Today’s reading includes Numbers 6:1-7:89 , Mark 12:38-13:13, Psalm 49:1-20, Proverbs 10:27-28.
As I read Numbers 6:22-28, my heart was joyful and my mind traveled down memory lane. This is the prayer we have prayed over our children at night for many, many years. I touch their heads with each phrase and the young ones fight over who gets the last line, so we have to say “give you peace” twice. It is a priestly blessing–words of affirmation and words of promise. It my daily prayer for my children. Let’s look at it together.
22 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 23 Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying, Thus you shall bless the Israelites: You shall say to them,
24 The Lord bless you and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.
We have said these words over our children for many years, but it was only recently that I took time to read the next verse, verse 27.
27 So they shall put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.
I didn’t realize that in saying this priestly prayer over them, I was actually putting the Lord’s Name upon them. Think about it for a moment. When a couple gets married, the bride usually takes the name of the groom. We know that scripture declares that we, the Church, is the bride and Christ is the groom. We take His Name.
For your Creator will be your husband; the LORD of Heaven’s Armies is his name! He is your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, the God of all the earth.
And maybe an even better example of this is adoption. We have adopted two children from China. When they were in China, they bore the name of their situation. All orphans are given a name, but the last name is an abbreviation of the city in which they were abandoned. So, all orphans in the city have the same last name, forever identifying them as orphans. They could not have escaped that lot in life, even after they were grown, if they had stayed there. When we adopted them, we gave them our name. They are and forever will be Berrys. They will never again be identified as orphans for they bear our name, which tells the world they are a part of our family. As wonderful as this is, how much more glorious is our adoption into the family of God.
15 For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, “Abba![a] Father!”
When we receive Jesus as our Savior and Lord, as our Bridegroom, when we are adopted into the family of God, we receive a new name. We are no longer identified by our past, we are identified as a child of God. He puts His Name upon us. And what a mighty powerful name that is! Praise him this day that He is willing to give us His Name. May we live a life worthy of that beautiful Name!