In many cultures, a person receives their name from the child’s father. We can see how this was so from two stories from history. From scripture, we can learn that both John the Baptist and Jesus received their names and their identities from their Father. In the case of John the Baptist, 8 days after he was born, the family had the customary Bris in which little baby John was to be circumcised. It was customary for the child to be named at that time, however, Zechariah, John’s father, was mute. During this gathering of the extended family (given that Zechariah was a High Priest it would indicate there were many people attending this event), a name must be given to the child. Elizabeth, his mother, said his name was John, but all the people attending would not accept the mother naming her child; it had to the father. Therefore, a slate was given to Zechariah, the baby’s father and he wrote the name John. Immediately, he was able to speak and he spoke with his words the name “John” and that was how it was done.
A second story was when Jesus asked his disciples who do you say I am? They replied some say Jeremiah, some say Elijah, and some even say John the Baptist (he must have been beheaded by that time). Jesus responded and said I didn’t ask you what others were saying about me. I asked who do you say I am. Right then, Simon Peter perks up and says definitively: You are the Christ (Anointed One) the Son of the Living God. Jesus looks at Peter and says to him: “Blessed are you Simon Barjona for flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but my Father in Heaven.”
So, here are just two examples of how God works. Natural fathers and ultimately God the Father is the source of where we understand our names and who we are. An understanding of who we are would not be complete without an understanding of our identity, calling and destiny. Who better to give that knowledge than the Creator Himself?
Before you leave this earth it might be helpful to know who you are, your calling and destiny. When you leave this earth you will be asked the ultimate question “Who do you say that I am?” Perhaps it would be wise to be prepared to give a good answer to that question. I will give you a hint: your Daddy knows the answer. Who’s your Daddy?