Taking God’s name in vain extends past the OMG‘s and the Oh My G**s that I discuss in my book, Lift Him Up don’t Pull Him Down. The book is written mainly to address those two misused exasperations; both habitually spoken as trash words in society today. Examination into why it is inappropriate to speak God’s holy name in that context is explained throughout the book. And I reveal what we are truly expressing with this misuse, along with giving examples of how trashing God’s name can be corrected.
By including Lift Him Up don’t Pull Him Down in Bible Study groups, I hope to accelerate a much-needed movement of awareness to our LORD’s third commandment. And this awareness will bring change to the misuse. Change that will save us from the second part of the third command which states: “the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses HIs name.”
Another misuse of God’s name, which I admit in the book I am often guilty of, is speaking God’s name with annoyance in my heart. Too often I personally pass on feelings of annoyance to God, when I visit His house. I sin this way many times when I enter a sanctuary in a frustrated state. I spend the whole hour replaying antagonizing events in my head while I falsely praise His name. God, knows I’m not thinking about Him. I robotically demonstrate the ritual of church service while offering no true worship in my heart.
I offer no tribute to God’s name when my heart is twisted in a selfish, anxious state. Yes, my outward actions of praise, smiling, and singing reflect a person immersed in sincere worship. However, because my heart is not straight with the LORD in this circumstance, I am actually a hypocrite. Professing to be following His third commandment but in actuality, abusing His name with my actions and my heart.
This has been is a hard habit for me to break, because I too often allow personal emotion to take over my heart. So when I catch myself recounting unpleasant events during worship, I need to turn them over to God instead. I need to ask forgiveness for my sin, and invite the Holy Spirit to set my heart straight so I can truly experience worshipping the LORD.
God’s Word holds true. He is just and punishes sin. Genesis 19 recalls God destroying Sodom and Gomorrah. And in Numbers 20:12, God tells Moses “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.” This happened because Moses had ignored God’s instruction to speak to the rock at Horeb to make water flow and instead, Moses struck it with his staff.
Moses is the only person in the Bible to speak face-to-face with God, Exodus 33:11 and Numbers 12:8. Also Deuteronomy 34:10 which reads: Since then, no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face, Yet, God chose not to hold back punishment from Moses.
So… knowing that God punished Moses, what right have I to ever doubt that the second part of our LORD’s third commandment will not hold true for we sinners today?