Proverbs 22:1 says, “A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, loving favor rather than silver and gold.”
Names are very important in the Bible. That is why the Lord changed Abram to Abraham which means multitude of nations (Genesis 17:5).
Years ago, at youth camp, my parents took each child’s name and gave them a spiritual application. Mine is Judith, which means praise, and Marilyn, which meaning comes from the bitter myrrh resin. I am to turn my bitter circumstances into praise.
1 Chronicles 1-10 is a list of genealogies.Yet in chapter 4 there is something very significant I want you to see. Verse 9 says that Jabez was more honorable than his brothers. His mother called him Jabez, “…because I bore him in pain.”
Verse 10 says, “And Jabez called on the God of Israel says, Oh, that You would bless me indeed and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain! So God granted him what he requested.”
Jabez refused to own the label his mother placed on him. He refuted (deny or contradict a statement of accusation) it! He pleaded with the Lord to not allow what she named him to define his life.
So it is with us. The pronouncements, labels, and judgments people place on us are not who we are. We need to refute them, and not allow them to shape our lives.
Here is who we are:
Chosen – John 15:16
Blameless – Ephesians 1:4
Justified – Romans 5:1
Forgiven – Ephesians 1:7
Healed – Isaiah 53:5
Living stone – 1 Peter 2:4
Ambassadors – 2 Corinthians 5:20
Sealed for eternity – Ephesians 1:13
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
Labels in our past are passed away. Don’t let them cling to you. Cast them off! Isaiah 62:2 is speaking of Israel but we can apply it to ourselves. It says, “…You shall be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord will name.”