” I, the LORD, have called You in righteousness,
And will hold Your hand;
I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people,
As a light to the Gentiles,
To open blind eyes,
To bring out prisoners from the prison,
Those who sit in darkness from the prison house.
I am the LORD, that is My name;
And My glory I will not give to another,
Nor My praise to carved images.
Behold, the former things have come to pass,
And new things I declare;
Before they spring forth I tell you of them.” ~Is. 42:6-9
What colossal power is in these words from the Lord. Isaiah has the privilege of eavesdropping on a conversation between the Father and His Son, where God outlined both His identity and His purpose. Who was it who called Jesus in righteousness (here, tsedeq, also meaning “justice”)? Who strengthened His hand and encouraged Him as He walked the earth? Who guarded Him and hid Him in secret until His time had come? Who but the Lord, Jehovah, “the existing one” could have done all of this?
God was giving more than just His name in this passage. He gave His glory as well. “Jehovah” is the name He gave when He cut covenant with Moses and called him to lead His people from slavery to Pharaoh. Moses used this name throughout the Pentateuch in describing the mighty, creative power of the Lord. He is the existing one–I AM–who transcends time; and He stakes His reputation on that name.
“For the LORD will not forsake His people, for His great name’s sake…” ~2 Sam. 12:22
“He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.” ~Ps. 23:3
“Nevertheless He saved them for His name’s sake,That He might make His mighty power known.” ~Ps. 106:8
“For My own sake, for My own sake, I will do it;For how should My name be profaned? And I will not give My glory to another.” ~Is. 48:11
Perhaps it would be wise of us to begin realizing that God’s mercy and protection toward us are as much to do with His own reputation as I AM as our own worth in His sight. Perhaps we would begin to see more of our prayers answered in miraculous healings if we understood what Jesus knew: that God acts for the glory of His own Name, and the glory of His Son, Jesus. Jesus prayed, “Father, glorify Your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, saying, “I have both glorified it and will glorify it again.” (Jn. 12:28) He also said, “And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” (Jn. 14:13)
One day the Church will put down her programs and politics and live to glorify I AM. One day we will not have a place for men who use their pulpits to make a name for themselves, because there will only be one Name worth knowing and worth glorifying. One day we will finally see Him for who He is, and live for the glory of His name over our own.