Honor | Part 4 | #3: Exalting His Name 28 Jan

The third commandment says, “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain…” What does it mean to take God’s name in vain? Is OMG okay to say? How do we honor this commandment and God’s name?  Join us as we answer these questions and more in our message, “Exalting His Name”. #GCHonor

Three Critical Questions:

  1. What is God’s Name?
  2. What does He mean by “misuse”?
  3. Why is punishment guaranteed?


Is God’s Name “God”?

Is God’s Name “Lord”?


“Adonai” = master; a ruler or lord; a title given to one in authority


LOML (short for Love Of My Life)


What is God’s personal Name?

  • Three points of context:
    1. The Israelites worshipped the deities of the Egyptians.
    2. Wait for it… (Yahweh destroyed the deities of the Egyptians.)
      • “Hayah” = to be, to exist, or to occur
      • God replied to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM,I WAS WHO I WAS,I WILL BE WHO I WILL BE” (Exodus 3:14)
      • “Say this to the people of Israel: I AM, I WAS, I WILL BEhas sent me to you.” (Exodus 3:14)
      • God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel: Yahweh…”
      • “Yahweh” = the Proper Name of the one, true God; the One who is, was, and will be
    3. Yahweh justifies the Ten Commandments by His Name

The Ten Plagues (2. Yahweh destroyed the deities of the Egyptians):

  1. The Nile turned to blood
  2. Frogs came up from the Nile
  3. The dust turned to gnats
  4. Swarms of biting flies
  5. Diseases in livestock
  6. Soot from a kiln caused festering boils
  7. Deadly storms and hail
  8. Locusts ravaged their crops
  9. Darkness
  10. The death of the firstborn

Who is the true God of the Nile? Who is the true God of light? Who is the true God of life and death?

“Shawve” = something empty or false; vanity; a worthless action

  • OMG!
  • GD!

“Nahsaw” = to carry, to bear, to take with you as you go; to lift up, exalt

To take God’sName in vain:

  • We know what vain means
  • We know what take means
  • Let’s look at some examples:
    • Mark 7:6-8
    • What makes me feel loved?
      • Physical touch
      • Sincere compliments
      • Sharing a hobby with my wife
    • I don’t care:
      • I’ll have dinner ready by 6:30
      • I’ll iron your shirts
      • I won’t pester you at work
    • “Let’s do stuff that makes us feel good and look important!”
      • Prophets and priests carried God’s Name as His representatives
      • Jeremiah 14:14-15


Three Critical Questions:

  1. What is God’s Name?
  2. What does He mean by “misuse”?
  3. Why is punishment guaranteed?
    • God’s Name is:
      • Holy (Leviticus 10:3, Isaiah 57:15, Revelation 15:4)
        Powerful (Exodus 9:16, Ezekiel 36:16-24, Luke 10:17)
        Imperative (Acts 4:12, Galatians 6:7, Philippians 2:9-11)


Carrying God’s Name in vain:

  • Perverts justice
  • Leads others to doubt God’s goodness
  • Leads others to curse God


What did we learn?

  • We are the Holy Spirit’s temple (1 Corinthians 6:19)
  • We are His priests (1 Peter 2:9)


We must carry God’s Name honorably.


Our lives show others:

  • God’s Name is holy (or profaned)
  • God’s Name is powerful (or minimized)
  • God’s Name is imperative (or ignored)


All people were created to carry God’s Nameby doing good works and living a life for His glory (Ephesians 2:10, 4:1)


So, what now? (Luke 6:46)

  • What sin are you guarding, excusing, or defending?
    • It’s time to crucify it


Start reading.

Key Scripture:

Exodus 20:7 (NLT)

7 “You must not misuse the name of the LORD your God. The LORD will not let you go unpunished if you misuse his name.

Exodus 3:13–14 (NLT)

13 But Moses protested, “If I go to the people of Israel and tell them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ they will ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what should I tell them?”

14 God replied to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. Say this to the people of Israel: I AM has sent me to you.”

Isaiah 29:13 (NLT)

13 And so the Lord says,

      “These people say they are mine.

    They honor me with their lips,

      but their hearts are far from me.

    And their worship of me

      is nothing but man-made rules learned by rote.

Mark 7:6–7 (NLT)

6 Jesus replied, “You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you, for he wrote,

    ‘These people honor me with their lips,

      but their hearts are far from me.

    7 Their worship is a farce,

      for they teach man-made ideas as commands from God.’

Start talking. Find a conversation starter for your group.

  • If you could choose a new name for yourself, reflecting a personal quality or aspiration you hold dear, what would it be and why?

Start sharing. These questions are to help get your group thinking and to create openness.

  • Read Exodus 20:7.  What does it mean to misuse the name of God? How do you misuse God’s name in your daily life and conversations?”
  • Why is the misuse of God’s name considered a sin that “will not go unpunished?” How does this impact how you view this command?
  • Read Exodus 3. Discuss how the sermon’s exploration of God’s name as ‘I am who I am’ reveals aspects of His eternal nature. How does this shape our understanding of God?
  • Read Isaiah 29:13 and Mark 7:6-7. What do these Scriptures reveal about using, misusing and bearing God’s name? Can you share a personal experience where you have seen or wrestled with this?
  • The sermon encouraged us to revere and honor God’s name by repenting of our sins. What are practical ways we can embody this in our daily lives?
  • In light of this message, how can we as a Small Group and individuals ensure that our actions and words honor God’s name?

Start doing. Commit to a step and live it out this week.

  • Identify and write down one area of your life where your actions don’t align with your words. Take one step to bring that action in line with your words, and God’s will for your life.

Start praying. Be bold and pray with power.

  • Heavenly Father, we thank You for the insights and understanding we’ve gained today about honoring Your holy name. Guide us this week as we strive to reflect Your character in our words, actions, and thoughts. Help us to be mindful of the ways we represent You in our daily lives, and instill in us a deeper reverence for Your name. We ask for Your wisdom and grace to live out what we have learned, and to be lights in the world that glorify You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Start digging. For further study.


Jeff Lindholm

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