We can all testify that most of the wonders and signs we have seen have been performed in the Name of Jesus. We can all testify that not only signs and wonders were seen, but also miracles performed in the Name of Jesus. Some of us can testify about a family member who was healed following a prayer in the Name of Jesus, while others can testify about how they were met with the fullness of heaven after praying – in the Name of Jesus – for GOD to help them in their time of need. There are some who will even testify that they got free from a drug addiction through a prayer in Jesus’ Name.
What power lies in praying in the Name of Jesus that causes wonders and miracles to follow?
Let us look at the following example. Many of us, at one time or another, have had the unfortunate experience of being pulled over by a traffic officer due to speeding or some other traffic offense. The moment that the traffic officer appears from his hiding place, signalling us to stop, we regrettably put on the brakes and obey his command.
Why is this? Why do we stop when an officer signals us to stop? What power does he have to make us listen and obey? The answer is simple; the power does not come from the officer himself but from the authority that the officer carries. He performs his function on behalf of the highest authority of the country by enforcing its laws and commandments. He comes in the ‘name’ of the highest authority of the country (the President, in South Africa’s case). For all intents and purposes, when that traffic officer is signalling us to stop, it is as if the president himself is signalling us to stop.
Through this basic principle, we can understand what it means to pray in the Name or with the Name of Jesus. Yes, there is a difference in praying in the Name and with the Name. We never understood this principle and as a result, we were taught to pray with the Name of Jesus rather than in the Name of Jesus; we used the Name of Jesus as a ‘magic wand’. We believed that if we started or ended a sentence or prayer with the words “in the Name of Jesus” that it would seal the deal and be as good as done. If we are honest with ourselves, we know that this is the truth and that we misused it. For where the right use is not clear, misuse is inevitable.
This is not what GOD intended with regards to praying in the Name. You may ask what then does it mean when Jesus says, “If you ask anything in My name, I will do it”? When we refer to the Name we should not look at the physical name but rather at what that Name represents. This is the difference between with the Name and in the Name.
Let us look at the words of Jesus Christ.
John 5:43 (NKJV)
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.
The Name and authority that Jesus Christ was using was the Name and authority of his FATHER, GOD. When Jesus is saying ‘whatever you ask in my Name’, He is referring to the Name and authority that he is walking in, the Name and authority he was sent in – the Name of the FATHER.
When a child is born, whose name does that child carry? The father’s name. When a bride gets married to her husband, whose name does she carry? The name of her husband (who in turn also carries the name of his father). She receives the sir’s name, hence the term ‘surname’. When she swipes her credit card, what name is written on the card? In what name does she swipe the credit card? In the sir’s name.
According to the Bible, you receive a name either by birth or by marriage.
This is the example Jesus Christ was for us. For he too was a Son and Wife of GOD and received the FATHER’s Name. Jesus Christ was born from above, at the Jordan river. At that moment his father and mother were no longer Joseph and Mary; he did not carry their name anymore. From thereon his FATHER was GOD and he carried the Name of GOD. He no longer walked in his own authority or name. From thereon he walked in the Name and authority of GOD.
I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me…
Let us look at the example of a trust for further explanation; say there is a trust that belongs to the ‘Muller’ family name. If your surname is Muller, you would have access to this trust. If you want to access this trust, you need the name ‘Muller’. If you do not have the name Muller, you need to ask, ‘in the name of a Muller’.
This is what happened with Jesus Christ. He was the first one born of GOD, carrying the FATHER’s Name. The ‘Family Trust’, the heavens and all its provisions belonged to Jesus Christ; he had access to it because he carried the Name of the FATHER. He was an heir. While Jesus Christ was on earth, nobody could access this ‘Family Trust’ except through the Name of Jesus Christ, as he was the only one who carried the Name of the FATHER. If you wanted to access the provision of the ‘trust’ you had to ask in the Name of Jesus Christ, for you did not have the Name yet. If you needed healing or provision and you went to the ‘trust’ you would not receive it; it is for that reason that Jesus Christ said we should ask in his Name, for he was an heir of that ‘trust’.
This is why Jesus says it is to our advantage for him to go away. He will make it possible for us to carry the same Name. We will also be born of GOD and take the SIR’s Name, the Family Name, the Name of the FATHER.
He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine [The Name of GOD] and declare it to you [belonging to the Family Name]. (15) All things that the Father has are Mine [because he carried the Name of the FATHER]. Therefore, I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you [the Family Trust, inheritance, will belong to us also].
Because of the work GOD did through Jesus Christ we carry the Name of GOD also. Jesus even says there will come a day where you will want to ask in his Name and he will say that it is not necessary for you to ask in his Name, for you carry the same Name also. Ask in your own Name (which is the Name of the FATHER), the trust belongs to you also. You are an heir to the inheritance.
In that day you will ask in My name, and I do not say to you that I shall pray the Father for you; (27) for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God.
You may ask, but what about the scripture in Philippians 2 where the Word teaches us that GOD has given Jesus the Name above all names and that at the Name of Jesus every knee will bow.
Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, (10) that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth.
GOD gave Jesus the Name which is above all names. This means that he did not have ‘the Name’ yet. This is not the name ‘Jesus’, for he had this name at birth. Jesus received GOD’s Name, for this is the Name above all names. This is the same Name which we receive and thus we bow our knee to the FATHER, not to Jesus Christ.
For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, (15) from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named.
Therefore, Jesus Christ calls us his brothers, for we carry the same Family Name.
Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.’ “
Philippians 2 carries on saying, “at the name of Jesus”. Note that it says at the Name and not with the Name – for the authority does not lie in recalling the name ‘Jesus’, but rather in the authority of the Name which Jesus carried.
In Acts 19 we find a passage where it is written of the sons of Sceva who prayed with the Name of Jesus and not in the Name. They tried to use the name Jesus as a ‘magic wand’. Needless to say, they got a beating.
The name ‘Jesus’ was not the authority and power. It is the Name in which Jesus operated that had the authority and power. He moved in the Name and authority of the FATHER.
Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.
Today, because of the work of Jesus Christ, we also carry that Name and can ask the FATHER in our own Name, which is the Family Name.