In Jesus' Name

by: Bill Bratt


Most of us at times in our prayers pray the model prayer that Jesus gave to His disciples when they ask Him to teach them to pray. This outline prayer is commonly called the Lordís prayer (Matthew 6:9-13). This "model prayer" is an outline or pattern that He gave to His disciples as a teaching tool for them to learn how to pray. (Request our free feature article: "Lord, Teach us to Pray" to learn more on how to pray and meditate upon the seven points given in Jesusí model prayer outline.)

In Jesusí Name

When we are praying and ready to finish our prayer, we say "In Jesusí Name." Jesus did not tell His disciples at the time when He gave them the model prayer, but later, He did instruct them to do so: {12} "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. {13} "And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. {14} "If you ask anything in My name, I will do it" (John 14:13-14).

Whatís in a name?

You may hear some people call Jesus by the Hebrew name "Yeshua." A person does not have to speak the names of God and Jesus in Hebrew. Hebrew is not a sacred language. There is no where in the scriptures indicating that we need to do this. The New Testament was written in the Greek language. God is not linguistically challenged. When a person prays in English, French, Spanish, German or Italian God knows to whom you are praying when you call out to Him or to His Son Jesus Christ. God knows what we mean.

Letís look at two definitions in Websterís Dictionary under the word: "name": (1) "a word or phrase that constitutes the distinctive designation of a person or thing .." (2) - in the name of: "by authority of, open in the name of the law."

Regarding definition number one, most people know the name Jesus Christ. People know this distinctive name and that it designates the Son of God as the divine being who came to the earth, dwelt and tabernacled in the flesh among men, lived a perfect life and died for all of humanity (John 1:1-3, 14, 3:16; Rom. 5:8).

When we finish our prayers and we say: In Jesusí Name, we would be applying the second definition of Websterís Dictionary. In essence we are saying" "by the authority of Jesus Christ."

Like the phrase used in the dictionary, the law enforcing agencies have the power and authority (as long as they have a search warrant) to enter your premises. They may bang on your door and say: "Open up in the name of the law". They have the authority and power of enforcement.

When you ask in Jesusí name, you are using His power and authority so that God will notice and take action.

Now hereís a warning. You need to be careful in using Jesusí name. Why? You donít want to break the third commandment: ""You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain" (Exo 20:7) .

If you ask in Jesusí name, it must be according to Jesusí will and purpose. We must not ask amiss, or in a wrong or faulty manner: "You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures" (James 4:3).

Jesusí Example in Doing Godís Will

The night before Jesus was crucified He was with His disciples. He knew that His crucifixion would happen soon and he was sorrowful and deeply distressed. "Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to the disciples, "Sit here while I go and pray over there." {37} And He took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and He began to be sorrowful and deeply distressed. {38} Then He said to them, "My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch with Me." {39} He went a little farther and fell on His face, and prayed, saying, "O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will." {40} Then He came to the disciples and found them asleep, and said to Peter, "What? Could you not watch with Me one hour? {41} "Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak." {42} Again, a second time, He went away and prayed, saying, "O My Father, if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done"" (Mat 26:36-42).

When Jesus first prayed, He was hoping that God could work out another solution for the salvation of man besides the horrible way for Him to die through the crucifixion, but He realized that it had to be done Godís way. Jesus said "Your will be done."

Jesus realized that God the Father knew what was best.

We need to read and study Godís word to know His will.

Jesus was an Ambassador for God

The apostle John records Jesus as saying: ""I have come in My Father's name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, him you will receive" (John 5:43) .

Jesus came in the name of God the Father. He was an ambassador for God and the Kingdom of God. God the Father trusted Jesus to do the work that He was supposed to do.

In being an ambassador for God, notice how Jesus followed the Fatherís example: "I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me" (John 5:30).

Jesus was humble and submissive to the will of His Father. Jesus did what He was taught from His Father: "Then Jesus said to them, "When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and that I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things" (John 8:28).

Jesus did the work that God instructed Him to do. Jesus came to the earth, dwelt and tabernacled in the flesh among men, lived a perfect life, preached the gospel of the Kingdom of God, He preached the truth of God, healed the sick, cast out demons, did many other miracles, signs and wonders, and then He did the most important thing that God had requested Him to do, He died for all of humanity. He gave up His life for you and me (John 1:1-3, 14, 3:16; Rom. 5:8).

On the night of Jesusí last Passover, He was with His disciples and they had finished the footwashing and partaken of the bread and wine. Jesus then began talking to His disciples which was a lengthy discourse recorded in John chapters 14 through 17. In chapter 17 Jesus began praying. This was the real Lordís prayer. Jesus prayed for His disciples and for Himself. Jesus prayed to God the Father and told Him that He had finished the work that the Father had given Him: "I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do" (John 17:4).

We are Ambassadors of Christ

The apostle Paul in his letter to the Church of Corinth states: "Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God" (2 Cor 5:20).

If the President of the United States of America made you the ambassador of France, you would be the official envoy; a diplomatic agent of the highest rank accredited to this foreign government. You would be the authorized representative of the United States in that country dedicated to doing the will of the President and the United States government. You would represent the values, standards, policies, and attitudes of the United States. You would be putting your best foot forward, setting the right example and letting your light shine so that the people in that foreign land would think highly of the United States and itís people. You would not go off on your own forming alliances or doing underhanded dealings that would violate the laws of the United States. You wouldnít dare violate the trust that the President put in you.

Now being an ambassador of Christ you donít want to violate the trust that Jesus has in you to properly use His name. You would want to comply with Jesusí will.

Trust is a very important character trait. Trust is when someone has confidence in you to do what you are supposed to do. Christ is trusting you to use His name in the right manner.

Trust also involves being truthful. If you bear false witness that would be breaking the ninth commandment.

Trust is when you ask Jesus to do something for you and you must be willing to do something for Him. What can you do for Jesus? You can keep His commandments. Jesus said: "If you love Me, keep My commandments" (John 14:15). ""If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love" (John 15:10).

Jesus had an abounding love for God the Father in whom He had a very close relationship throughout all eternity. He maintained that relationship while He lived on the earth in the flesh through drawing close to God through prayer, worship and meditation. Jesus was fulfilling the scriptures that James recorded later: "Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. {8} Draw near to God and He will draw near to you" (James 4:7-8).

Jesus let God live in Him as we are to let Jesus live in us. Letís notice Jesusí answer to Philip: "Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, 'Show us the Father'?" (John 14:9).

As ambassadors of Christ, we as Christians, must live our lives as Christ lived His life. Jesus was perfect in the sense that He did not sin. The writer of Hebrews was talking about Jesus being our High Priest and he stated: "For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin" (Heb 4:15).

We must let Jesus live in us and in doing so we must strive for perfection. Jesus is quoted by Matthew as saying: ""Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect" (Matthew 5:48).

A Christian must represent Jesus Christ and the values and standards of the Kingdom of God, of which Jesus will be the soon-coming King who will rule for a thousand years as King of kings and Lord of lords (Rev. 17:14). 

In Conclusion: Jesus Christ has given you the privilege of using His name, which next to the Fatherís name is the most important name in all of creation. "Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name" (Phil. 2:9).

Jesus has given you the approval to use His name in your prayers and He promises to answer your prayers: "If you ask anything in My name, I will do it" (John 14:14). Jesus will plead our case before God because He is our Intercessor (Heb. 7:25), Mediator (1 Tim. 2:5), Advocate (1 John 2:1) and High Priest (Heb. 4:14-16).

God will hear your prayers and will answer. He may answer with yes, no or maybe. God will listen and your prayers will not be ignored. It is a fantastic privilege to be able to use Jesusí name in your prayers. Use His name in a humble and responsible manner.

The apostle Paul admonished us: "whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him" (Col 3:17).