When you meet someone for the first time, the first thing you usually learn about them is their name. You might chat for a bit, walk away and then think, “what was their name?” My husband is a master at learning and remembering names. When we moved to Arizona years ago he had to manage 150 employees and he was determined to know their names before he started his first day on the job. He sat for hours with pictures and names and memorized them all. I remember him telling me how impressed the people were when he actually knew their name before he even met them. Now I on the other hand am really bad and don’t usually make an effort at knowing someones name. I should probably work on that.
Names are important. There is nothing more personal to you than your name. To execute a legal document, you have to sign your name. No matter what you fill out on a form, it is not final till you end with your signature. Your name is what identifies you. Proverbs 22:1 says, “A good name is more desirable than great riches”. People associate your name with your character.
Regrettably, 3000 years ago in the book of Amos, the people of Israel got so caught up in their prosperity that they lost their connection with the Lord and His name. Likewise, we today are not much different.
Over the years, Israel lost touch with the Lord. Each generation moved farther and farther away from who the Lord was. So Amos had to introduce them to the Lord them all over again. They had to start with His name.
He who made the Pleiades and Orion, and turns deep darkness into the morning and darkens the day into night, who calls for the waters of the sea and pours them out on the surface of the earth, the Lord is his name;
Amos wanted to do more than tell the Israelites about the name of the Lord. He wanted them to know that the Lord is at work and is actively involved in their lives. In the book of Amos, the Lord is active. 52 times in this book the Lord says, I WILL:
I will send
I will break down
I will destroy
I will not let
I will slaughter
I will turn
I will not
I will make
I will bring
I will give
I will test
I will no longer
I will not delay
I will never
I will kill
I will reach
I will search
I will command
I will never
I will give
I will restore
I will repair
I will rebuild
I will bring
I will firmly plant
People today might believe that God created the Heavens and the Earth, the stars of Pleiades and Orion, the day and the night, the rain and the seas, but they are not convinced that He is directly involved or active in their everyday lives.
If you look back over your life, can you see things that occurred, and say that was the Lord? In Amos 2 we see that God has the Israelites look back to see what He has done in their lives.
“Yet it was I who destroyed the Amorite before them, whose height was like the height of the cedars and who was as strong as the oaks; I destroyed his fruit above and his roots beneath. Also it was I who brought you up out of the land of Egypt and led you forty years in the wilderness, to possess the land of the Amorite. And I raised up some of your sons for prophets, and some of your young men for Nazirites. Is it not indeed so, O people of Israel?” declares the Lord.
We may not know it at the time, but isn’t it amazing to look back at your life and see the hand of God who directed your steps and decisions?
In today’s society many if not most people know about God. They have heard about Him and His power, but they don’t know His Name. Paul tells us in John 17:26 that we are to make His name known to others.
I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
His name is the Lord and He is active in our everyday life!