Exodus 20:7 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that takes his name in vain.
Blasphemy? What is it? According to the 10 Commandments it is #3 declared in Exodus 20:7. Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that takes his name in vain. Do you ever do this? Now wait a minute, not just the most common form of this, but any of the forms. I really do not want to list them, but to get this point across I will have to.
My first example of a now days common use of Gods name in vain can be found in most chat rooms and text messages today – OMG, which is “Oh my G-d”. A using of Gods Holy name to show surprise, shock, disgust or awe. Any of which is blasphemy. This can be compared to the ever popular “Oh, Lord” or “Good Lord”. I even hear this at churches, even exclaimed by some pastors. Why? The same as any other vain vocalization of Gods name, there is no true reverence for His name by the person saying it. Could they be saying it in ignorance? Perhaps if the person doesn’t know what the names of God are, but that is doubtful.
Do you ever say “God bless you” when someone sneezes? If so why? Is it because it comes natural or is the polite thing to do? You always have? Your Mama always did? Anything except for truly asking God to bless that person? If so, then that is using the name of God in vain. I prefer Gesundheit, which is German for “good health”. Most of the time I do not say anything. We all sneeze, just as we all cough and I never hear anyone wishing blessing on someone for coughing. The pagan reason for saying “God bless you” or just the shortened “Bless you” goes way back, arguably from one of 3 reasons or perhaps all 3. 1.) Well wishes that someone did not become infected with a deadly sickness, namely the plague of the 14th Century. 2.) To prevent the soul from leaving the body. 3.) Protection from a demon or evil being from entering the mouth of a sneezing individual. All of which would probably not work as is.
Next is a the more blatant forms, the flat out “Jesus Christ” sometimes with a more colorful middle name added. Even the shortened “Jeez” is derived from the Lords name. A total disregard for His name. This is becoming more prevalent over time as this world spins out of control.
A very common usage in churches, by pastors, standing in the pulpit, addressing the congregation is having the people turn to the text of the lesson and saying “Say praise the Lord when you get there” then everyone repeats. Are these people so blind to this open disregard for the Lord? They use His name as an affirmation, instead of saying “Got it”, “There”, “Ready to go” – SOMETHING – ANYTHING except Gods name. Would you say "praise the Lord" when you arrive at a restaurant or someones home you are going to visit? (If it is in-laws, probably never - just a joke I love my extended family very much)My point is - Gods name doesn't have to be used in place of a four letter filth word to be used in vain.
But the 3rd commandment really goes deeper than just using Gods name out of place, out of disgust, as an affirmation or as a well blessing for having hay fever. How about the person that defiles Gods name by claiming to be in Christ but live differently? The professing “Christian” that lives a life of immorality, blatantly forsaking Christ and still claim to be a Christian. This is an attempt to cheapen Gods Holy name. A lot of people I am around daily do this, the profess Christ in one breath, then brag about their sins the next - while listening to "AC/DC Highway to Hell".
My last example will be said a lot over the next week – “God Bless America”. Now think about it- in order for God to bless America, He will first have to be blessed by America. His Name will have to be revered, the killing of Innocent babies will have to stop, the rampant homosexuality will have to cease, the collective turning of Americas back on God and everyone says “God Bless America”? Why? And how is that not the biggest charge of vain words against God? A society that is so totally depraved that everything is acceptable - as long as it's not in the Bible.
To me, and this is my opinion, my feeling and right now I can not back it up with a scripture passage is: A true born again, new creation, in Christ Christian can break any of the 10 commandments, except this one. I think that if a person has surrendered to God, they can not even fathom using the Saviours name a a curse word, it is not possible. If you claim to be Christs, born anew of God and you do – then I very seriously think you need to examine yourself as 2 Cor 13:5 tells us “Examine yourselves”. Do you ever examine your fruits? Your walk? Why not? We are commanded to. I would much rather take the test here to assure my salvation than wait until I am standing before God and He judges me. Other than this commandment, everyone breaks the others from time to time – a little fib here, taking a paper clip from work, getting angry at someone without cause, looking with lust and so on – but this Commandment shows the heart of a person, how much they love God and cherish His name and honor and revere His names as revealed to us.
A few verses to ponder this day –
Matthew 12:36-37 36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.
Philippians 2:9-11 9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Proverbs 29:20 Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him.
Psalms 139:20 For they speak against thee wickedly, and thine enemies take thy name in vain.
1 Peter 3:10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile
You will one day stand before the great and awesome God that revealed Himself to us through His Word. Will you be able to say – Lord I have revered Your Name, I have held close to my heart the names that you gave yourself, I truly gave my life to you and repented of my sins and hatred for you. You saved me by grace and there is nothing that I did or that I can do to merit the Justification that is only possible by the blood of Jesus. Thank you my dear God and Lord of all.