Thursday, December 19, 2019

Is Your Name Mud?

"A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, loving favor rather than silver and gold."
Proverbs 22:1 (NKJV)

There is a phrase in English, "Your name is mud", that is used to describe someone who is foolish.  The source of this phrase goes back several centuries, and while it may take different forms in different places, the idea of someone having a name associated with a bad reputation is not uncommon.  Someone's name is not just a collection of letters, a name is what we use to identify a person and if a person has a bad name, a bad reputation, we connect the name with the reputation.

As Christians, we do not live our life for the approval of others.  Even if no one likes what we do or say, if we are living a life based on biblical principles then we are pleasing to our heavenly Father and that is really all that matters.  But it is interesting to see how often the Bible refers to the importance of a good name, a good reputation.  Paul told Timothy that a bishop should have a good reputation with those outside of the Church (1 Timothy 3:7) while Acts 16:2 and 3 John 1:12 refer to people who had good reputations.

We see in Acts 6 that one of the requirements for people serving others was that they have a good reputation; without a good reputation they would not even have been chosen.  Do we have a good name, a good reputation, with others, or is our name "mud"?  The Bible never says that someone is qualified for something if they have a lot of money or talent, but it does emphasize having a good reputation.  Having a good name and reputation is important, because when we do we will have opportunities and access to people that we would not have had otherwise.

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