Proverbs 22:1 (Berean Study Bible)
1 A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favor is better than silver or gold.
What is the difference between a ‘good’ name and a ‘bad’ name? The number of syllables? The number of consonants? What about how the name is perceived among family, friends, and even enemies?
Names are an incredibly important part of the Bible. They denoted status and wealth, standing with God, and one’s place within a community or body of believers. In the same way, God’s many names communicate His power, love, and authority over every living thing. His many good names are on display for all to see, and they are met with intense reaction from people on all sides of the Christian spectrum.
It is important to remember that God’s names are not static or dead, but very much alive! In Hebrews 4:12, the Apostles remind us that “the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” God’s word, as well as His names, are connected indisputably to the Bible. As it is our job to ‘go into all the world’ preaching the Gospel and making Christ’s good name known, we must be careful to always choose a good name in word, deed, and thought.
Our actions as Christians represent God, and subsequently each of His names. We may not necessarily be the Balm of Gilead or the ‘Messiah,’ but we reflect the glory of His good names through our lives here on Earth. We must be increasingly cautious to remain upright and righteous in our dealings, no matter how insignificant they may seem at the time.
How should we as Christians choose a good name while serving God on Earth?
Remove yourself from situations in which choosing a good name may not be possible. Each of us know our own heart, and know what circumstances may cause us to stumble and fall. Release yourself from a pattern of sin and regret by lifting yourself with God’s help. Friend, He wants you to choose a good name. Allow Him to help you always!
Allow yourself some time to simply live and be with Christ. Spending quiet time in prayer, faithful fellowship, and in mentorship are excellent ways to pursue this peace every day. Obey the word of the Lord, and allow His good name to live within you. He is in your court, Believer!
It is one thing to willingly fall into a scenario in which your good name may be sullied, but quite another when you stumble into places, people, or circumstances that incidentally incriminate you. While these are not always avoidable, it is important to practice good judgement and discernment to prevent unfortunate situations from arising. Will being alone with this person allow you to maintain God’s good name? What about the company you partake in, or the weekend activities you pursue?
It may feel like a heavy weight to choose a good name today, but reader, rest assured that God is always on your side. His yoke will be light, and He will care for you in all things. Choose a good name today, and uphold the mighty name of Jesus!
What steps can you take today towards choosing a good name? What have you already done to edify the name of Christ through your own name? How can you help others stay on the path as well? The name of God is nothing to be taken lightly, and should be protected through our earthly words and deeds. Choose a good name today and for all time!
Ecclesiastes 7:1 (New English Standard Version)
1 A good name is better than fine perfume, and one's day of death is better than his day of birth.
Acts 7:10 (Berean Study Bible)
10 And delivered him out of all his afflictions, and gave him favour and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh king of Egypt; and he made him governor over Egypt and all his house.