A Long List of Names

I always struggle to read through the long lists of names we find in the Bible

Nehemiah 12:1-47

Reference: v.8 The Levites were Jeshua, Binnui, Kadmiel, Sherebiah, Judah, and also Mattaniah, who, together with his associates, was in charge of the songs of thanksgiving. (TNIV Bible)

Explore:  As children, our parents would tuck us into bed each night and say a prayer with us.  They allowed us to recite the same prayer each night, where we would list all of our relatives.  Thankfully, our extended family was a lot smaller back then, as it would probably take all night to list everyone these days.  But each night we would start our prayer, “Dear God, please bless Mummy, Daddy, Granny, Opoe, Kerry, Freddy, Heather, Ronald, Ricky, Julie…” Now, when you read through this list it is just a random group of names. However, when I read through this list, I remember a real person who has been a part of my life for a very long time.

Application: I always struggle to read through the long lists of names we find in the Bible – probably just like you were glad I only listed a couple of names of my relatives!  To us, the Bible names are just random people, most of whom we can’t even pronounce their names.  And yet, they all had a purpose and a reason for being listed in our Word. To God, these people were significant.  They may mean very little to us now, but when God hears their names, they are his loved children.  It’s the same with us today, we may just feel like a number, one bleep in history, one birth certificate in the files, but to God we are truly significant. He calls each one of His child and He loves us unconditionally.  You are not just a random name in a long list of people in history, you are loved and considered special by our awesome God.

Prayer: Lord God, thank you for loving each one of us. Thank you for being such a personal God that you know each of us by name. Amen.

Remind yourself about how special you are to God.

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This article was written by Linda Bailey

Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.