He Knows Your Name 7th Jan 07
Re 21:22-27 But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light. And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it. Its gates shall not be shut at all by day (there shall be no night there). And they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it. But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
I wonder if we contemplate heaven enough – there shall be no night there – no need of a sun and a moon – just the glory of God – Jesus is it’s light! Does that mean no need of sleep, never getting tired or bored? No darkness because there is only absolute glory and perfection? The nations and kings bringing their glory -- I think that says there is only one people, no divisions, cultures, just the One King and God. And those named in the Lambs Book of Life.
Ex 32:32 Yet now, if You will forgive their sin—but if not, I pray, blot me out of Your book which You have written.”
Da 12:1 “At that time Michael shall stand up, The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; And there shall be a time of trouble, Such as never was since there was a nation, Even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, Every one who is found written in the book.
Lk 10:20 Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.”
Right from Moses it has been known there is a Book of Life – that God chooses a people by name and records those names in His Book – it is not by chance, there are no exceptions, no mistakes. It seems also, that those called by name and chosen know they are called – it brings an assurance and confidence to follow after Christ.
Jn 6:44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.
Jn 10:1-4 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice.
Is 49:15-16 “Can a woman forget her nursing child, And not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, Yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands;
There was a moment – the exact right moment when God called you by Name – He called you in such a way that you had to respond to Him – I’m not sure many of us even heard the Voice that called our name – not with the hearing of the ears – it was a whisper in the heart – deep, drawing, loving! It was a tender, gentle voice that broke through the barriers of our resistance without our even being aware – God drawing us to Christ.
From the moment He called you He wrote your name on His Hand – always before His face so it is impossible for Him to forget you! Your name was already in His Book Of Life – ready for that day when you stand before Him and He checks your name and places that tick there beside it! This one will see no more night! This one will enter into the joy of the Lord. – Isn’t it amazing that not one of us had any influence upon God to cause Him to notice us.
Eph 1:3-6 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.
These are things hard to understand – but our names were written before we were born! We were chosen before the foundation of the world –
and I think from the moment of birth God began to whisper our names, He began to call us and reach out to us. But we were deaf, many of us, because our environment never taught us to listen for Him – our hearts were deafened by the noise of our upbringing. How much more in this age than in times past!! I often look back at the Puritans and have many times called out to God and said O Father do it again – make me like one of those men of God who KNEW You!!
Then I think of their lifestyles – they were set apart to Him – totally, there was nothing else. Many of them from youth just sought after God – they never entered into the sinful attractions of the age – the drunkenness and promiscuity – but seemed to KNOW God very clearly. After hundreds of years it is still their writings that influence most. But the more we have moved down through History – the more distractions we seem to have -- internet, TV etc.
But much more we have lost the sanctity of Sunday – The Lord’s Day – we have lost the deep influence of Christian family, so lived and practiced, that it opened young children up to know the whispers of God to the heart by the Holy Spirit – whispers so clear because they were untainted by the ambitions of Pentecostalism, performance and acceptance by achievement – they just loved God. --- Our environment has such an influence on how our hearts hear.
Callum – little boy, no TV, country – Orama – spoke in tongues in his sleep. Would listen at door! One night 7 years old woke to hear him really weeping, sobbing, I went into his room to find him standing in a corner face into the wall – he was in real shock and was shaking and trembling. I asked what was the matter? – he told me that the school bus had gone round the corner and run into the grader coming down the hill.
The bus crashed over the side and rolled down the hill hundreds of meters scattering children all over the place. He described it very vividly – death and injuries. I prayed for him and put him back to bed – it was like he was still asleep – in the morning I asked him how he was feeling – he said: - Last night I dreamed that Jesus came and stood beside my bed and told me He loved me. He remembered nothing of the bus crash. It was just not there.
The children were taken from the bay we lived in up a gravel road and into another bay to school. The road was steep, winding, with many blind corners and in most places single lane.
It was maintained by the local council and graded once a year. Usually the council warned when they were coming. I was so impacted by what had happened that night that in the morning I went to the bus driver and told him about the dream and to look out for the grader.
He said they had not been warned by the council and so dismissed it really. But it stuck in his mind and as the bus went up the hill and came to the most narrow and steep part of the road he slowed right down and went slowly round the corner right into the grader! If he had been going as he normally did he would have fulfilled the dream. He was shaken and very thankful.
Now we could assume that Callum was deeply spiritual – and maybe at that time he was?
But God knows us by name and He knows the plans He has for us – and I’m not so sure this whole story is just about Callum – there were 20 plus kids on that bus and maybe it was one – if not some, of those that God was protecting and guarding to make sure they are able to fulfil what He has already determined for their lives. But at that moment Callum had been able to respond to God – He had been clear enough for the Holy Spirit to use uncluttered. (No TV etc.)
How cluttered our young lives are now – invaded by the world in all it’s subtlety – we don’t think this movie is bad, or that animated cartoon or this video game or television – and within themselves they are not necessarily evil --- but they fill the mind and blunt the heart – and once an awakening has taken place it can never be erased! It taints and somehow diminishes our ability to hear the voice of God in our hearts.
I think this is one of the reasons we find it so hard to KNOW God’s voice and instead of trying to hear Him inwardly in the Spirit we try to hear Him outwardly in the ear. We stop relating to the inner prompting of the Spirit – that prompting that guides and leads and protects us – giving that gentle warning to resist and turn aside. Because our hearts are numbed by the constant barrage of other peoples opinions and dreams – others imaginations shut our own!
1 Co 10:12-13 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.
I knew this personally just this week I was in a situation where I could feel the anger rising in a way I haven’t for long time – I wanted to roar out my indignation – but the Holy Spirit really prompted me – I know it was Him – I could hear in my heart – “bring every thought captive to Christ, resist the devil and he will flee from you” – it wasn’t an audible voice it was in the heart – a whisper – a knowing, a comfort. It was Jesus calling me by name – my name – personal.
He said My Sheep hear my voice. In the midst of turmoil I KNEW His comfort – I knew His peace that surpassed understanding – it was with words of the heart – Holy Spirit utterings deep inside. It is here that He calls us by name – He knows your name. You know when we are most distressed, most in need of comfort – most alone and frightened – it is not words and great explanations that bring peace – it is the Holy Spirit just saying your name! – Mary Tomb.
Jn 20:14-16 Now when she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, and did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” She, supposing Him to be the gardener, said to Him, “Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to Him, “Rabboni!” (which is to say, Teacher).
Mary was looking at the same man who had delivered her of 7 devils, the man she had worshipped with broken alabaster abandon, this man she had walked beside 2 years or more – but because her mind told her He was dead and buried, because her eyes had seen Him hanging on the Cross and now because His body was gone – her heart betrayed her – she saw Him and couldn’t see, she heard His voice and didn’t hear – until He called her name.
The moment she heard her name “Mary!” her heart was awakened to Him again. – Remember Jacob – when he connived to deceive his father and brother to get a blessing – he and his mother made up the stew and disguised who he was and he approached his father as Esau –
Ge 27:18-24 So he went to his father and said, “My father.” And he said, “Here I am. Who are you, my son?” Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your firstborn; I have done just as you told me; please arise, sit and eat of my game, that your soul may bless me.” But Isaac said to his son, “How is it that you have found it so quickly, my son?” And he said, “Because the Lord your God brought it to me.” Isaac said to Jacob, “Please come near, that I may feel you, my son, whether you are really my son Esau or not.” So Jacob went near to Isaac his father, and he felt him and said, “The voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.” And he did not recognize him, because his hands were hairy like his brother Esau’s hands; so he blessed him. Then he said, “Are you really my son Esau?” He said, “I am.”
Who are you my son? Are you really my son Esau? Isaac wanted his name in order to bless him – afterwards Jacob fled and spent years with Laban, married Rachael and Leah and then with his family and fortune decided to return to his country – all the way fearing the wrath of Esau. But along the way he meets with God and ends up fighting, wrestling for a blessing –
Ge 32:24-27 Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day. Now when He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob’s hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him. And He said, “Let Me go, for the day breaks.” But he said, “I will not let You go unless You bless me!” So He said to him, “What is your name?” He said, “Jacob.”
God asked him – “What is your name?” – he had denied his own name and stolen a blessing that belonged to someone else – now he was fighting to be blessed and God had to have him acknowledge his name – God knows us by name and to bless us and keep us He calls us by name.
Ps 139:16-18 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them. How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; When I awake, I am still with You.
There is nothing about our lives that God does not know – not past, present, or future and He is far more able to bring about His purposes and plans than we are to prevent them. Yes, we do things wrong, and we ignore Him, and reject Him, and rebel – but He is ever faithful He cannot deny Himself – even if we are unfaithful He remains faithful – and He is ever whispering your name – not just to instruct or discipline or correct – it is the whisper of love.
But it is the whisper of the heart – the Holy Spirit in the heart.
Ro 5:5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Heb 3:15 while it is said: “Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”
You know if you hear Him calling your name – He can not say I never knew you!!! He might say you slipped or even stumbled and fell – but if he has called your name – He knows you!
Job 2:7-10 So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and struck Job with painful boils from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. And he took for himself a potsherd with which to scrape himself while he sat in the midst of the ashes. Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!” But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.
Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity? No matter what happens in your life, if you will listen – you will hear Him calling your name – and that is enough!
The Holy Spirit in the heart – He is calling us to hear Him – towards Him – longing for us to know and acknowledge Him – The Spirit of Jesus.