The Norman Transcript

Religion

March 14, 2014

Names are important

(Continued)

NORMAN —

While it may be cute, names at the end of the day really do matter.

Take the time to rediscover names right out of the Bible. Why? They are inspired, and therefore, have a Godly purpose. Here are a few to study and consider: church of God (1 Cor. 1:2), churches of Christ (Romans 16:16), the church of the living God (1 Tim. 3:15), church of the firstborn (Heb. 12:23), disciples (Acts 20:7), saints (1 Cor. 1:2), brethren (1 Cor. 15:58), Christians (Acts 11:26), reverend (Psalms 111:9), pastor (Eph. 4:11) and Father (Matt. 23:9).

We think that the ends justify the means but caution is in order. We can rob God of ownership. We have plagiarized on grand-scale simple meaningful inspired names and refit them to meet our own selfish ambitions. We need to do what the early reformers sought — to go back to the simplicity of the scriptures and reconnect with names that originate from God, not man.

Why? Because in spiritual matters names are important to God and should matter to us. I leave you to consider these words of Martin Luther: “I pray you to leave my name alone, and call not yourselves Lutherans but Christians. Who is Luther? My doctrine is not mine. I have not been crucified for anyone. St. Paul would not let any call themselves after Paul, not Peter, but of Christ. How then, does it befit me, a miserable bag of dust and ashes, to give my name to the children of God? Cease, my dear friends, to cling to these party names and distinctions: away with all; and let us call ourselves only Christians after him from whom our doctrine comes.” The Life of Luther, by Stork, p.289.

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