Hallow the divine name
I want to teach you two Jewish terms: ‘Chillul HaShem’ which means ‘profaning the Divine Name’ and ‘Kiddush HaShem’ which means ‘Hallowing the Divine Name’.
Leviticus 22:1-2: “And God spoke to Moses, saying: Instruct Aaron and his sons to be scrupulous about the sacred donations that the Israelite people consecrate to Me, lest they profane My holy name, I am the LORD”
Leviticus 22:32-33: “You shall not profane My holy name, but I will be hallowed among the children of Israel. I am the LORD who sanctifies you, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: I am the LORD.”
“Ani Adonai” (“I Am the L-rd”) is repeated more than fifty times in the Book of Leviticus.
In the King James Version of the Bible G-d says, “Ani Adonai” one hundred and sixty three times.
The last of the Old Testament references of “Ani Adonai” (“I am the L-rd”) is found in Malachi 3:6: “For I am the L-rd, I change not”.
So, why is “Ani Adonai” repeated so many times in Leviticus and in the Old Testament?
When the Almighty says in the ‘Torah’ “Ani Adonai” (“I Am the L-rd”), He is giving a solemn warning that He is the Almighty and He will not tolerate unrighteousness from the Children of Israel. Neither will He tolerate the profaning of His Divine Name.
I have said many times that Christians are too quick to use G-d’s name, YHWH, without realising the awesomeness of His name.
YHWH is always and only translated and pronounced as ‘ADONAI’.
We read in Exodus 3:14: “And God said to Moses, “EHYEH ASHER EHYEH.” (I Am Who I Am.)”
‘EHYEH ASHER EHYEH’ is usually translated as “I am who I am”. However, one of the most respected of all the Rabbis, Rashi, translates this as: “I Will Be what I Will Be”
‘EHYEH ASHER EHYEH’ is a declaration of the unity of the Divine Nature of G-d. It denotes that G-d is the Everlasting G-d of faithfulness whose promises, even though they extend over centuries or millennia, are invariably fulfilled.
By giving His name, G-d was giving a guarantee of His faithfulness, His holiness and His sovereignty…and He was describing His character.
The Book of Leviticus warns against ‘Chillul HaShem’ (Profaning the Divine Name) and teaches us ‘Kiddush HaShem’ (Hallowing the Divine Name).
This is why the name of G-d is so sacred to Jewish people, and this is why Jewish people will not speak out His name but rather just use ‘HaShem’, as anything else outside the ‘Torah’ the ‘Tenach’ and the various ‘Siddurim’ (prayer books) is a profanation of His Divine Name.
And this is why as a Jew, I will never get used to the fact that some Christians use the English version of ‘ADONAI’ so glibly.
Now, we don’t only exercise ‘Chillul HaShem’ when we profane or blaspheme G-d’s name; and we don’t only exercise ‘Kiddush Ha’Shem’ when we hallow G-d’s name.
We hallow G-d’s Divine Name by the way we lead our lives and we profane G-d’s Divine Name by the way we lead our lives.
By blaming G-d and imputing to Him responsibility for things that are actually the result of evil, we exercise ‘Chillul HaShem’.
By dishonouring or cursing another person, we exercise ‘Chillul HaShem’.
Genesis 1:27 declares: “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”
It doesn’t say “So God created Jews and Christians in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”
Every man, every woman - despite the colour of their skin and their culture is made in the image of G-d. And this includes every Jew, every Gentile and every Muslim.
As Christians and representatives of the Most High G-d, by showing all mankind honour, respect and love, we are showing ‘Kiddush HaShem’ and we are hallowing G-d and His Divine Name.
Anything other than this is showing ‘Chillul HaShem’ and is profaning G-d and His Divine Name.
Also, operating in wilful persistent rebellion and unbelief and turning our backs on His clearly revealed will is insulting G-d and is profaning Him and His Divine Name.
So, how many in the church are showing ‘Chillul HaShem’ to Almighty G-d by insulting Him by turning their backs on His mandate to the church to:
• Give the gospel to the Jewish people or at least fervently and regularly pray for their salvation.
• Pray for the “peace of Jerusalem”.
• Comfort the Jewish people.
• Be watchmen for the Jewish people, Israel and Jerusalem.
• Publicly and boldly stand with Israel and Jerusalem.
By not doing this, the church is showing one of the worst kinds of ‘Chillul HaShem’ to Almighty G-d - rebellion.
Until we stop looking to this world and to our circumstances and look to G-d in faith, trust and obedience; until we operate in love and walk in forgiveness; and until we are openly exuberant for Almighty G-d, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we will be practicing ‘Chillul HaShem’ instead of ‘Kiddush HaShem’.
Allow me to encourage you:
Be exuberant for Almighty G-d and allow Him to lead you into His calling for your life.
Love Almighty G-d with all your heart, soul and mind and love your neighbour as yourself.
To the church I say: Give the gospel to the Jewish people or at least fervently and regularly pray for their salvation; pray for the “peace of Jerusalem”; comfort the Jewish people; be watchmen for the Jewish people, Israel and Jerusalem; and publicly and boldly stand with Israel and Jerusalem.
In doing this, you will be practicing ‘Kiddush HaShem’ and you will be hallowing Almighty G-d and His Divine Name.