…For His Name’s Sake

referencing The Lord is my Shepherd…

The first time I pondered this scripture, what I saw in this phrase, “for His name’s sake” was selfishness. But because I know that selfishness is inconsistent with the very nature of God and  I have  also experienced the selfless, “reckless” love of God, I decided to explore this phrase further and I came to understand it from another scripture:

Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me. Psalm 31:3 NIV

When I read this scripture, I understand the psalmist is saying, “God I call you my rock and my fortress and so because this is who you are and to be consistent with and protect the integrity of your name, lead and guide me”. That is what “for His name’s sake” means to me. Lets read that verse in context

He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Psalm 23: 3b ESV

From the previous lesson, we identified that Jesus is the WAY, the narrow path that leads to life everlasting (Matthew 7: 13-14), and the gate that we must enter if we are to be saved (John 10:9). We also know that Jesus is our RIGHTEOUSNESS… And this is His name by which He will be called, ‘The LORD our righteousness.’ (Jeremiah 23: 6 NASB)

His name is Our Righteousness (Jehovah Tsidkenu). His name is the Way. His name is Jesus (God our Salvation). He is our Shepherd and naturally, all shepherds lead and guide their sheep. In keeping with His name, He can only lead us on righteous paths. So when the psalmist says “for His name’s sake”, he is acknowledging who God is and the fact that God’s character cannot go contrary to His name. The psalmist is inadvertently saying, “God you are my Shepherd and as a shepherd, it is in your nature to lead. So because this is who you are, for the sake of your name [by virtue of your name, to preserve the integrity of your name], lead me in the path of righteousness.

Jesus has the most powerful name in heaven and on earth (Philippians 2: 9). There is healing in His Name. There is wholeness in His name. There is favor in His name. There is deliverance in His name. There is provision in His name. There is love in His name. There is peace in His name. There is joy in His name. Everything we need is in His name.

So dear reader, when next you pray or say this psalm dare to add “FOR YOUR NAME’S SAKE“. Ask God to hear your request from heaven simply because He is the God that hears (Delasi)…. For His Name’s Sake!

Studying the Word of God

If you are anything like me, then you feel the pressing need to dig deep into the word of God. God may be prodding you and nudging at your conscience, telling you you need to invest time in the study of His word. Then this is for you.

I love studying the word of God but initiating the process of taking my bible and reading is the greatest struggle I encounter on a daily basis. I can watch Netflix till the wee hours of the night but as soon as I pick up my bible, a wave of sleep washes over me and gently lulls me into this place of obtundation.

Recently, I heard a sermon by Pastor James MacDonald that has inspired this post. In his message, he outlined 3 things that will enable us deepen our commitment to God’s word:

Discipline

I will pursue your commands, for you expand my understanding. Psalm 119:32 NIV

We need to discipline ourselves to pursue the study of God’s word. This is not something God can do for us. I have learned that I need to make the commitment and initially it can be very difficult. To dare to go deeper with God, I need to move out of my comfort zone and take the leap and commit to reading my bible daily. This means I consciously set aside time in my day to do this. The truth is, reading the bible does not just happen and if you don’t carve time to do it, there will be 1000 other things that will occupy your time during the day. That is the process of self-discipline. The beauty of this process is that even though God cannot do it for you, He promises to help by His spirit:

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7 NIV

Desire

Eventually, studying the word will become a part of you and it will no longer be a tedious task but a desire, a longing and you will start to look forward to your time in the Word of God. Like the psalmist, this will be your confession:

Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long. Psalm 119:97 NIV

And believe you me, this happens to everyone who goes through the process of discipline. The Word starts to come alive everyday and it draws you in until your desire is for more. And finally the most amazing thing happens:

Delight

You start to delight in the word of God.

How I delight in your commands! How I love them! Psalm 119:47 NLT

Direct me in the path of Your commandments, for there I find delight. Psalm 119:35 Berean Study Bible

What an amazing feeling! and if you were seeking to go deeper with God, at this point you will be like a tree with deep seated roots that are nourished by God Himself.

Blessed is the man… whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither– whatever they do prospers. Psalm 1:1-3 NIV

Wow! I want that!

So I leave you my dear readers with this: Be intentional in studying the Word of God. The command to us today is to

Study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15 King James 2000 Bible