“You are making an issue of the Name is another accusation that is busy raising its head. “Issues” are, by their very nature, controversial. If a person regards something as unimportant, it is usually not an issue for him. But on the other hand, if that thing has the potential of causing family, church or community opposition, then it is very easy to just leave it alone, so that it does not become an issue.
If we then analyzed what it takes for something to become an issue, we will find that it is always something that has the ability, if embraced, to cost something. In the context of the Name, the actual issue is the persecution that goes hand in hand with it. Few people are prepared to suffer persecution for what they believe.
Anyone who would honestly study the New Testament, will see that the bottom line of persecution is believing in, and proclaiming, the Name of the Saviour.
“And His Name through faith in His Name, has made this man strong...” (Acts 3:16)
“By what power, or by what name have you done this?” (Acts.4:7)
“By the Name of Yahshua the Anointed One... Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:10 & 12)
But that it (belief in the Name) spread no further among the people, let us seriously threaten them that they speak henceforth to no man in this Name. And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the Name of Yahshua. (Acts 4:17-18)
Peter and John were then released, and they immediately rejoined the other believers. The following is the end of the prayer that they then corporately prayed;
“And now, YaHWeH, look on their threats, and give to Your servants all boldness to speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand for healing, and signs, and wonders to take place through the Name of Your set-apart Servant Yahshua.” (Acts 4:29-30 The Scriptures)
YaHWeH answered this prayer, because the apostles reached thousands of people with the gospel of Yahshua, starting the very next day. The result was that Peter and John were re arrested. But the Master delivered them from prison so that they could further proclaim the Name. The soldiers found them, not in prison where they had left them, but at the temple preaching Yahshua.
“And when they brought them, they set them before the council: and the high priest asked them, saying: Did we not seriously command you that you should not teach in this Name? And you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine... Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said; We ought to obey Elohim rather than men.” (Acts 5:27-29)
The council sent them out in order to discus this needling problem in private.
“And when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the Name of Yahshua, and let them go. And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His Name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Yahshua the Anointed.” (Acts 5:40-42)
Stephen, the first Christian martyr, died while calling upon the Name of his Saviour.
“And they stoned Stephen, calling upon Elohim, and saying, Master Yahshua, receive my spirit.” (Acts 7:59)
Philip proclaimed the gospel in Samaria and multitudes streamed into the Kingdom through faith in the Name.
“But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the Kingdom of Elohim, and the Name of Yahshua Messiah, they were baptized, both men and women.” (Acts 8:12)
The apostle Paul severely persecuted those who called upon the Name. Then the Master used him to carry His Name before kings and nations. After his radical conversion on the road to Damascus, when he met the Living Sovereign, Yahshua appeared to a disciple with the name Ananias;
“And the Master said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prays; and has seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight.
Then Ananias answered, Master, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he has done to Your saints at Jerusalem: and here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all that call upon Your Name.
But the Master said unto him, Go your way, for he is a chosen vessel unto Me, to bear My Name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will show him how great things he must suffer for My Name’s sake.” (Acts 9:11-16)
Paul did not let any grass grow under his feet. His conversion was truly radical, and just as fervently he proceeded to proclaim the very Name that he tried so hard to destroy.
“And immediately he preached Messiah in the synagogues, that He is the Son of Elohim. But all that heard him were amazed, and said; Is this not he that destroyed them which called on this Name in Jerusalem...” (Acts 9:20-21)
So we can go on quoting Scripture after Scripture, confirming over and over that the foundation of our faith is very closely related to our Saviour’s Name. We cannot escape the fact that in the Church, the Name is becoming more of an “issue”. Everyone in the above- mentioned Scriptures, confronted with the Name, made an “issue” of it, whether positively or negatively. Therefore I believe that in these last days every believer will also be confronted with the Name, and will simply have no other choice, but the choice of what they are going to do about the Name.
Everyone who makes the right choice – pro the Name, and start walking in it, WILL begin experiencing persecution. (1007)
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