When God Repeats Your Name
The boy Samuel is called by God during a time when the nation of Israel practiced idolatry and did not value God’s word. Our own generation is prone to ignore the word of God or invent its own version of truth. Like Samuel let us respond to God’s personal intimate call own our lives by saying “Speak Lord, for your servant is listening.”
Jesus wept in anguish over the city of Jerusalem because its residents had rejected Him. He was honest about the judgement which was imminent for Jerusalem. It is biblical to weep and be burdened over those who have rejected the refuge that God offers. If you need reconciliation with God in your own life, remember that God said, “I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked,” Ezekiel 33:11 (ESV) and seek His forgiveness and peace.
As Jesus hangs on the cross in darkness, He cries out, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” He is quoting from Psalm 22:1, a psalm which foretells the future suffering of the Messiah. Jesus is not only enduring the agonies of the crucifixion, but is also experiencing being abandoned by God the Father as He bears the sin of the world. Jesus is absorbing the judgement of God we deserve.
Exodus 3:1-6 describes the calling of Moses in an extraordinary event. God reveals Himself as omnipotent over creation as He speaks to Moses from a burning bush which is never consumed. God calls “Moses, Moses” with the repetition of the name signifying affection. He instructs Moses to remove his sandals because the holy God (without equal / without sin) is in this place. Moses responds in fear and humility; God responds with reassurance and sends Moses out to serve him.
“Jacob, Jacob.” God spoke with affection to Jacob in a moment of deep spiritual significance and tells Jacob not to fear as he prepares to enter the land of Egypt. God reassures Jacob that He will keep His promises and prove His faithfulness. Like Jacob, we need a faithful God and God is faithful. Our response must be to embrace God’s promises and act in obedience.
God is always worthy of our trust and obedience, even when His dealings with us are baffling from our perspective. Abraham believed the promises of God in spite of the perplexity of God’s command to sacrifice his son, Isaac. The Lord responded to the obedience of Abraham by calling out “Abraham, Abraham,” and providing a substitute sacrifice. Like Abraham, let us be reminded that no one ever trusted God in vain.
The repetition of a name indicates great urgency paired with affection and intimacy. Jesus gently reminds Martha that our first duty and highest privilege is to humbly listen to Him. We often live shallow lives because we neglect the discipline of listening to Jesus through His word. Like Joshua, let us say to the Lord, “What does my lord say to his servant” Joshua 5:14 (ESV)