I came across a blog called Splintersufer’s Blog. The first article is, “Not another COG-survivor blog… Right?” Well, I suppose you can read it and make up your own mind about it.
The sad part of it all is how much abuse has occurred in various COG groups in the name of God. While I’m certain that some stories are examples of extreme sensitivity and/or are full of exaggerations (and, a few might be downright lies, for all I know), I have no doubt that some are at least mostly true. I don’t know the person that writes that blog or even who it is, but there have been similar stories about some of the ministers he writes about.
A minister and a church is supposed to be in service to God. When a minister stands and speaks, it is supposed to be the words of God. All is supposed to give glory to God and be done in the name of God.
What does it mean to use God’s name in vain? Simply, this means to misuse God’s name in any fashion. It is not just directed against cursing, though that is one way in which His name is dishonored by people and is used in vain. What are some ways people take God’s name in vain? There are many, but let us look at just a few.
The first way is when we profess God’s name but do not live answerably to it. It means we live hypocritically. Thomas Watson said, "pretended holiness is merely double wickedness." Whenever we do not live up to the call of the Christian life, we take God’s name in vain. We are mirrors that should reflect the perfection of God. If the mirror claims to be Christ’s and reflects tendencies of hell, then we use the name of Christ in vain, and people see that.
~ McMahon, Dr C Matthew. (n.d.). The Tract Series: Taking the Name of God in Vain. Retrieved from http://www.apuritansmind.com/tracts%20and%20writings/nameofgodinvain.htm.
I wonder if we’ve really gotten to the point yet where these words mean something in all of our day to day lives (including ministers, elders, deacons, lay people).