Once, I had the opportunity to be with law enforcement as we traveled to a residence looking for someone. The person’s car was there and we were pretty certain he was home, but he would not come to the door to be served papers that had to be delivered that day. We have watched the scene on television dramas many times as they announce, “open up in the name of the law.” The meaning is simply this: open the door by the authority of the law. The officer was not saying open this door simply because I said so, or in my name. He was saying it with the authority and backing of the badge he wore that represented the laws of our country. “Open up in the name of the law” was a way of saying open up by the authority of the laws of our country.
Colossians 3:17 states, “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the LORD Jesus, giving thanks to GOD the Father through Him.”
“In the name of the LORD Jesus” is synonymous with “by the authority of the LORD Jesus.”
There is authority associated with naming something. We may think of naming our children or naming our pets. In Genesis 2:19-20, Adam was told to name all the animals. In 1:28 it was noted that he had dominion or authority over them all.
The Colossians text teaches us that all we do has to be done with His (Christ’s) authority. As a matter of fact, look closely at the emphasis placed on the “all”. Three times in the text it is emphasized. Whatever you do – that encompasses the totality of our actions. In word or deed – words of course are the things we say and teach; deeds represent our actions or practice. And once more for emphasis the scripture adds do all, which leaves out nothing.
Everything we do, whatever we do, our teaching and words, as well as our actions, must be done in keeping with His authority. Thus we must be certain that we live our lives in harmony with the teachings of Christ.
Let us submit to His authority in every area of life. Whether it is my home, the way I spend my recreational time, the way I worship Him, etc., let us do all by His authority.
The guy never did come to the door that day and I still think he was home. He wasn’t willing to submit to the authority of the laws of our country.