“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…” (Deut. 5:11).
What is in a name? One’s name is associated with the individual’s character, reputation and nature, which distinguishes them from others. When using someone’s name in conversation with others, almost immediately, everything that we have knowledge of about this individual (whether true or perceived, good or bad) will come flooding to the forefront of our minds. This especially true when we consider our use of God’s name.
The importance to be understood here is when we invoke the name of God within our conversations, in essence, we are invoking the reality of the presence and power of God and all that represents the true nature of God. This explains the imperative need for understanding why we are commanded to not “take the name of the Lord in vain…” (v.11). To take the name of the Lord in vain is to use His name lightly and in an empty way. When we engage in this type of behavior, everything we say and do in connection to God’s name is automatically attributed and understood to being a part of Who He is.
(…to be continued…)