.”
Back in those days you didn’t want to be born when your mama or your daddy was in a bad mood.
I should have given my kids a name which means, “they got filthy rich and gave tons of money to their father.” Does anyone know what that would be in Hebrew?
Revelation of God
Often Bible names have tremendous significance. God reveals Himself by different names and each one reveals an aspect of his personality.
Here are some of the names God use to reveal Himself in the Old Testament:
El Shaddai (Lord God Almighty)
El Elyon (The Most High God)
Adonai (Lord, Master)
Yahweh (Lord, Jehovah)
Jehovah Nissi (The Lord My Banner)
Jehovah-Raah (The Lord My Shepherd)
Jehovah Rapha (The Lord That Heals)
Jehovah Shammah (The Lord Is There)
Jehovah Tsidkenu (The Lord Our Righteousness)
Jehovah Mekoddishkem (The Lord Who Sanctifies You)
El Olam (The Everlasting God)
Jehovah Jireh (The Lord Will Provide)
Jehovah Shalom (The Lord Is Peace)
Jehovah Sabaoth (The Lord of Hosts)
All these names unveil an aspect of God’s personality and His relationship with us.
When God came to us to save us from our sins, He sent His Son Jesus, which means, “God saves.” He saved His people from their sins.
God gave Him the Name that is more important than all other names, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of
God the Father. (Phil. 2:9-11)
With all the revelation available as to the nature of God revealed in His Name, what did His Son Jesus call Him?
“So He said to them, “When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven …” (Lk. 11:2, NKJV).
In all the Old Testament, with all those wonderful revelations of the nature of God, He’s only referred to as “Father” 15 times.
In the four Gospels He’s referred to as “Father” 175 times! That was Jesus’ preferred name for Him.
But, it’s more than that. The word that Jesus would have used in Aramean was, “Abba” which means “dear father,” or “papa” or “daddy” I suppose. It’s the intimate name that a child called his father.
Some dispute this saying that we find instances in Greek where adults call their father, “Abba,” so it must simply mean “father.” I don’t know. I called my father, “Daddy,” when I was three years old and I called him, “Daddy” when I was 53 years old.
It was still a heart word. I didn’t call anyone else by that name.
The incredible thing is that when we come to God by faith in Jesus we are adopted into His family. We get to call Him by this familiar name: ‘Abba.’”
“This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him! (Rom. 8:15-17, The Message)
“And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” (NIV)
You can talk to Him exactly like a son or a daughter would speak to their father—a father who loves them more than anything else.
One Muslim lady did that and she had a wonderful revelation of the Lord Jesus. She said, “I dared to call Him, Father.”
You can, too. Stop a moment and think of what that means for your life. “Father! Papa! Abba!” Come into His presence. Speak to Him like you’d speak to the best papa that you could imagine.
Know He loves you and you can enter His presence with confidence. Run to your father.
I’d like to hear from you. Do you know why your parents gave you your name? Share the story with us.
“Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.” ~ Shannon L. Alder