- first letter (introduction)
- second letter (first commandment - no other gods)
- third letter (second commandment - no idols)
And now for the fourth letter discussing the third commandment...
How are you? We continue to usher in the new season of spring here and each day there is evidence of new life - leaves are budding on the trees, birds are singing in the branches and flowers are beginning to bloom. Where we live it rains a lot, so things grow very well and everywhere you look you can see green. It also means we have a lot of mud from all the rain!
In my past letters I've been talking about the 10 Commandments that God gave to Moses for the Israelites in the book of Exodus. Because this list of commands deal with moral laws, they still apply to us today, and as followers of Christ, we need to adhere to these commands.
The third command says, "You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misused his name."
God's name is holy and we must use it in a respectful way. I don't know what it is like in your country and culture, but here in the USA it is very common for people to take the Lord's name in vain. I am so grateful my parents taught me to honor and respect God's name when I was a child. To me this means that I do not throw around the name of God casually. The Bible warns us many times that the tongue is powerful and what we say matters.
In Matthew Jesus himself teaches us how to pray and begins his prayer with ,"Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name." God is our Father - our creator - and He lives in heaven - his name is holy.
I want to encourage you to only speak the name of God with reverence, awe, love and respect. Consider who you are talking to and about when you speak the name of God. Also, think of how it would make you feel if your family and friends misused your name - making it a joke or mockery. God feels no less when His name is misspoken and misused.
If you do make a mistake and misuse the name of the Lord, repent and ask His forgiveness. He is a gracious God.