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God's Boundaries for Abundant Living - Never Abuse My Name, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
July 24, 2019 6:00 am

God's Boundaries for Abundant Living - Never Abuse My Name, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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July 24, 2019 6:00 am

Who is the most precious and important person in your life? A child, a spouse, parent - have you got it? Now, imagine someone dragging the name of that person through the mud - untrue statements, unfair criticism, crude, off-color jokes. How would that make you feel? Ever wonder how God must feel when we misuse His name? In this message, Chip takes a candid look at why taking the Lord’s name in vain is such serious business with God.

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Let me ask you question who is the most precious person in your life. Now imagine that person being the butt of jokes, crude comments, and they're saying right in your presence and putting it in your face.

How would it make you.

How would you respond today will take a candid look at why taking the Lord's name in vain.

Such serious business to God.

You're not one of us. Welcome to this Wednesday.

Addition of Living on the Edge with Living on the Edges of international discipleship in the street. The Bible teaching of nature continues a series God's boundaries for living a fresh look at the 10 Commandments. So what does it mean to take the Lord's name in chip explains what's behind that phrase. Why honoring God's name is such a big deal.

Let's join himself for his message from Exodus chapter 20 never abuse my name what I want to do is only give you a picture of something that was commonplace, a Levite was a man between the ages of 20 and 50. He had to be out of the line of Aaron the priesthood and that was this section of the Levites that I did the important ministry or priestly work in one of the jobs of some.

The Levites was to transcribe the text of the Torah and I want you to picture as you can imagine a man somewhere between 20 and 50 at 50 automatic retirement and his job was to take the written text of the Torah and rewrite on another scroll exactly what was on the scroll that was given him, and the accuracy had to be this level of integrity is once he was done with this day's work in older Levite would come with a pen and count over so many letters maybe 25 letters countdown 17 letters and he would put his pen on the letter and if the letter in this scroll did not match the letter of that scroll.

They would tear it up and start over the air. The integrity and the margin for error was zero tolerance but something else also happen as a Levite would be in if you can imagine in your mind's eye.

The meticulous copying of the text in a Genesis, Exodus, Deuteronomy numbers, and then he would get to. Let's pretend he's actually doing Exodus chapter 20 and when he got to the ward word. Yahweh, in fact, he would never pronounce it was too holy to pronounce, the valves were not written in just those four letters YWHW NR and when he got to that he would stop and he would go into another room and he would remove his outer garment he would ceremonially wash he would put on a clean outer garment he would come back in and then he would very carefully right those four letters. Why W. H. W. In Hebrew, and then he would take the utensil that he wrote the holy name, which is too holy to pronounce and he would destroy it. He would go into another room. Take the robe off the outer robe when he wrote that name, set it aside ceremonially cleanse himself again put on a new row and then come back and begin to rewrite the text again and you know what he did the next time he came to the word Yahweh or Jehovah exactly the same thing. The name of God was holy and what I want to talk about is how different that is their mindset and the reasoning then versus today, by contrast, let's just imagine that you walked into a business office insurance agent see someone doing a few sales calls.

I just any any normal business office and it's a Tuesday and things are kinda busy and it's one of those open-ended places where there's a lot of desk a lot of people on the phone and it's easy to overhear and is a real dynamic guy in the corners made a call and is having a real problem because the production people are getting things out and he says something like, what is a problem. They were the last week Jesus Christ say get it out. What's the problem here, my God. Can anybody do anything right there. Would it be pretty common in Arctic ethics, or let's take it from there and there's four guys on the couch and they're not doing a commercial not necessarily even drinking Bud Light, but there watching a big ballgame as the final four and is in the final fortis in the last game of the guy breaks away and the scores tie. He goes up he can leap out of this world is a little tiny gardener actually saw this happen. The guy spreads his legs jumps over him and slams it down and my couch goes I want and what a slam. Can you believe that for Jesus. I think I can fly. Is that normal C. The way the ancient Hebrews viewed the name of God and how it was used in the way the average American. The way the average person on this earth. And in fact the way the average even born again believer views God's name what it means is night and day. In this third command is a is a bit radical. The two scenes are painted or a study in contrasts. The ones extreme reverence.

Going well beyond anything God commanded. There's no commands about never ever speaking his name that I have in Scripture and the other extreme of irreverence, demonstrating total disregard for the name of God, and the questions I want to ask and answer as we look at those two extremes is why I would treat God's name was such holiness.

What does it mean to take the Lord's name in vain. What's behind this command. I mean, I grew up in the church to me when I first read this and did the research is part of me said you know what's the big deal me.

I mean, is it running is a really you calling this or say that word or that wording is the really is a really that much behind it.

What's the diff. What difference does it really make an candidly why is God so adamant about this as we started this you gonna find that this isn't one of those nonnegotiable's is will fudge you know you know God is no Chris is black and white coming were on the 10 Commandments and this is in the top three. The command is, you shall not misuse of the word for misuse is literally take up in vain. The name of the Lord your God, that word misuse literally means to carry or to bear or to lift up its use elsewhere in Scripture. Someone would lift up a song or lift up a poem means to verbalize one's allegiance. It's it's the taking of a name the verbalizing of a name is lifting or carrying something on your lips and then the word here for vain means with no purpose void emptier with evil intent. So understanding the what is really not very difficult. Don't bring to your lips take upon your lips.

The name of God in such a way where it has no purpose, no intent never deal with any evil intent, but it always has to have meaning you have to be thinking about who you're talking about or learn why just a minute. That's the command. The consequences are for the Lord will not leave him unpunished or hold him guiltless who misuses or takes his name in vain.

And as we look at this and let's let's dig in little bit and see if we can't figure out what's in a name I mean what what why is this command so heavy name is synonymous with one's character, reputation and authority. Here we we don't tend to think of it that way. But in Scripture scriptural times, ancient times, names were very, very important Abram. When God did a great work. Changes names what Abraham, Sarah, like you know God was doing something her life. Her name changed Sarah. We had Saul who was the murderer. His name was changed to Paul, you have multiple times in Scripture. When God is going to talk about what was going to occur in a person's life and Peter right used to be Simon, and upon this rock names are very very important because names are synonymous with one's character, reputation and authority names are synonymous with the person's character a person's reputation and authority. In essence, God's name reveals his essence who he really is when the name Yahweh infects often what they would do instead of using Yahweh they would they would take another name for God pattern. I'm so they wouldn't have to give his covenant name, but when the word Yahweh came to the lips. There's content his character. He's, it's his covenant name when Jehovah, the word Yahweh.

This isn't God always keeps his promises. When he's making a promise to his people. It's always, I the Lord in your Bibles LORD say this so it's very important is not only a covenant keeping promise keeper but it's his redemptive name when when he says the Lord delivered you out of Egypt, the Lord delivered you from the Philistines, the Lord delivered you the content of his name Yahweh has to do with not only his covenant name, but his redemptive name is the lover of his people as their Savior, and the third it's is personally when he when he met member Moses burning bush. I am that I am it's it's his personal name. It's just not a and a and an idea about what he's done, but it is personal identity. I am the ever existing eternal one and so when the name Yahweh or Jehovah or in our day Lord our God is used God's character, reputation and authority. The very essence of who you can, so to invoke the name of God is the call upon to your remembrance is personhood is his deeds, his promises and his very presence.

So how important is his name. When Jesus was asked by his disciples. You know, we notice the John you know he prays with his disciples and the Pharisees boy that you got a pretty rigorous way that they pray and we notice you are very habitual about getting up early in the morning and getting away and there's an intimacy that you have with God that we've never seen before. Will you teach us to pray in Jesus in Matthew six taught of the price and the first thing he said what that there's a different kind of relationship when he taught them. Our father was in heaven. The concept of father was radical that the Hebrews of the day had a very strong sense of God's transcendence and other his awesomeness but not the idea that he could be eminently could be close and use the word about it was it was the word that small cobbler children call upon their mom or dad to climb up into the lap but then noticed right after he said our father who art in heaven, what's the very first thing he taught them Hollywood.

The by name holy is your name and so he saying here that his covenant name.

In essence, is were to take God right in the word seriously were to take God very very seriously and that applies not only to God but to Jesus. Jesus identity and his name was discussed. Member. What shall he be called his name will be called Emmanuel. Well, God is with us.

The word Jesus means what Savior or salvation.

Jesus made it clear member in John chapter 8, before Abraham was member I am and he made clear is the Eggo a me he was he was taking. He said I want you to know that your view of the eternal God, the I am that I am when you see me using the father member in the garden when they came in they had swords and clubs and torches and I said are you looking for and uses that same phrase, and when he says that phrase remember what happened the power of the name.

The people fell down to the floor. The I am. He I am the I am so there's real power in the name of God is to be taken very seriously and here's the axiom.

Our use of God's name in word and thought or deed will reflect our view of God in a relationship, how you think about God's name. How you use God's name in word or thought or deed will reflect the view in the relationship you have with what happens is when we don't have a high view of God, it becomes visible and apparent in how we talk.

I was have had this experience multiple times with my kids and then I can't equip because it just got too painful, but I remember one apparent time where you know I was real tired and came through big time and so I really wanted to treat our family, so I heard from all my friends are at least the number of people that this was a good movie. Okay going to go see this good movie.

And so you know it was the days were we couldn't in a put two quarters against each other. So to buy movie tickets and popcorn the whole deal.

We all lined up and sat down and it started out was kind of a family-friendly movie and seem to have a good plot seem like kind of a nice time but I don't know what was the early on in this movie. Someone started with the GD expression GD this GD that GD this GD that and it was it was kids and family oriented was like this feels like a family movie.

The music is like a family movie has come in the Disney feel that boy early on, there's this blank blank. This blank blank. This, and I sat there and I thought were my ghetto, whether through this and how much of this am I going to take and I just had this thought come to me.

I thought his most precious person in my life is the person whose respect that I would guard his reputation. I would garden. I thought you know it's my wife or one of my kids and I thought when I sit in this movie theater.

If they were saying Teresa damn this Teresa damn this Tresa hi: trees of the dam and send people to hell in just and then using her were not even just like a slur or a fill in that I would get up front at the site up to what the next guys is my wife's name like that, you know, I may lose this battle but I will try to take out when human if someone said that about when your kids about your mom and I thought to myself that I'm not doing this and so my kids this it happened before and I gave them the okay we all filed out burn about seven bucks a person and I'm going and course. It was a teachable moment and anyone help me see it to help me see that our view of God's name and our sense of what it means and how important it is, says a lot about where were at with and I think what's happened in our culture candidly is we gotten very casual in the name of God doesn't mean much to the world and unfortunately the name of God in many ways doesn't mean too much to the church and I think were not going into words matter words really matter. There's no way ideas are expressed through words so words have content and when the content of the word is devalued and overtime gets degraded so that it doesn't mean anything. Then the concept in your mind, and the idea in your mind is you will have a low view of God. If we get to the point where we talk about him privately and casually or are you ready if you use his name in vain. And so I want to talk about is in what ways do we use God's name in vain and I like you to learn that profanity. Of course, is one, but probably the most serious and in the in the cultural context, this third command was not given primarily with regard to profanity, although it's definitely included. The primary application of this is in the taking of oaths and you notice and you know this is in the taking of those that we do not keep right. The word perjury is a legal term perjury and historical context. You can jot down under that Deuteronomy 613 and Deuteronomy 1020 and both those say fear the Lord your God, and take an oath in my name again. You remember, they've come out of this pagan culture. No one told the truth. There was no sense of right and wrong.

This is good this is bad, and so you know it is as God is teaching these people how to live before him. One of the things he wants them to learn is to tell the truth and so if you're in a business deal and you say you're gonna do that and he's gonna do that will then what you say in the name of the Lord because I mean it is so holy, you would never break your mouth and by the time centuries Rolon by the time, years and years.

What happened people would then not use the name of the Lord.

And oh, they would say. I swear by Jerusalem or I swear by this I swear by that they were looking for legal loopholes. They took the very command of God, and tried to use it as a way so that when they didn't tell the truth. Is it what we ought. I didn't swear by the name Lord.

So much so that by Matthew chapter 5 about verse 46 member when Jesus was talking about. You've heard it said, you know swear by heaven or swear by earth but I say to you, let your yes be yes. You know me know. Basically Jesus and let's forget all this other stuff. The whole point of taking the oath in the name of God was to bring about integrity. You actually taken the command to build integrity into the life of Israel and used it for legal loopholes. I don't tell the truth so he said you know what I want you to do just tell the truth all the time for ghettos. But when you would say to a person I in the name of God commit to marry that woman. That man I in the name of God will pay so much for that field I in the name of God have a treaty with this group of people that were at war with it is unbreakable on the basis of the name and the integrity of the creator and the deliver in the Redeemer of all the people of Israel. I will never break this oath. So the issue was being a person of your word and when you would take the name of the Lord and then not keep your promise you were misusing or taking the name of God in vain. Notice Leviticus 1912 do not make a promise in my name. If you do not intend to keep that brings disgrace on my name.

I am in the new Pierce's name, the Lord, or Yahweh your God. This one. How many times have you been to a wedding. I've done a lot of them. As a pastor. 20+ years and isn't there a place in the wedding where we say to this couple before God and these witnesses do you take this man to be your lawfully wedded wife I do I do you take this woman veer off to what Wi-Fi do I do in sickness and in health, and sorrow and right as long as you both shall live before God oath and these witnesses you understand when a couple now do understand our biblical grounds for divorce.

And there's infidelity and people run off. Yes.

Do I understand that some people are married to unbelievers and for strength and seven. An unbeliever can abandon the believer and people may find themselves divorce will now that we have 10% of all the divorces in the evangelical community covered. What about the other 90%. I'm not fulfilled. This is really hard. I'm not very happy right now.

When we as Christians break our vowel or are oaths to God.

We are taking the name of the Lord in vain and would you mind going back if you don't have it open and look at the very first page where it says were not to take the name of the Lord in vain and did you notice the consequences. There for the Lord will not leave him unpunished or hold him guiltless who misuses or takes his name in vain.

Any of you businessmen businesswomen here ever had a business deal with another Christian, you know that little fish on the corridor when you got the car there's little goldfish on the back of the card and if you had the first round of things were there Christian and you're Christian, and such are both Christians and were probably don't even need to sign anything because your word is gold you both love God, your people of integrity. I would just be interested. How many people had one of those experiences with one of those so-called Christians.

Maybe they were they work and you got ripped off. I did what they did. They took the name the Lord in vain that broke the promise was on the basis of your relationship with. In my case I had time to write and sign a contract. My lands this this guy loves God I love God.

If I can't trust his word. What can I trust and what I learned is I can trust his work. You break an oath, you might jot down some 15 for some 15 force talking about the kind of man the kind of woman that God promises to bless and Psalm 15 opens with a question and ends with the promise and opens with the question says, oh God, oh Lord, who may abide in my holy tent who may dwell with you that would suit you have intermittent wonderful relationship with you and then he goes through a list of things he walks integrity and speaks truth in his heart. You know, doesn't take a bribe, and by verse four. One of the evidences of a man or woman. The Intimacy with God becomes wellness holy tent. He swears to his own hurt and does not change the fact the matter is there's times you make a promise based on a certain set of circumstances, and in the circumstances change right and you know what a man of God or man or woman of God does you swear to your own hurt. I said I would do this. I said I would come and then circumstances change and then a man of integrity comes for you right back.

If you're just joining us, you're listening to Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram chips message never abuse my name is from his series God's boundaries for abundant living. Strip explained today other than a harsh list of prohibitions. The commandments are actually life-giving instructions from a heavenly father who loves his children. God's boundaries for abundant living provides a high view of God that will give you a new appreciation of your relationship with creating a solid foundation for every aspect of your life. If that's something you'd like to learn more about. We want to help for limited time, the CDs for God's boundaries are discounted and the MP3s are absolutely free.

You'll find God's boundaries resources on our website LivingontheEdge.org or if you prefer to talk with one of our customer care representatives give us a call at 1-888-333-6003 what's up. I think it's safe to say that this idea of taking the Lord's name in vain is one most of us have completely misunderstood what can we do to get our understanding and our behavior more closely aligned on this one well I think this one is one of those that we just we got stuck. I mean, we really got stuck.

We think taking the Lord's name in vain is cussing, or an especially using a very specific phrase when we consummate all my gosh I took the Lord's name in vain. Well, in fact, that is certainly true, but that is the tip of the iceberg taking the Lord's name in vain. As we learned is is a life that says one thing and words that say one thing and they're totally opposed to one another and so what we need to do is help people live in integrated life. How is it that how you work and how you live and what you do and you say I'm a Christ follower puts all those things in alignment and after being a Christian for literally about 30 years, I wrote a book called the good to great in God's eyes, and I actually love the teaching series because it has a lot of passion and pop to it and it talks about you reading great books and pursuing great people and praying, great prayers and dreaming great dreams and it has all these practical things that when people are not taking the Lord's name in vain when they're really living the life I will tell you, these are 10 practices. The great Christians have in common and so good to great in God's eyes. We want people to not take the Lord's name in vain and experience his grace and his joy and the fruit of the spirit in their lives will a serious trip just mentioned is called good to great in God's eyes, and all of the series resources are available on our website LivingontheEdge.org that's the CDs, MP3s, the book and the small group with study guide in good to great in God's eyes. Strictures lots of stories and practical how-to's that will help your words and your everyday life, become better aligned with God's desire is for you, go to LivingontheEdge.org for complete details on ship series. Good to great in God's eyes. If you prefer. Just give us a call at 1-888-333-6003. Now here. Strip to wrap up today's program.

Let me ask you question.

As you heard today's message. What came to your mind I know is a person growing up and hearing the 10 Commandments.

If I heard this commandment, I would just think, well, you know, don't swear you know don't use you know this word or that word with God's name in it that that's not really at the heart of it. Of course it's included with the real heart of it is do you keep your word. Do you tell the truth and is that concept of perjury. Literally anyone ask you something because you know it's easy to think about you and I don't think I do that. Have you ever been given a business card by someone with a little fish on it and got involved in promises or a business deal with them selling you something only to find out you get really ripped off and you know you get ripped off at the fallen world. But then just I mean have it eat down inside of you, like they use the name of God to hook me into or you know they have come to a Christian meeting and used all the God language and said oh, could you come over. We just want to talk with you have your dinner have some fellowship and then about three quarters through the dinner they have this wonderful business opportunity for you and you have this little knife that goes. So that's what this is about. You see, that's what the Scriptures talking about when that happens, were not men and women, integrity, and we defamed not only our reputation but worse the Lords and that's why Living on the Edge, our focus, our passion is to produce Romans 12 Christians Romans 12. Christian is someone who said you know something I'm tempted of course to use my relationship in the body of Christ for legitimate things that we really believe in but I refuse to do that God will open the door he'll meet my needs. I'm tempted as a member the body of Christ when I make a commitment and I realized all that was dumb.

Why did I do that I should've prayed about it, that's so stupid and what we say is you know what God is in control. I'm going to keep my word even though I'm at the pay a price. I don't want to go. It cost me time it cost me money, but it won't cost God's reputation, and it won't cost mine. That's what were talking about that kind of believer is the kind of believer that gets empowered and used in supernatural ways and God will test you in the way you learn to keep your word is not keeping your word and paying the price. Believe me, I've got a lot I can give you a list of times that I've done that. So can I encourage you be a man or woman of your word and get involved in a progressive journey that join us in if you're an occasional listener and you say you know I want to do that but I keep struggling joined the living on edge community. I mean it's no substitute for your church but it's a group of people who say today what on a regular basis. I need a process to follow it if you guys will help me. I want to grow to be a committed Romans 12 Christian good website LivingontheEdge.org when I can ask you for any money were not gonna send you stuff we want to know those who are part of the listening community how we can help you in the journey of becoming Romans 12 Christian as we wrap up today's broadcast just a quick but important God Living on the Edge depends on friends like you to provide the necessary funding to continue broadcasting right here in your area. We can't do that without your support. Would you prayerfully consider partnering with us on a monthly basis so people in your area can continue to benefit from the ministry of Chip and Living on the Edge to set up a recurring donation, call us at 1-888-333-6003, or if you prefer to give online you can donate securely@livingontheedge.org.

Thank you in advance for whatever God leads you to do well tomorrow Chip continues a series God's boundaries for abundant living should make plans to join us that for all of us here Dave releasing thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge


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