Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter
(Acts 20:28-38; John 17:11b-19)
In the computer world we protect information with a password. One should create passwords that would be difficult to guess and should take care never to reveal them. As many people have unfortunately learned, failing to give passwords proper regard may result in swindle. Today’s gospel indicates that a name in biblical times today has similar import to a password today.
Jesus tells his Father that he has protected his disciples in the Father’s name. He means that he has called upon the Father by name to keep them safe. Jesus will also use his Father’s name, “I AM,” to give his disciples safe passage when the Roman garrison comes to arrest him in the garden. “I AM” is a simplified translation of the Tetragrammaton or four consonants expressing the name for Himself that God revealed to Moses in the book of Exodus. In John’s gospel Jesus uses it repeatedly to express his identity with the Father.
We should use God’s name frequently but reverently. That is, we should call upon God as “Father” or “Lord” to ask His assistance. When we feel tempted to think or do something malicious, calling upon God by name will assure the help we need.