April 15, 2009
But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:11
When Alexander the Great died, his empire was divided up.
The country of Egypt was given to Ptolemy, a general, ruler, astronomer, and mathematician. Oh, he was also a lighthouse builder. Ptolemy's architect, Sostratus did such a good job at designing the lighthouse at Alexandria that it became one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.
Now, Sostratus' mom didn't raise no fool.
He knew this lighthouse was a big deal. Hoping he might be remembered, Sostratus wanted to have his name inscribed at the base. His boss, Ptolemy thought differently. Ptolemy wanted his name to be written down so he would get the credit.
Sostratus worked out a solution. In beautiful, eye-catching lettering, he ordered Ptolemy's name to be written in plaster. The craftsmanship was beautiful. What he didn't tell Ptolemy is that he, Sostratus, had his name cut deeply into the granite which was underneath the plaster. Sostratus knew the continuous lashing of the sea would eventually erode the plastered name of Ptolemy and expose the name of Sostratus.
This leads me to ask, "What Name is carved into your heart and soul?" There are two individuals who wish to claim you: the Savior, Jesus, and the charlatan, Satan.
Jesus has shown His love for you in giving Himself as the Substitute, the Sacrifice Who would win our forgiveness. By Christ's work believers are justified, made right with the Father. In spite of what Jesus has done, Satan still wishes to put his name on us and claim us as his own.
Through the washing of Baptism, through Spirit-given-and-maintained faith, the Name we ought be proud to bear is that of Jesus.
As St. Paul wrote to the church in Corinth: believers have been washed, they have been sanctified, justified in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.'
In short, when anyone looks at us, listens to us, they ought to say, "I see this person belongs to Jesus."
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, make my witness to the Savior's sacrifice a clear one. Let no one be confused. I have been saved by Jesus and am proud to bear His Name. This I ask in the Name of the crucified and risen Savior. Amen.
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Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries