“…hallowed be your name…” Matt. 6:9, NIV
We approach “Our Father in Heaven” with the confidence of children going to a loving father as we have seen in previous articles.
Now we are looking at the next phrase. What does “hallowed” mean? Although the Greek word appears several times in the New Testament it is only translated “hallowed” in the two times the Lord’s prayer is given. Normally it is translated as “sanctify” and occasionally as “be holy.” It is a verb and means to set apart as holy, to be the opposite of “common.”
So when we are sanctifying God’s name we are setting it apart as holy. Even the word “holy” sometimes gives a negative impression because we are influenced by the world’s thoughts. The world thinks of “holy” as strict, no fun, judgmental, etc. As usual Satan has twisted things. To be holy is to be set apart, to be special, to be perfect and; therefore, to perfectly enjoy all good things.
When we pray for God’s Name to be sanctified, we are asking for His Name to be recognized as holy, as perfect in every way. We are focusing on the fact that in our God is no flaw whatsoever. He does not meet the standard, He IS the Standard. He can do no wrong. Sin is not something that tempts Him or that He can engage in. He is Holy.
Satan likes us to throw accusations at God - You’re not fair, That’s not right, Why did You let that happen, Don’t You see and care, Etc. When we pray “Hallowed be Your Name” we will avoid that temptation for we set our perfect God Who can do no wrong before our eyes.
And what is it that is hallowed or sanctified or holy? It is His Name. As I am sure most of you know, in Scripture a person’s name is not simply something to identify him or her. A person’s name is an revelation of their character. That’s why a person’s name could be changed as they changed.
God’s Name is a revelation of His character. His Name never changes because He never changes. What does happened though is that we learn additional Names of God which reveal aspects of His character that we did not know before. And each Name revelation is hallowed because each characteristic is perfect…without flaw.
As we begin our prayers we recognize that we are talking to our Father Who is God and Who is perfect in all that He Is and in all of His ways. What an awesome way to settle our oftentimes troubled minds as we come into His presence!