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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

What does your name reflect? Words of Exhortation

Words of Exhortation

This message talks about the meaning and purpose of a name. I will however approach it from a female biblical figure. (No offence brothers.) I am sure you will receive your blessings as well if you receive with an open heart. This biblical figure was a woman whose qualities stand out among all the women mentioned in the Bible. Most Christian women of our generation like to identify themselves with this particular woman. She was a mother, a wife, a daughter, a patriot, a judge, a prophetess, a woman of wisdom and a warrior. And her name is Deborah.

Deborah means ‘Bee’. When we talk about Bee (s), honey comes to mind.

Honey is used for various purposes. For instance, it is used for cooking, for sandwich, for making body lotions, for medicine and much more. So, we can see that the name, Deborah, reflects its qualities; multifunctional that is, as I have mentioned above.

What does your name reflect?

Do you truly reflect yourself?

Does your name reflect who you are? These are questions we ought to ask ourselves. Many go about bearing names which they are not, possibly bearing curses in the name of names. God have mercy!

Our names can either reflect our character in a positive way or bring it out in a negative way, which in turn works against us. Many today, still give their children names that do not glorify God. Who would want to name his or her child Judas? When we hear the name Judas, what comes to mind is a traitor or a betrayer. Judas was one of Jesus’ disciples. He happened to be the one who betrayed Jesus for 30 silver shekels (See John 13:18; 26). This should teach us to know those we associate with however. Though, chosen by the Lord himself, he was a betrayer and a traitor. Could it be that God’s omniscient attribute ceased to function when He called Judas to follow Him? Not at all! (See John 18:1-4), God allowed Judas to be Judas. God will allow whichever name you bear until you see the unseen. As Judas later realized after he betrayed Jesus. (Judas Greek form of Judah means Praise). What is here to praise? Is it to fulfill scripture that the Messiah has to die, or by allowing Satan to use him? Either way, this remains a mystery.

I do not want to scare you but there are people who are rejected wherever they go for one reason or the other. Without any justifiable reason, they are just not acceptable or qualified to associate with the blessed ones. Let this article challenge you to search for the meaning of your name. I am, by no means, condemning your name or advocating conflict with your parents. It should be something you decide to do for your own benefit. I did research on my name years back; thank God its meaning is satisfactory.

We read in the Bible about individuals whose names God changed before he used them. Now! I would love you to test your Bible knowledge here; fill in the gap whose names come to mind that God changed their names, preferably, post your answer on comment link below………………………………………………. Of course, with exception of Jabez whose story followed next.

Jabez, 1 Chronicles 4:9-10 says, 9 “Now Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.” 10 And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, “Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!” So God granted him what he requested.

In ancient times, people named their children according to their circumstances. As seen in the case of Jabez, he quickly acknowledged what catastrophe awaited him if action was not taken. His name actually means pain. Coming to grips with this, he went to God so as to be a blessing instead of a curse, which, in this case, was pain.

Then again, why would one want to name a child based on a misfortune or tragedy? Could it be due to ignorance? What about people of today? Are they ignorant as well? Some people give their children Christian names while others give theirs, names which promote demonic influences. These are names such as Diana, Cynthia, Apollonian, Jacob etc. I assume that Deborah`s parents must have named her according to their circumstances too. Let’s see from the following text;

Judges 4: 4-9 Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was leading Israel at that time. 5 She held court under the Palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites came to her to have their disputes decided. 6 She sent for Barak son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali and said to him, "The LORD, the God of Israel, commands you: 'Go, take with you ten thousand men of Naphtali and Zebulun and lead the way to Mount Tabor. 7 I will lure Sisera, the commander of Jabin's army, with his chariots and his troops to the Kishon River and give him into your hands.' "

8 Barak said to her, "If you go with me, I will go; but if you don't go with me, I won't go." So she said, 9“I will surely go with you; nevertheless there will be no glory for you in the journey you are taking, for the LORD will sell Sesera into the hand of a woman”. Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh.

The passage, Judges 4:4-9 teaches Deborah’s qualifications. She was one of the females mentioned in the Bible as being endowed with a prophetic gift. Not only was she endowed with spiritual gifting, she did reflect her name by her actions and character. She was a judge during the time of judges, she was a wife, patriot, prophetess and a warrior. In fact, she was the first female rule/leader mentioned in the Bible. Her name really speaks for her, she was a blessing to her generation.

I know of Christian women who call themselves ‘the Deborah generation’. There are even organizations named after Deborah. The question that goes through my mind each time I hear that statement, is, do they have the Deborah qualification? Not until character or attitude is changed, tapping to attain God’s purposes for our lives will be hard. We can only make an impact with the right attitudinal approach.

To be empowered or to be used by God requires the right attitude; One that entails

A decision maker,

A person others would want to emulate,

A person of integrity,

A peace maker,

A fighter of a good cause,

A victor and a person of faith,

A seeker of righteousness.

I challenge you therefore, you that are reading this article, which bad character in you are you willing to let go, in order for God to use you effectively, and also to reflect who you truly are? God will use you when you are ready. God does not use people who are perfect; God perfects those He uses.

God only uses those who are ready and willing just like Deborah and Jabez. Jabez needed a change of name for a good cause. Your change of name today could be your environment, friends, wrong associates etc. Deborah worked faithfully, reflecting her name to God’s glory, you, too could work reflecting your name to God’s glory.

God has placed many of us today in a position to be blessings but instead of being blessings, some have done wickedness with what God has given them. (Rulers, for instance, see Proverbs 8:15-16)). They exercise power to suppress and oppress people and sometimes; we see this, even, in the house of God (See Ezekiel 34:1-4). God will bypass anything that will bring shame to His church, and that includes your character and behavior. I pray you live a life that will bring glory to God, in return, fulfilling your purpose in life.


The word which I have shared with you is not my word. It's God’s word. If you believe them, apply them to your situation and circumstances. Then watch God transform you into a jewel.

Out of ignorance many parents have given their children names which do not glorify God. This, however, can be changed. Thank God for Christianity. This has enlightened our understanding to spiritual matters better than it was, centuries ago. Whether you are a believer or not, please check the meaning of a name before giving it to your child.

God bless you!! Remember, God loves you with an everlasting love.

In His service Minister Rosemary Ariole


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