The Holy Name of Jesus

Why do Catholics venerate and pray in the Holy Name of Jesus?

The authority and power given to the Holy Name of Jesus is seen in the Bible, Philippians chapter 2:10-11.

“ ... at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father”.

(IHS is taken from the first three letters of the Greek spelling of the Holy Name of Jesus. It is the symbol of His Holy Name.)

Why is it important to honour Jesus' Most Holy Name?

A promise was attached to those who honour his Holy Name when God said through the prophet Isaiah;

“Turn back to me, and win deliverance, all you that dwell in the remotest corners of the earth; I am God, there is no other. By my own honour I have sworn it, nor shall it echo in vain, this faithful promise I have made, that every knee shall bow before me, and every tongue swear by my name” (Isaiah 45:22-24).

This request was made hundreds of years ago by God explaining the power of His Holy Name and the ONE who will be sent in the name of Jesus.

The power and authority of the Holy Name of Jesus was further proved during the passion of Jesus in the garden.

So Judas got a band of soldiers and guards from the chief priests and the Pharisees and went there with lanterns, torches, and weapons.

Jesus, knowing everything that was going to happen to him, went out and said to them, “Whom are you looking for?”  They answered him, “Jesus the Nazorean.”  He said to them, “I AM.” ...When he said to them, “I AM,” they turned away and fell to the ground.” (John 18:3-5).  

One would imagine that Roman soldiers and guards are physically strong. But they could not stand the power that came from this Jesus the Nazorean, when he said “I AM”.  They fell to the ground.  Jesus proved that He is the Great ‘I AM’, the Almighty – the All Powerful God.

 

Yes even the demons recognise and acknowledge Jesus the Nazorean as the Holy One:

Luke Chapter 4:34 states:

“Ha! What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us?  I know who you are—the Holy One of God!”

At this the disciples were amazed and said; “For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits, and they come out.”

What do the saints say about the Holy Name of Jesus?

St Bernard says,

"When I utter the name of Jesus, I see before me a man of meekness, humility, kindness, and mercy, Who at the same time is the Almighty God, Who heals and strengthens me."  “...it is He alone who experiences it, that can know what sweetness, what a paradise even in this valley of tears, it is truly to love Jesus.”

St. Anselm says,

"Let Jesus be ever in thy heart. Let Him be thy food, thy delight, thy consolation." St Anselm asks all Christians to cherish the beautiful name of Jesus, to have it always in their hearts, that it may be their only food and their only consolation.

St. Laurence Justinian says;

" if thou art bound down by sickness, if sorrows weary thee, if thou art trembling with fear, invoke the name of Jesus."

We now know, why we need to honour the Holy Name of Jesus with great confidence and love.  Calling upon His Holy Name will enable us to combat the enemy.  Jesus assured us that, “whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give you” (John 15:16).

And again Jesus promises: “...whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.  If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it”  (John 14:14).

With unwavering faith therefore, we can pray in times of temptation, when our weakness and sinfulness tend to surface, we can call on Jesus' most holy name.  We can pray for others in our family who suffer from addictions, weaknesses and sinfulness through the Holy name of Jesus. Through the power of Jesus' Holy name, we can pray for our spouses, our children, our siblings, leaders of our countries, our priests, our religious and for families around the world who are struggling.

Devotions to Jesus' Most Holy Name?

It is an ancient Catholic tradition to bow our heads each time we mention the name of Jesus in prayer. This is something that we can easily start from today and teach our children. 

On the feast day of the Holy Name of Jesus, January 3rd  we can attend Holy Mass and do something special to honour Jesus.

Prayer for oneself through Jesus' Holy Name.

Honouring Jesus's Most Holy Name.

Litany of the Most Holy Name of Jesus.

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