Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations. Jeremiah 1:5
What’s in a name?
In the bible, I know of 5 instances where God changed names: Abraham, Sarah, Jacob, Peter and Paul. I experienced my first experience with identity change, during a Jacob experience. God had me fight for my new identity in Him, to stand my ground as a converted Christian not just a professing Christian. Last night I meditated on God’ NEXT. And while in prayer God ministered to me about the church knowing it’s identity and not simply attending church. He reminded me of my study of Genesis 17, and led me to discuss the context of this chapter with one of my brothers in Christ. God needed to tell Abraham and Sarah that there was more in the NEXT.
- the fact of being who or what a person or thing is.name, ID;
- a close similarity or affinity
The Lord then went on and reminded Abraham of the promises He had made in the past. God came to Abraham to clarify that the promised child would come from Sarah and Abraham, not Abraham and someone else. Remember, they had already had Ishmael, the son of the Egyptian mistress Hagar. God doesn’t change promises, He simply elaborates and clarifies. And if there happens to be any doubt, confusion or stagnation in our lives, He will come to rattle our nest. God certainly has interesting ways of letting us know, that we have a new mission set for us right around the corner.
Quite possibly Abraham was in a stagnant place and needed some clarification or fresh reminder from God, that the promise was still valid. God came to Abraham and changed His name, and because God ordained that husband and wife are one flesh, He also changed Sarah’s name. I personally identify with them, because they were called of God, they had heard God’s voice; they communed with Him and even received promises, but there was more. They had known themselves from process to process, quite possibly developed and settled with a self image which needed change. God was ready to take them higher, but they needed to know a greater version of themselves to walk into God’s ordained destiny.
Abram: “high father”
- Abraham: “father of a multitudes” (Genesis 17:5)
Sarai: “my princess”
- Sarah: “mother of nations” (Genesis 17:15–16)
With Jacob, it was a bit different because He had to fight God himself. When I experience this in my life, I understood that God wanted to see how fastened to Him I was. And similar to Jacob, He told the angel: “I will not let you go, until you bless me!. God is moved by faith, and identity is certainly a glorious victory worth fighting for.
Jacob: “Supplanter, to trip up or to overthrow”
- Israel: having power with God (Genesis 32:28)
Declaration: Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life. Favor and peace surround me, as God brings directly to be supernatural and appointed connections for my life today. No enemy, no device or tactic of the enemy will succeed today against these divine appointments. Joy and victory is ours, and instant connection of souls in Jesus name. I declare that God’s promises are Yes and Amen! That the kingdom of God has suffered violence, and those who attack it have done it by force, and I to will fight back for my identity and my destiny. The LORD is faithful me, as I obey the voice of His Spirit and the demands of our covenant.
Lord God, creator and giver of life, I thank you for your mercy and calling. I thank you for not giving up on us. I thank you for your patience, even remembering Ishmael, and how you still blessed the mistakes Sarah and Abraham committed. Thank you for blessing our mistakes, and giving us fresh starts with you. Thank you, for giving us your design, and your love which sustains us. I pray for those people who may feel bored with life in any area, whether it’s in relationships, work, location or spiritually. I pray THEY RECEIVE revelation of your will in each specific area, and also a paradigm shift to receive the increase you have in life for them. In Jesus name, Amen.