Mistaken Identities by Pastor James Collins

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:12

Our church garage sale is this weekend. It has become a tradition. Along with the annual garage sale tradition, I have a tradition of digging through all the items and buying back all my stuff that my wife donated. Yesterday, as I was gathering up my stuff, I heard someone yell, “Hey Curtis! Can you give me a hand?” Since I was the only one in the room, I turned to see a man standing in the doorway. He looked right at me and said, “Do you mind helping me unload these donations for the sale, Curtis?” My name is not Curtis. But I’m not great at remembering people’s names either, so I just ignored the fact that he called me by the wrong name.

I put down my collection of David Hasslehoff vinyl albums and walked over to the entryway. He gave me a warm greeting, “Hi Curtis. It’s nice to see you again.” As I helped him unload his donations, he said, “How’s Anita?” My wife’s name is Amanda. I said, “She’s doing great.” He then went on to “Pam” my daughter Abby. He was on a roll.

When we finished unloading his truck, he said, “I will be at the garage sale this Saturday. If I don’t see you then, I will see you Sunday at church. I love to hear you preach, Curtis.” I didn’t have the heart to correct him when he called me Curtis. So, I just said that it was great to see him too and thanked him for the donations.” Since I played along, it will be extremely awkward to tell him I’m not in fact Curtis the next time we talk. But that’s okay. I will be Curtis from now on. I will play this to the grave if need be.

The truth is I am just as guilty of forgetting people’s names. There are about a dozen people at church that I greet with a “Hey…you” because I’ve forgotten their names and it is way too late in the relationship to ask them. However, since I am a Baptist, everyone is “brother” or “sister.” No more mistaken identities.

We are all guilty of forgetting someone’s name. But there is one name that you had better get right. It breaks my heart that our society has done everything that it can to remove His name. His name upsets people. Our society is tolerant of religion, but it is not tolerant of His name. Today, you can’t pray in His name at a high school football game. You can’t say His name in government offices. You can’t preach His name in public places. The only time you hear His name in society is when it is being used as a cussword. But, despite all the hatred of His name, you had better get it right.

The point is: The Bible teaches that there is only one name that brings salvation. His name is greater than Gandhi. His name is mightier than Mohammad. His name is better than Buddha. His name is more exciting than Elvis. His name is more overwhelming than Oprah. His name can save you today, if you call out to Him in faith.

Don’t mistake His identity. Get His name right.

Call out to Jesus and He will save your soul.

James Collins is the senior pastor of Fort Scott’s First Southern Baptist Church. Follow him on Twitter @collins_point, Facebook James Collins “The Point Is,” or from the website thepointis.net.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *