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By Doug Hazen

I love the Shema.  It’s the blessing that Moses commanded the Levites to speak over the people of Israel.  And because it is SO personal, it is the primary blessing I use to bless people.

“The Lord bless you
    and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine on you
    and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face toward you
    and give you peace.”

Numbers 6:24-26

The personal nature of God blessing or increasing me and keeping or protecting me is incredible.  And the fact that he would make his face to shine on me recalls a Bible school professor who described running back and forth on the beach one night with a full moon above.  No matter where he turned, the moon always was fully on and before him. I especially like the idea of God turning his face toward me and giving me shalom or completeness in him.  Man, that is powerful!

I’ve read and quoted that prayer many times.  But as I read again through the book of Numbers and once again read the Shema, my eye dropped to the next verse, 27.

“So they will put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.”

WHAT?  The job of the Levites was to pray the prayer over the people of God, and in so doing, they would “put my name” on them?!  As I reflected on that, I pondered the serious blessing of “wearing” or displaying God’s name.  It’s almost like putting on a nametag with HIS name rather than my own.  As I reflected on this, other passages of scripture came to mind with the same thought.

“Some will say, ‘I belong to the Lord’;
    others will call themselves by the name of Jacob;
still others will write on their hand, ‘The Lord’s…”

Isaiah 44:5


“I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, 

which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on them my new name.”

Revelation 3:12

I was so impressed with this that, during a couple of prayer times, I had our WorldVenture Mobilization Staff and a prayer group at my church write a name of God significant to them on a sticky name tag and wear it.  Names like “Protector”, “Ever Present”, “Rescuer”, “Healer” and others popped up around the room.  God’s name was on us.  So were their grateful smiles.  Prayers of worship came easy.

Think of it!  You bear his name.  That is an unbelievable blessing!

Feel free to share your thoughts on this article in the comments. 

Join the discussion 6 Comments

  • Beckie Johnson says:

    Thank you for this. The name I would choose today to wear on my forehead would be “healer”. A very good reminder of whose I am, and who He is.

  • WorldVenture says:

    Hi Beckie,

    So glad you enjoyed it and were helped by it. – NH

  • Linda Orbison says:

    The blessing you quote from deuteronemy is the Shema (hear or listen) but you then quote the Aaronic blessing that God told Moses to have Arron speak over the people from numbers 6.
    I found this a bit confusing
    Both are beautiful

    Ty for your article

  • Sandra CW says:

    Thanks for this article.

    How the disciples baptised:
    The Jews
    ‘Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Then Peter said unto them, “Repent, and be baptised every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. Praising God, and having favour with all the people.” And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved. Acts 2:37-39

    The Samaritans
    “But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptised, both men and women. Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: (for as yet He was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptised in the NAME of the Lord Jesus.) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.” Acts 8:12, 14-17.

    The Gentile Believers
    “To Him give all the prophets witness, that through His name whosoever believes in Him shall receive remission of sins.” While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter, “Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptised, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?” And he commanded them to be baptised in the NAME of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.
    Acts 10:43-48

    The Jews, the Samaritans and the Gentiles represent the whole human race! Baptism in Jesus name is invoking God’s revealed name on us. It even happened to Paul

    Paul testified of his baptism by Anianias who had said:
    “And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptised, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.” Acts 22:16

  • Nikole Hahn says:

    Thank you, Sandra for your thoughts.

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