No Other Name
What's in a name? Do you recall that question from Romeo and Juliet? Juliet was trying to persuade Romeo to change his name, forsake his family connection, and marry her. For Juliet, the name meant nothing; Romeo would still be Romeo no matter what he was called. As things turned out, it wasn’t that easy. In fact, names mean quite a bit. They are part of our identity, link us to our history, and shape who we are.
That is especially true of, “The name that is above every name” (Philippians 2:9), Jesus. It was in his name that the Apostle Peter healed a man outside the temple one afternoon (Acts 3:1-10) which resulted in a sermon being preached to an amazed crowd that had witnessed the whole thing (Acts 3:11-26). When Peter called for the lame man to rise and walk, he did so, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth.” Within hours, the religious leaders were up in arms. Some weeks prior they had seen to the execution of Jesus, and now people were being healed in his name. So, Peter and John were arrested, held overnight, and questioned the next morning. During the interrogation they were asked, “By what power or by what name did you do this?” They answered, “By the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead.” What’s in a name? Well, if it’s the name of Jesus, all the power of God apparently. And it is no different today. We’ll look at together in Acts 4:1-12 this Sunday and see the implications for our lives.