Ananias; what a beautiful name!
‘Ananias’ means ‘ YAHWEH has been gracious’.
What a meaningful name!
In the book of Acts we see at least three different persons
having this name but the similarity ends just with the name!
1. Ananias, in Acts 5 : 1 – 11, told lies to the Holy Spirit in matters related to offering and hence received Divine punishment!
2. Ananias, in Acts 9 : 10 – 19, was a disciple at Damascus who received special favor and assignment from GOD and was the first person to accept Paul as a brother in Christ!.
3. Ananias, in Acts 23 : 1 – 5, was a Jewish high priest who was against Paul and his faith; he went even to the extreme of ordering his servants to strike Paul in his mouth when Paul tried to share his testimony!
So, if we wish to name our children as ‘ Ananias ‘ which Ananias we
actually mean? or whether we mean only the meaning?
Is it necessary to give so much importance to names?
If men with name ‘Ananias’ were against GOD’s grace, is it right and worth to judge a person just by his name?
Is it so important to pressurize new believers from other faiths to embrace Christian names by projecting even baptism as a name changing ceremony?
Even though giving Biblical names to our children is a good practice,
we better be clear about the fact that no Biblical name is having the power to open the gates of heaven;
In fact it is not in the name we have, but on our faith in the Name above all names is going to decide and define our destiny!
Yes, whether we believe in the name ‘JESUS’ is the most important
Don’t fool yourselves by assuming that the so called Christian names will be having and giving us some kind of mysterious protection!
No name in this world is really beautiful, if it is not going to be in the book of the Lamb!
Have you accepted JESUS as your personal Savior?
If so, your name, whatever it may be, is so beautiful!
THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST OF NAZARETH …..
…… NOR IS THERE SALVATION IN ANY OTHER,
FOR THERE IS NO OTHER NAME UNDER HEAVEN
GIVEN AMONG MEN BY WHICH WE MUST BE SAVED.
( ACTS 4 : 10 – 12 )
Golgotha; Jesus on the cross;
But, in the city there was a meeting;
The chief priests of the Jews met Pilate, the Governor!
The board put on the cross by Pilate!
The content of the board was the point of discussion!
The Board Meeting!
What kind of heart they had?
When Jesus was bleeding and dying, thirsty and naked,
rejected and abandoned, the title became an important
issue for them!
See the irony!
They ignored JESUS but worrying about HIS title!
The Roman and the Jew were arguing against each other;
The MAN was on the cross!
The Politics and the Religion were fighting against each other;
The HISTORY was on the cross!
The Governor and the Priest were trying to show their superiority;
The SAVIOR was on the cross!
The Ego and the Jealousy were ascertaining their claim;
The LOVE was on the cross!
The Authority and the Apologetic were busy in fault finding;
The TRUTH was on the cross!
The Wolf and the Serpent were manipulating;
The LAMB was on the cross!
The Will of throne and the Will of altar were clashing;
The WILL of GOD was on the cross!
Hey! One minute!
The above lines are not about that board meeting but about
our board meetings!
Yes, even after two thousand years, the way we conduct our
board meetings still remains the same!
Ignoring JESUS and worrying about HIS title!
Ignoring HIS WORD but worrying about HIS work!
For us the size of the hall and the color of the wall are more
important than stopping the culture of the mall in our churches!
For us the height of the tower and the style of the hour are
more important than the depth of HIS POWER!
At least Pilate and the priests did not claim themselves as
disciples of JESUS!
But we claim that we love CHRIST and boast about our faith!
You know, Pilate and the priests failed to see just one feet
below the board; the thorn crowned face of JESUS!
Yes friend, if we all see that face regularly, or at least a second
before seeing our agenda, surely in our board meetings, not just
in our churches and organisations but even in our families, the
decision making will be a sweet exercise!
THE OX KNOWS ITS OWNER AND
THE DONKEY ITS MASTER’S CRIB;
BUT ISRAEL DOES NOT KNOW,
MY PEOPLE DO NOT CONSIDER.
( ISAIAH 1 : 3).
Even when a windstorm came down, HE slept;
Even when the waves beat into the boat, HE slept;
Even when the boat was already filling, HE slept;
Even when the disciples were in jeopardy, HE slept;
The Savior sleeping?
Difficult to accept; Difficult to understand;
But we have to accept the basic facts!
Whether you are a disciple or not, sometimes you may
have to face the storms in your life.
Whether you are in the will of GOD, like Paul, or away
from the will of GOD, like Jonah, in your journey storms
The political storm, the economical storm, the relational
storm, the cultural storm and the natural storm threaten
a believer and an unbeliever in the same way.
Till this world passes away, till the new earth comes, the
naturally occurring things will be there.
Then, in what way our faith and HIS presence matter?
Dear friend, read that portion carefully!
First of all, JESUS only initiated that journey!.
Not just HE initiated, HE also clearly stated the destination
of the journey; to the other side of the lake!.
In addition, He assured His presence ‘ Let us go to ‘!.
In fact, by the way HE slept, HE indirectly illustrates the
way a person of faith, moving in the will of GOD with the
assurance of HIS presence is expected to behave!
If HE is sleeping, it simply means that HIS intervention
is not at all needed to reach the destination.
What HE told will surely come to pass!
HIS spoken WORD and HIS Presence,
No storm has the power to stop them!
Remember, if it is a real danger, even if you are not calling
HIM, HE will swiftly come and gather you under HIS wings!
But our problem is actually because of our assumptions!
We assume, every storm is here to destroy us;
We assume, silence of GOD as absence of GOD;
We assume, Heavenly promises can be disturbed by
the earthly storms;
We assume, calming the storms is more important than
using the storms to declare and grow in faith;
See JESUS’ response!
He never asked ‘ How could the storm come?’ or
appreciated ‘Thanks, in the right time you cried, we
all escaped’ or even consoled ‘it won’t happen again’!
But HE certified them ‘men of little faith’ and questioned
them ‘where is your faith?’.
Facing a storm?
Fear not; Check who initiated your project; Check HIS
promises about your project; Check HIS presence in
your project; yes, whatever may be your project!
If GOD is silent in your storm, understand, this is a minor
storm and won’t have any impact; just relax in HIM!
Remember, your SAVIOR is IMMANUEL too.
FOR HE SPOKE, AND IT WAS DONE,
HE COMMANDED, AND IT STOOD FAST.
(PSALM 33 : 9 )
A signboard was fastened to the cross above JESUS head;
As ordered by Pilate; announcing the charge against JESUS.
Content? ‘JESUS OF NAZARETH, KING OF JEWS’
Pilate ordered it, ok, but who fastened it?
Naturally a soldier, may be more than one!
But, was that not a chance given to those soldiers to
go a little closer to JESUS?
Was that not an unique assignment?
Taking the signboard and taking it near and above the
head of The SUFFERING SERVANT and fastening it!
Many soldiers were there, but this group had a chance
to see the blood, the suffering, the thorn on the head,
the irregular last minute breathing, he blood covered,
blinded eyes and the agony of death on the cross in a
more clear way by going so close to HIM!
How they handled that? one more assignment; one
more signboard and one more death? Like a machine?
No impact or emotional disturbance?
Or some thing happened in their heart?
Whether that close encounter embedded the seed of
faith for their future transformation?
We don’t know, but
At least in this Holy week. are you not getting a chance
to go a little closer to The SUFFERING SERVANT?
Is it not an unique opportunity?
Hearing the verses and meditations about JESUS and
his sufferings, the last seven words of JESUS, little
extra time in the church, the cross and the blood!
How do you handle it?
One more year; one more passion week;
One more devotion? Like a machine?
Just a tradition but no personal transformation?
No impact or conviction?
So close to the cross and the Savior, but
no personal revival?
So close; so what?
Have you allowed that soul cleansing blood to
wash you and transform you?
Have you acknowledged HIM as your KING by
surrendering your life to the authority of HIS WORD?
Whether this close encounter brought you actually
closer to your SAVIOR and MASTER?
Who knows? Only you and Your LORD!
So close; So what?
YOU HAVE COME TO JESUS, THE ONE WHO
MEDIATES THE NEW COVENANT BETWEEN
GOD AND PEOPLE, AND TO THE SPRINKLED
BLOOD, WHICH GRACIOUSLY FORGIVES
INSTEAD OF CRYING OUT FOR VENGEANCE
AS THE BLOOD OF ABEL DID (HEBREWS 12 : 24)