Have you ever watched the public fall out when a celebrity says the name of Jesus or gives credit for their success to Jesus? You can say “God” but as soon as you say the name of “Jesus” people can lose their minds and they melt into an offended puddle and need a safe space to recover from such an offense. His name has been banned from almost every public platform because of the reaction from people.
FOR. THE. LOVE. OF. EVERYTHING. THAT. IS. HOLY!
This isn’t anything new, it has been happening since Jesus came to earth. I’m sure he offended people as soon as he could talk. Just his mere birth was offensive and threatening to King Herod and he was hunted with the hopes that he would be executed, even as an infant. Things only got worse when he began his public ministry. He turned everything upside down! The religious leaders HATED him because he challenged their motives, their rules and laws, their heart condition and the very “truth” that they stood on. He said things that infuriated them like, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me,” (Matthew 28:18) and “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6 ESV). These people lost their minds, tore their clothes and tried to stone him because of the things he said.
His sphere of influence grew and those that were associated with Jesus were also offensive to almost everyone they encountered because of their connection to him. FINALLY, those he offended thought they won when they crucified him, they thought the name of Jesus would only be told in stories but they were ignorant to WHO He is and the authority He has. That authority didn’t end when Jesus ascended to heaven, that authority was now given to every believer through the Holy Spirit. His disciples were left here to carry out the ministry of Jesus, so even when He wasn’t physically here his presence was and he continued to challenge and offend.
“What are we going to do with these men?” they asked. “Everyone living in Jerusalem knows they have performed a notable sign, and we cannot deny it. 17 But to stop this thing from spreading any further among the people, we must warn them to speak no longer to anyone in this name.”
18 Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! 20 As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.” (Acts 4:16-20)
You would have thought watching Jesus get beaten and crucified would have been enough to silence his disciples but they had a revelation that many miss. These leaders were offended that they were preaching in the name of Jesus. Why? In their eyes Jesus was dead, so why were they so concerned with the disciples using Jesus’ name when they proclaimed the good news?
They recognized that miracles, signs and wonders would happen when people called on the name of Jesus. Things that were unexplainable would manifest when the gospel was shared. People were running to Jesus in masses and the religious leaders couldn’t control it, they were losing their authority and power with every passing day. It’s sounds crazy, but this was all happening because of a name! My name doesn’t strike fear in people, it doesn’t offend people, miracles don’t happen when someone says my name, lives aren’t changed in my name, so why does all of this happen at the name is Jesus?
Why do people get offended?
When the name of Jesus is spoken a supreme authority is involved. That means every other “god” every other “power” every other “authority” is forced to submit to it. Philippians 2:9-11 says,
“Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.”
Whatever drives us that is not fueled by Jesus has to submit to His name, and our flesh does NOT like that. It means we are not the supreme authority in our lives, He is. It means not our will but His be done. It means His rules are superior to what we think is right. When His name is spoken everything has to submit to it. And people who don’t serve Him HATE that, but it doesn’t make it any less true.
Why do people feel threatened by that name?
Because, “salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). We would all love to live our lives without needing to answer to anyone but that isn’t the case. Even if you don’t believe in Him, one day you will stand face to face with Him and have to answer for your life. That makes us uncomfortable because we want to be able to live how we want to, when we want to, without needing to answer to anyone. But my Bible says something different and even when my mind doesn’t understand or even agree, I am still subject to His laws and that is threatening.
Why do people reject Him?
Because it’s too simple and at the same time too confusing. Just by calling on his NAME we will be saved? (Romans 10:13). It’s too simple! We have always been taught that you have to work HARD for what you want, so why wouldn’t we have to work for forgiveness or acceptance? How is that possible? Honestly, I am not sure all I know is that I am so thankful that it’s that simple because I don’t have enough time, talents or money to work my way into salvation. I don’t have enough time to pay back every sin I have committed. Sometimes our intellect and our enlightened thinking leads us to believe we have evolved from such ridiculous stories! Jesus came so it could be that simple. He died so we didn’t have to try and work and pay back a debt we would never be able to pay back.
People also reject him because of the people who do things in His name, that He would never do if He were walking here on earth. Like the crusades, I don’t believe He approved of that. Like the “Christians” who stand outside of abortion clinics screaming at girls that they are going to hell if they abort their babies. No, I don’t think Jesus would have done that, I think He would have looked them in the eye and loved them and HELPED them by showing them there was in fact another way. Unfortunately we haven’t been great examples to a world that is lost and dying. We have used hate, predacious, anger, confusion, misinterpretation to turn our backs on the very people Jesus would sit and have a meal with. We are the hands and feet of Jesus, so we need to have a relationship with Him, reading His word and surrendering to Him so when the world looks at us, they actually see Him.
We as believers are here on earth to be His hands and feet. When people see us coming in His name our hearts need to be surrendered to His will and His way. He will continue to make people uncomfortable because he confronts the things that doesn’t reflect himself. So, don’t be afraid to call on his name, create in his name, teach in his name, live by his name and to lead in his name. It’s HIS name that has the power and authority and it’s only through HIS name heaven will come to earth.
For the month of May I am dedicating my blog to moms! Do you have a funny story or lesson you have learned while being a mom? I would love to feature you on my blog! You can submit your story below.