Christmas

David's Line

This devotional is written by Josh Anderson.

Jeremiah 33:14

14 He says, 'I will build myself a great palace
    with spacious upper rooms.'
So he makes large windows in it,
    panels it with cedar
    and decorates it in red.
15 "Does it make you a king
    to have more and more cedar?
Did not your father have food and drink?
    He did what was right and just,
    so all went well with him.
16 He defended the cause of the poor and needy,
    and so all went well.
Is that not what it means to know me?"
    declares the Lord.

Reflection

There is a huge significance attached to names in the Bible – a name informs us of a person's identity. Perhaps the parents' struggle with the birth of a new child. Or a defining characteristic of a person in a parable. Or maybe a relevance to their tribe, family or place of birth.

This passage is all about the days of the arrival of the redeemer of Israel drawing nearer.  

Through this person will flow all good things, the restoration of justice and safety throughout the land for God's people.

Judah refers to the tribe of people (i.e. God's chosen people) – they are to be given a new name. And as we go through the narrative of the Bible, we also join in the story: God's people is expanded from the Jews to all corners of the earth. So now we are a part of these people. Our name is "The Lord Our Righteous Saviour". What does this mean to you?

Again, the significance of a new name (think Abram/Abraham or Ben-oni/Benjamin) indicates a shift in identity. Perhaps a shift in how we see ourselves? Or a shift in purpose or calling? A new start with a new central focus?

What does it mean to have a new name? How does this affect your day to day life?

This time of year is the celebration of the fulfilment of the good promises made by God to His people. Christmas is the start of God's ultimate redemption plan. What new names has God given to you as he works out his redemption plan in your life?

Take some time to reflect on how God's redeeming power has touched your life. Be filled with thankfulness for what he's done. Ask God to open your eyes to the new names he's giving those around you, and call them out as you see them.

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