Recently I got involved in a conversation that truly frustrated me. It was from a post and comments claiming that Jesus is the anti-Christ. Sadly, all the comments were condemning, judgmental, demeaning, and off-the-wall. I have said it before and I will say it again: this attitude is wholly and completely unBiblical.
It always starts with a question and then people rant back and forth about how the name Jesus is fake, how anyone who was saved in the name of Jesus was not properly saved, and the followed up by the fact that the speaker ends up elevating their testimony above that of others.
I always see such hate and pride in the threads, as well as a distinct lack of love. Each person acting as though they are next to perfect because of the way they believe, or the way they spell and pronounce their chosen name for our Messiah. Interestingly enough, they all speak loudly about how their chosen “name” is the ONLY right one. While at the same time, they respect each other’s decision to believe differently than they do, UNTIL someone says, “Well, I use the name Jesus!” Then the gloves come off and they come out fighting, sometimes even calling the “Jesus-speaker” horrid names or condemning them to Hell.
When I saw it crop up for about the 20th time in one week, I sat and posted one simple statement: "Oh my gosh.....This has to stop...... " That was all - and I meant it. I just didn’t have the energy to say anything more. It reminded me of Jesus telling the pharisees they made the teachings of Yahweh of no effect by their vain traditions and man made rules. I often don’t know if people realize how they sound when they do these things – when they place their-self as judge AND JURY over every soul based on a person's vocabulary. They seem to be saying, “I have a greater place in Heaven than YOU do because I say the name RIIIIIIIIGHT!” Right by the standards of WHOM, though?
There seems to be no compassion, no kindness anymore for others. Put aside the fact that there is plenty of evidence to show that in the ancient times, Yeshua’s name had been recorded as Iesus (Now pronounced Jesus). There is physical evidence which shows that the sound of the letter “J” is ancient as well. (LINK TO BOOK on the topic)
Being in a ministry that deals with SO MANY people of differing faiths all at once, having family and friends in SO MANY different places in spirituality, I can’t help to ask what Abba would think of me if I told people or even implied, “My loved ones just aren’t good enough for Yahweh” or “My loved ones just aren’t ‘there’ yet.” And all this based on speaking the right name V. the wrong one.
Many of my friends know that I have come out of Mormonism – a place were I spent 25 years of my life. I am quite familiar with belonging to a magic religion where you are “not good enough” unless you do and say things just right.
These groups where people go to try and learn “truth” have members who cannot even agree on spellings, pronunciations, or even names. Our article titled “The Name Game" is a perfect example of why we don’t get into that nonsense. And that includes against people who use the name Jesus. True confessions? Jim and I often use the name Jesus, too – in written form or as we speak.
When people find fault with one group of people because they don't liek the name they use for Our Saviour, but tolerate other spellings, it gives a hypocritical view of things, to say the least. But worse than that, if each of “you” on a group or page pronounce a different name or spelling of “The Name,” if you all can’t agree on one name within your little group, what right do you all have to judge others on their chosen name of reference? None.
So many people have been saved in the name of Jesus – now you want to tell them they are not really saved?
So many people have been healed in the name of Jesus – now you want to tell them they are not really healed? I have actually had this done – I have discussed some of the traumas my own children went through when they were very young and how they received healing and protection. When I have shared, I have actually had someone tell me those were not of Yahweh – they were from Satan.
Right now one of our girls is expecting her first child. Some 30 years ago, I was pregnant with her when my eldest came down with chicken pox, and then three weeks later, she was diagnosed with meningitis.
Her pediatrician was seriously concerned for her and drove from his house to the hospital in 15 minutes – it normally took about 30. He needed to do a spinal tap for final confirmation.
He never needed to – 24 hours later, she was 100% better and was released from the hospital. Her doctor looked at me and asked what I had done to her – I simple said, 'You’ll never believe me." He pressed me and I answered: "Prayed." Guess who I prayed to? Jesus. She is now 36 and momma to our eldest grandchild. No one can tell me Jesus doesn’t heal.
And that is just one example of many, many, MANY more!
How about a miracle of provision? Our neighbors our first Sukkot here. We had no money, not a dime, and no real food to speak of. I was SO UPSET, not knowing how we were going to eat, let alone feast. I prayed, and that afternoon, they called us and asked us over. They gave us SO MUCH FOOD. We had more than enough to eat and feast on until we got paid again. Did I pay attention what name I used when I prayed? No, I simply prayed. I may have said Abba or Father, Jesus or Yeshua. It didn’t matter – He heard my prayers and He blessed us greatly through the love and kindness of our dear friends.
Yesterday a friend summed it up to me while I was ranting. She said, “He more than knows when someone is calling on Him. Whether they pronounce it right or not.”
I try to liken it to this: When I was on a crowded beach or in a packed shopping mall with my kids, I would KNOW when they called out for me. I would. It wouldn’t matter how much noise was aroung, if they cried out using MOM, or MOMMY, or MOMMA, or MAAAAWWWWWHHHHHHHHHHHHHM!!!! In that long drawn out version. Or the worst one of all – the blood curdling scream. I WOULD KNOW THEM. And I would answer them.
Would I stand there and say, “NOPE! You didn’t call me by the right name!”
Let that sink in for a moment or two…What more, or less, would Yahweh do for me?…I call this “Parenting like Abba.” Because He was the perfect example of how we ought to parent and we can see his guidance and teaching in The Word. Goodness! He even put the people of the Exodus on restriction for FORTY YEARS!
I hope by now you get my point. By OUR fruit, they will know us. We can choose to incessantly condemn those we believe are “not there yet.” Or we can admit, maybe WE are the ones who aren’t really THERE yet. And work on OUR hearts and the REAL TRUTHS that need to be addressed and changed in us. While not worrying about whether someone else is crying out, Papa!; Abba; Yahweh; Elohim; Yehovah, Yeshua, Yehoshua, and such. Time to build our relationship, not just our vocabulary!!!
Blessings and shalom.
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Lead Author (Bio)
Jim, (Judi's husband), has Sephardi Jewish ancestry and is a minister and head of Shofar Productions. Jim was a denominational pastor, hospital chaplain, and former director of a non-profit community organization.
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