Love Came Down: Called By Name
Today Becca writes on the importance of names: knowing you are called by God and recognising His character through the names we find in the Bible throughout the Christmas scriptures. Enjoy!
Names were very important in Ancient Jewish times. For example, Abraham means 'father of many'... which he was! Esau means 'hairy'... because he was! Jesus means 'he will save'.... because He does!
Both Jesus' birth and His name was prophesied far before His birth. In Isaiah 7:14 we can read, "a virgin will give birth to a son, and he will be called Immanuel". Then later on in Luke 1:30-31 it says:
“But the angel said to her, “You will give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus.”
Before He was born, He was assigned a name.
Everyone has a name. Some of us have a nickname too. My birth name is Rebecca, and it means to captivate. My nicknames are Becca, Becky, and "Becccawww", which my friends loudly and happily bird call to me!
A lot of people also have both positive and negative acquired names. For example, you may be called 'joyful', 'adventurous' or 'creative'. Negatively, you may be called 'fat', 'ugly' or 'stupid'. Maybe these labels are given by other people, or maybe we 'stick' these labels to ourselves.
I know what that's like. Throughout all my high school life I was either being called names by people in my class, or by myself. These labels stuck to me so much so that I couldn't quite see what God thought of me anymore.
This summer, I attended Soul Survivor. On the second night the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, was speaking about people who have labelled themselves, and the effects of this. This was a topic that was close to me, making me fidget, and frankly, want to leave.
My youth minister reached for my notebook I had been using throughout the week, opened to the most recent page and wrote "Precious. This is what God calls you". This wasn't something that my youth minister called me, but it was from God. Some may say coincidentally, I say 'Godincidentally', the Archbishop standing at the front began speaking about being precious to God.
My birth name is Rebecca, and I have many labels that, with God, I'm peeling off. But God has named me Precious - and He calls you by name too.
Christmas is a wonderful time when we can remember Jesus' character by his names: Immanuel (God with us); Prince of Peace, Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God.
Rebecca is a sixteen year old living in the Midlands. She goes to Bristol Bible College, has a youth placement with her church, and is studying A-Level Philosophy and English. She enjoys being creative and spending time with her friends.