Bella Vista Church of Christ

LIFELINES

12/13/2017

Randall Caselman

 

Holding God To Be Hallowed

 

  The disciples of Jesus came asking, "Teach us to pray." The first petition in the Lord's Prayer is "Hallowed be Thy Name." When we pray this line, we are recognizing God as: Deity. Holy, Holy, Holy. Yahweh. I Am who I Am. God. Jehovah. Lord. Creator. Sovereign. You see, God is like an iceberg; these titles, attributes, and descriptions, only describe the tip of God's nature. What do you suppose would happen if we really, really, held the name of God to be Hallowed? Wouldn't it lead us into a closer, more intimate, walk with Him, and the development of more holiness in ourselves? Indeed!

 

  God is to be Hallowed in our nation. In our post-modern culture, the United States is becoming anti-Christian. The America that was once concerned with religion, Christian faith and practice, is fading into selfish humanism. Our history books are being rewritten to say that we were never, nor are we now, a Judao-Christian nation. Disturbing! There are social, political, and theological forces at work in our country that few, if any, of us can even begin to understand.

 

  Like it or not, we've all been touched by Satan's influence. For instance, if you and I were asked to re-write the Constitution of the United States, what ten laws would we select to be the basis of all others? Would we begin with the demand that the Name of God be respected? Him first? No substitutes? Would we demand that His Name not be verbally violated? His day be celebrated? Would coveting, sexual purity, honoring parents, be among our top ten laws? We must admit that we too have conformed, been squeezed, into to post-modern thinking, living. God has the answer to our wayward behavior:  "If my people,who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land" (2 Chronicles 7.14).

 

  Hallowed in our churches. If the church doesn't hold God's Name Hallowed, who will? Who will indeed? God works through His people. The Church must be distinctively different from the world or it is not the church. Have we forgotten our basic Greek? Ecclesia is "called out"— Called out for a specific purpose. Peter said, "to be a peculiar people showing forth the promises of God." There's no other organization on earth commissioned to hold His Name Hallowed. We do it by being a church family faithful to The Book. His Will, His Word, must be held as the highest authority, and never replaced with personal feelings, political correctness, human reasoning, tradition or experience. Amen?

 

  Hallowed in self. Existentialism holds that there is no authority higher than self and our own personal preferences. Humanism teaches that truth is "personal" and "relative." Relativism allows for my truth and your truth, but no absolute truth. During the time of the Judges the nation of Israel was in disarray. They lost their political confederacy. Were in a state of spiritual bankruptcy. It was Israel's Dark Ages. Scripture gives us the reason: "Every man did that which was right in his own eyes."  Here it is, we must place the preferences of God before our own. He must be given His rightful place in our personal ethics, in our marriages, our homes, at work, in our entertainment choices. Awe, respect, reverence for God is personal. Faith is personal. Salvation is personal. Sometimes I see brethren become overly concerned with the actions of others. They get upset at family, preachers, Elders, fellow Christians, working companions, when the focus first, foremost, and forever should be on self. The question becomes: Is God Hallowed in MY Life?

 

  I call you to pray daily that God's Name be regarded as Holy in our nation, our churches and above all in ourselves. Let us fall on our knees and petition; "Hallowed Be Thy Name."

 

—Randall Caselman