Thursday, 3 January 2019 : Weekday of Christmas Time, Memorial of the Most Holy Name of Jesus (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we celebrate the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Jesus, Our Lord. On this day we focus our attention on the Name which is above all and every other names, as written in the Scriptures, the Name which was revealed by the Archangel Gabriel to Mary, His mother. This is the Name that every knee, in heaven, on earth and in hell, in all of the universe, must bend and give homage, when the Name is uttered and mentioned.

For the name of a person is a very important sign of his or her identity. It is a very major part of his or her identity, what makes up the persona of a person. It is something that makes us unique and stands out from others. And that is why, we also have the practice of naming ourselves and our children after the saints of God, as we want to emulate in our lives, the virtues and the good examples of the saints after whom we have been named, or whom we are naming our children for.

In the history of the people of God, the Name of God is something that is so holy and sacrosanct, that they could not and were not supposed to be able to decipher and to utter it, without committing blasphemy before God. The Holy Name of God, YHVH, is the symbol of His holiness and how He is almighty and great, perfect and holy beyond all comparison and comprehension. To utter His Name would be unthinkable for the people of Israel, and is actually a part of the Ten Commandments, that is, keep the Lord’s Name holy.

But God, in His so great love for us, has willingly decided to become One Who is tangible and approachable, has shown His love for us in the flesh and being, by adopting for Himself, and assuming for Himself, a human existence, that is united to His eternal divinity, in the person and Name of Jesus, the Saviour of the world, Our Lord and King. It is He, Who has been named as such, through Whom our salvation comes from.

That is why, brothers and sisters in Christ, we must not take our Lord’s Name lightly, or worse still, use them in profane and unbecoming way, as how many of us have grown accustomed to, in habits and expressions. There are those who use Our Lord’s Name in vain, when His Name was uttered without even the least bit of knowledge and understanding of the great significance and power behind this Name.

Indeed, God made Himself known to us, by incarnation in the flesh, in Jesus Christ, that we may know Him, and through Him, we are saved. It is by the power of His Name that we have been saved, for He has become our Saviour. But we must never again use His Name in vain, in how we just toss this Name around with contempt and lacking for respect for the One through Whom we have been saved.

Remember, brothers and sisters in Christ, that God had made Himself available to us, by revealing to us His Name, that all of us may know Him and love Him so deeply, that by sharing in His glory, His resurrection from the dead and triumph over evil and death, we may free ourselves from the power of the evil one. Upon the Name of Jesus, even the devil and all those who have reigned over us, must obey and admit their defeat.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, from now on, every time that the Holy Name of Our Lord and God, Jesus Christ, is mentioned, let us reflect on this great love and saving grace we have received from Him, and commit ourselves to honour Him and to love Him all the more. Let us bow down and honour Him, every time His Name is uttered and mentioned, and glorify Him from now on. May God, in His Holy Name, bless us always and keep us from all evil. Amen.

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