What is the Name of Jesus about?
And what does it mean to have faith in His Name?
In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk…
And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong…
Acts 3:6, 16
Short hours before Jesus’ arrest and crucifixion, He gave His disciples a new teaching, letting them know that they were to use His Name in prayer. First He said, “And whatsoever ye ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it” (John 14:13-14). And later in the same conversation, preparing them for their own relationship with Father God, He added, “Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you” (John 16:23).
The Name of Jesus Mixed with Faith
The disciples took this teaching to heart and, under the care of the Holy Spirit, matured in their understanding of praying in the Name of Jesus. Scripture tells a story of the Apostles Peter and John, in the early years of the church, using the Name of Jesus when they ministered to a man born lame. Peter prayed over him, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6).
This was no long involved prayer. Just the Name of Jesus – mixed with his and John’s faith in that Name – and a simple command for what the faith in their hearts saw God enabling this man to do. And God responded and healed him.
Then, as the man walked and leapt and praised God, Peter explained to a rapt crowd about the Name of Jesus, saying, “His name through faith in his name hath made this man strong” (verse 16).
A few years ago I received a long-sought revelation to my heart about the Name of Jesus. This is when I first saw Jesus’ Name as an entity that is a part of, but also distinct from, the Person of Jesus with whom we fellowship.
And as an entity of its own, I saw Jesus’ Name holding the expression of the full life work of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, and filled with all His virtues: His identity, His character, and His values. Immediately, my prayer life became vastly more powerful, effective, and simple, and it has continued so to this day.
Seeing His Name in this way has helped me in a practical way to have a substantial faith in His Name. And ever since, when I think of the Name of Jesus, I see it as carrying Jesus’ love, His humility, His compassion, His shalom peace, and enfolding all the beauty of His emotions. I am aware of it holding every truth Jesus spoke, every temptation He resisted, every healing that He ministered, every deliverance by which He freed people. And I sense it filled with His every act of love, His every work of righteousness, His every step of heartfelt obedience to His Father, and with all the goodness that Jesus lived out in the earth.
When we have faith in the Name of Jesus, it opens to us the kind benefits of His grace, as well as His gifts to us from His suffering: healing through the stripes on His body that was broken for us, and the power and covering of His blood that He shed for the remission of sins. Also, faith in His Name unleashes the life of His resurrection, and His full authority as the glorified Son of God, the Victor who holds the keys to hell and death.
Using His Name from a Heart of Faith
As with all acts of faith in God, using the Name of Jesus is about the heart knowing that Father God will respond in His loving kindness.
I have learned in a functional way that we do not need to speak the original sound of His Name in order to access the full power of the Name. Instead, using His Name in faith is essentially about our heart knowing Who it represents and what it holds. So that, when we speak Jesus’ Name in faith, in whatever language we speak it, it is mighty in the spiritual realm. The angels of God worship, the enemy of God is disempowered, and Father God responds according to His wisdom and His timing – sometimes in ways we do not see.
In scriptural support of this, Jesus told His disciples to baptize believers “in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 28:19). And that’s what ministers still say when they baptize – without using any given names for the Persons of God.
Likewise, I have also learned that the Name of Jesus does not always need to be spoken aloud to do its work, as long as the silence is not from shame of His Name. There can be as much power and effect in crying out the thought of His Name from the heart in prayer. Because God responds to the heart and to the faith in our hearts.
The Most Beautiful Name
In whatever language it is translated into, the Name of Jesus is the most beautiful Name, because it represents the nature and life of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. There is nothing mightier, nothing gentler, nothing more loving than the Name of Jesus, for these are virtues of the Son of God Himself. And we are to use His Name as He lived – in His authority, gentleness, and love.
Most of all, we are to humbly wield His Name with the same heart that Jesus modeled: in loving relationship with Father God, and by the Spirit. And in so doing, we are given the privilege of praying the good and pleasing will of God into the earth.
Father God, thank You for the Name of Jesus that helps us pray Your goodness into life here on the earth! We are grateful! Teach our hearts what is in the Name of Your Son! Lead us into a deeper faith in His Name! The Name of Jesus!