Vespers – Spurgeon’s Question 47

“You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.

  • Exodus 20:7

“Q. 47. Which is the Third Commandment?
“A. The Third Commandment is, ‘Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.’ ”

  • Charles H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Catechism (Scripture proofs in bold above)

“Q. 53. Which is the Third Commandment?
“A. The Third Commandment is, ‘Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.’”

  • The Shorter Catechism (Westminster Assembly)

“Q. 111. Which is the Third Commandment?
“A. The Third Commandment is, ‘Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.’ ”

  • The Larger Catechism (Westminster Assembly)

The Larger Catechism, Shorter Catechism and the Spurgeon Catechism are identical in wording.

The ramifications of this commandment has gone far and wide.  Anything from not swearing oaths, to not using any of the names that refer to God in vain to not using foul language.

But I think the biggest aspect of this is to not refer to anything in which God is perceived in a manner short of reverence.

I have talked about how I am casual in my prayers, but I have also mentioned that I address God in a reverent manner.  The same God who struck down Aaron’s two sons for misusing the incense is the same God who wants to have a loving familial relationship with us.  Jesus is our brother, but nothing was made without Jesus.

So, when you say “Oh, My God” that should be a preamble to prayer that is fervent and sincere.  By any other means, especially as an exclamation, we trivialize God and His place in our lives.

When God is only mentioned as a curse word, how could we expect God to rescue us when things go sour.  Just look at the track record of the people of Israel and Judah, through the history books and books of prophecy.  When God is forgotten, ignored, or belittled, punishment was not far away.

And I say this from a corporate level or national level.  When we are God’s elect, fully reborn, our sins are forgiven.  But do not think that a nation with many God-fearing people cannot be punished for wandering from the Truth.  And the other factor is that God has built within this fallen world a means of self-punishment.  The drunk can get a hangover, for example.  And foul language is no exception.  It opens the door to dirty jokes, an escalation of course language, and attracting the wrong crowd which can tempt us further.  This analogy could apply to any of the Ten Commandments.

And now let us sing.

The following song is There’s Something about that Name, He Touched Me, Because He lives is sung by the Gaither Vocal Band, the present make-up of the group.  But since this was at the Dove Awards, a few old members joined in.  My song for the week is the first, but I love this recording.

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus; there’s just something about that name.
Master, Savior, Jesus, like the fragrance after the rain;
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, let all Heaven and earth proclaim
Kings and kingdoms will all pass away,
But there’s something about that name.
Kings and kingdoms will all pass away,
But there’s something about that name.

  • Gloria and Bill Gaither, There’s Something about that Name

Closing Prayer

Dear Lord,
We need You.  We must always address You with reverence.  You are the Creator of all things.  You loved us so much that You sent Your Son to die in our place.  How can we address You in any other manner than with reverence?  While personal posture may not be a big deal, our attitude should be that of the beggar who throws himself down before You.  We can do nothing without You and our speech and the attitude that produces that speech should reflect that.  And yet, You ask us to call You Father, Abba, Daddy.
In thy Name we pray.
Amen

Soli Deo Gloria.  Only to God be the Glory.

One Comment

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  1. Thanks for sharing this. Anita

    Liked by 1 person

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