What’s in a Name?

Read: Hosea 1:6-10

Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be like the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured or numbered. And in the place where it was said to them, “You are not my people,” it shall be said to them, “Children of the living God.” (v. 10)

Did you know there is a book that lists over 100,000 possible names you could give your baby? Parents take great care in selecting the perfect name for their child. It can feel like a weighty decision that will represent who they are and who they hope their children will be. A name is how a person is identified throughout their life.

In biblical times, names were of even greater significance than today. In our passage today, God takes the object lesson of Hosea’s life with Gomer, his unfaithful wife, even further. God tells Hosea to give his children names that meant “No Mercy” and “Not My People.” Through these names, it is clear that the fruit born from our spiritual unfaithfulness is repugnant to God. But thankfully this is not the end of the story. God promises forgiveness, redemption, and restoration. In fact, God says that in the very same place that he named the children of Israel, “You are not my people,” he will rename them, “Children of the living God.” Through Jesus Christ, they would go from rejected completely to God’s own children!

Do you know the meaning behind the name that you were given at birth? What does it mean to you that God’s name for you is child of the living God? —Kelly Slaybaugh

As you pray, thank God for naming you and claiming you as his own through Jesus Christ.

About the Author

Kelly Slaybaugh lives in Wake Forest, North Carolina, is a student at Asbury Theological Seminary, and an “empty nester.” She loves connecting with God through nature and outdoor activities.


I Am