July 1, 2022 | By Jay Ashbaucher
The Lord Jesus taught those who follow him to pray these words, “Hallowed be Your name”. What does Hallowed be Your name mean? The following quote is from CompellingTruth.org: “The phrase “hallowed be thy name” is meant to remind us that God is perfect, pure, holy, and worthy of all praise and honor. It is a way to echo the angels in heaven who declare, “Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen” (Revelation 7:12). However, not only was Jesus declaring that God’s name is holy, He was also asking that God actively “hallow” His own name, making it set apart and venerated. In this request, Jesus is asking that God visibly demonstrate His glory in order to increase His renown… Asking God to “hallow” His name is another way of asking that God would draw people to Himself by demonstrating His glory and power in the world.” (end of quote)
Hallowed means to make holy, to separate or set apart from ordinary common things. Jesus taught His followers to pray that God the Father would “hallow” His name. In what way is His name to be set apart or made holy? Albert Mohler, in his book, “The Prayer That Turns the World Upside Down: The Lord’s Prayer as a Manifest for Revolution”, explains it this way: “When Jesus petitions God to hallow his name, he is asking that God act in such a way that he visibly demonstrates his holiness and his glory”
When Jesus prayed this, God hallowed His name through Jesus in at least three ways: (1) by Jesus being made as a human in God’s image, Jesus was the visible presence of the invisible God (Col. 1:15; Heb. 1:3), (2) by Jesus showing us God’s character (Phil. 2:6-11), and (3) by Jesus doing God’s work in the world (John 14:8-11).
By praying this, we worship God, but we are also asking God to do something. We are asking Him to make His name known so people can see who He is and what He is like. God wants people to see His glory, to see that He is not like any other god. God wants people to so be drawn to Him that they will want Him to be their God. He wants to make his name known so people will humble themselves in His presence and believe in Him and be loved and saved by Him.
When we, as Jesus’ followers, pray for God to hallow His name, we are asking him to do it through us. (1) He does it by re-creating us into the image of God, by making us into a new creation in Christ Jesus (2 Cor 5:7), by making us to be like Jesus (Rom. 8:28-29). (2) God hallows his name through us when we show what God’s character is like in our daily living (Phil. 2:3-5; 1 Peter 2:9-12). (3) God hallows his name through us when we do God’s good works (John 14:12-14; Ephesians 2:10). When we pray, “Hallowed be your name”, we are asking God to make his name be known and glorified through us (1 Cor. 10:31). God wants people to know Him. Hallowed be your name means that God wants to reveal the various meanings of his name through us. As the exact representation of who God is, Jesus is the perfect example of Hallowing God’s name. Jesus said, “He who has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). God was glorified through Jesus’ words and the miraculous actions that Jesus allowed God to do through him. “Hallowed be your name” is a prayer that is also asking God to be glorified through our lives so people can see who God is and what God can do. God wants his name to be known. Why?
God desires for all people to be saved (1 Tim. 2:3-4). Saved from what? Saved from our own wickedness and sinfulness that is destroying our lives and the lives of others. Saved from an evil world that is corrupting all things, a world where everything is dying. Saved to what? To a new life of love, and joy, and peace, and righteousness, and no more death. Such a world exists only in God’s kingdom, which is made up of his people who will one day be living under a new heaven and on a new earth. God’s kind of life is an eternal life in a world without end.
God does many things for the sake of His name becoming known. That is why the Bible tells us things like, “He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake” (Psalm 23:3). God’s action of hallowing His name happens by the way He guides us. Closely tied to God’s name is His character, His integrity, His reputation, His holiness, His glory. To profane God’s name is to live in such a way as to not make His name hallowed. Consider these scriptures: (Isaiah 48:9–11; Ezekiel 36:22-27). When we pray “Hallowed be your name”, we are praying that we will not profane his name and spoil his reputation by attitudes, words, and actions that do not display who God is and what he is like. A Godly life that glorifies him is our prayer, that with his help, his name will be hallowed, that is, will be set apart as holy and properly displayed in our daily life.
Conclusion: When we realize what praying “hallowed be your name” means and does, when we see the role we are playing in bringing God’s name and God’s redemption to the people of this world, we will want to keep praying it as often as we can. We will want to glorify God and make his name known in every aspect of our lives – in our family, our work, our communities, our fun times, our health concerns, and even in our sufferings (James 1:2-4). The realization of what this prayer means will bring great joy into our heart, will give us an exciting purpose, and will motivate us to remain faithful in living for our God.