The Bearing of a Name

In Isaiah 4.1, these words are recorded: "In that day seven women will take hold of one man and say, 'We will eat our own food and provide our own clothes; only let us be called by your name. Take away our disgrace!'" Given the circumstances of the time--the violent overtaking of Jerusalem--it might well be the case that so many of the town's men were killed in battle, that in terms of a man-to-woman ratio, after the fght, there was left only 1 man to about every 7 women. Now, a lot of men would love to have 7 women bickering over them but if we can see past that for a moment, we find something very interesting in this passage.

We all know that names were of great importance in the ancient world but according to this passage, there was a link between betrothal and the taking or bearing of a name. Abraham Heschel points out in his book The Prophets(which I will post a book review on soon), that the prophet Jeremiah was one who knew what it meant to be intimate with God, it meant "the joy and delight of being, as it were, a bride...The prophet's situation was one of betrothal to the Lord, to the God of hosts (145-6)."

From the standpoint of application, this got me thinking today, "Have I been bearing the name of the Lord? Have I been sympathetic to His call, to His pathos and to His anguish over all of humanity's sinfulness? Am I exemplifying any of the characteristics of one of God's prophets? Do others even know or are they even the slightest bit aware that I am betrothed/married to Him and that I have taken His name?" I guess that question confronts all of us who desire to be called "God's people." So, what about you, how can you answer those questions? How's your marriage with God?

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