“You have not denied my name,” says Jesus to the angel in Pergamum.
To hold fast to Jesus’ name is to deny some other names.
Jesus means, “God is Salvation,” which means “we are not salvation,” but we are “the saved.”
“To the one who conquers, I will give a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.” When you read that name, you will be utterly at home with yourself. You will exclaim, “Oh Lord thank you for making me, me. I cannot imagine a better me!” But for now, you don’t know that name, not your full name. But you do know Jesus’ name.
Don’t let the world name you. Don’t let the Church name you. They don’t know your name.
Don’t even let you name you.
The moment you try to be yourself, it just reveals that you’re not yourself. And how could you be yourself, when you don’t even know who or what your good self actually is?
Don’t try to make a name for yourself.
But you can begin to receive the name that God has for you.
You must lose your self, for Christ’s Self, to find your self.
Peter the rock, John the beloved, and Jacob Israel all conquered by being conquered by the Grace of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. They conquered by Grace through faith.
Any name that doesn’t fit on the resurrected Jesus is a name that doesn’t fit on you. And your new name is the Life of Jesus rising in you. It’s the shape of faith uniquely manifest in the vessel that is you.
Right now, you don’t need to know your entire name.
You only need to know Jesus’ name and trust that He is revealing your name in time. That’s why He made time . . . so you will exclaim “Praise God for who I am and who I Am is.”
*Discussion Questions are available for this sermon here: Discussion Questions “Pergamum and Your Name”