Hallowed Be Your Name (Leviticus 24:16) - Radical

Hallowed Be Your Name (Leviticus 24:16)

“Whoever blasphemes the name of the Lord shall surely be put to death. All the congregation shall stone him. The sojourner as well as the native, when he blasphemes the name, shall be put to death.”
-Leviticus 24:16

This is a sobering verse to say the least. A humbling verse. Overwhelming, in a sense, that the penalty for blasphemy is death.
As I reflect on this verse, I am overwhelmed in a fresh way by the reverence and awe and honor that is indeed due the name of the Lord. And I’m convicted.

I’m convicted when I think about how I can, in this world, hear God’s name taken in vain, God’s name misused, God’s name even just used casually. Not even just to hear that. How I can do that if I’m not careful in my own life. So hear these things, even speak this way, in ways that do not honor and revere the name of the Lord. I mean, I could watch a movie or listen to a song, and if I’m not careful, I can hear God’s name taken in vain and not even notice it. Not even notice it. That’s not a good place to be. That’s not a good place for any one of us to be.

May we not be casual in our approach of God and let us be sensitive to ways that God’s name is being misused around us.

Leviticus 24:16 Reminds Us Never to Blaspheme

So let me encourage you to be sensitive to the name of God, to the way you use the name of God, the way I use the name of God. That we would not be casual. We would realize who we’re talking about. When we pray, we’d realize who we’re talking to. This is at the core of just dry, religious, wrote routine. It’s a casual approach to the name of God. It’s a, “Hey, let’s pray.” And we just start saying some words. We don’t even think about who we’re talking to. This is not good.

Let’s treat His name with honor when we call on Him. Let’s realize who we’re calling upon. And then, when we speak about Him, let’s speak about Him with reverence and awe and fear. Let’s be sensitive to ways that His name is being misused around us. Let us hate it. Let’s not be content with that. Let’s certainly not be so complacent with it that we don’t even notice when His name is taken in vain.

Living in Fear and Awe of God

God, we pray. In a world that profanes Your name all the time. And if we’re honest, oh, God, in churches and families and our lives, the way we are so prone to treat Your name casually. So God, we pray that you would help us to honor Your name. God, we pray You’d help us to see this picture in Leviticus 24:16. Obviously, knowing that this doesn’t mean that if somebody takes God’s name in vain today that we should immediately stone him. That’s not the picture we take away from this.

But we do want to take away from this that Your name is high and lifted up. That Your name is worthy of reverence and fear and respect and awe. And when we say it, when we hear it, we want to say it and listen to Your name with a sense of awe and reverence and fear and love and worship. So help us, we pray, to honor Your name even as we pray. Just like You’ve taught us to pray, Lord Jesus. Hallowed by Your name, oh, God, in all the earth. We pray that You would cause Your name to be hallowed, revered, feared, loved, glorified, in our lives, in our families, and in our churches, and more and more in the world, we pray. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

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