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Not a Trivial Matter
religiously inclined, many who believe in the Bible give little thought
to the issue of God’s name. But how does God feel about it? Is it such a
trivial matter to him?
Consider the fact that the Bible mentions
God’s personal name, Jehovah, thousands of times. In some Bibles the
divine name appears 7,210 times! Sadly some have removed it for titles.
It was God himself who inspired Bible writers to use his name so
prominently. One of these writers, the psalmist Asaph, wrote: "You,
whose name is Jehovah, you alone are the Most High over all the earth."
(Psalm 83:18) David also wrote in a psalm: "Concerning the name of
Jehovah our God we shall make mention."—Psalm 20:7.
shows that Jehovah God examines our heart to determine how we feel about
his name. The psalmist said: "If we have forgotten the name of our God,
. . . will not God himself search this out? For he is aware of the
secrets of the heart." (Psalm 44:20, 21) The prophet Isaiah wrote: "Give
thanks to Jehovah, you people! Call upon his name. Make known among the
peoples his dealings. Make mention that his name is put on
God himself said: "They will have to know
that my name is Jehovah." (Jeremiah 16:21) On another occasion he
declared: "I shall certainly sanctify my great name, which was being
profaned among the nations, . . . and the nations will have to know that
I am Jehovah." (Ezekiel 36:23) Some of these statements point to a time
when Jehovah will act with anger toward those who show disrespect for
his name. The issue of his personal name is no trivial matter to God.
God Is Not Far From You
How can you get to know God by name?
What does it mean to know God by name? The Bible answers: "Those knowing
your name will trust in you." (Psalm 9:10) Clearly, knowing God by name
involves more than just knowing what his name is. You must trust him.
That means getting to know the kind of God he is and learning about his
qualities and his thoughts. This will impel you to trust him.
conscientious reading and studying of the Bible can provide you with
insight into the kind of God that Jehovah is. He promises to protect
those who show affection for him and his name. Regarding one who does
so, God says: "Because on me he has set his affection, I shall also
provide him with escape. I shall protect him because he has come to know
my name. He will call upon me, and I shall answer him. I shall be with
him in distress. I shall rescue him and glorify him. With length of days
I shall satisfy him, and I shall cause him to see salvation by
What a wonderful relationship Jehovah God
has with those who know him by name! You too can enjoy such a
relationship. In your heartfelt prayers, never be hesitant about calling
upon him by name. He will answer because, as the Bible says, "he is not
far off from each one of us."—Acts 17:27.
God Knows You by Name
said to Moses: "I do know you by name." (Exodus 33:12) The well-known
account of the burning bush verifies this. The Bible says that God
"called to him out of the midst of the thornbush and said: ‘Moses!
Moses!’" (Exodus 3:4) This is just one example of the numerous occasions
when God addressed people by their personal name. Clearly, the Creator
of the universe is interested in us as individuals.
says that God knows each one of the many billions of stars by name.
(Isaiah 40:26) How much more so must he care about humans who worship
him! The apostle Paul wrote that "Jehovah knows those who belong to
him." (2 Timothy 2:19) This implies more than simply memorizing names.
God has intimate knowledge of his worshipers. We, in turn, should know
God by name and acquire intimate knowledge of his qualities.
last book of the Bible describes a figurative book in which God writes
the names of all who have worshiped him throughout history. This book is
called "the scroll of life" because Jehovah God will grant everlasting
life to those whose names are written in it. (Revelation 17:8) This is a
bright prospect for those who know God by name.
• Moses’ song just before Israel entered the Promised
Land: "I shall declare the name of Jehovah."—Deuteronomy 32:3.
David’s words to the giant Goliath: "I am coming to you with the name of
Jehovah of armies."—1 Samuel 17:45.
• Job’s words after the
total loss of his possessions and the sudden death of all his children:
"Let the name of Jehovah continue to be blessed."—Job 1:21.
apostle Peter quoting the Hebrew Scriptures in a speech: "Everyone who
calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved."—Acts 2:21.
prophet Isaiah: "Give thanks to Jehovah, you people! Call upon his name.
. . . Make mention that his name is put on high."—Isaiah 12:4.
Jesus Christ teaching his disciples to pray: "You must pray, then, this
way: ‘Our Father in the heavens, let your name be sanctified.’"—Matthew
• Jesus Christ praying to God: "I have made your name
• God speaking to his people: "I am
Jehovah. That is my name; and to no one else shall I give my own
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