According to Chuck Pierce's book, A Time to Advance, the eighth month on the Hebrew calendar (Cheshvan) is a time to "war with words." It is also a time of new beginnings. Words have the power to transform a person’s life for good or bad. Word power was demonstrated by God when He spoke the world into existence. With the phrase, "Let there be," He created light, the sky, the sun, moon and stars. (Genesis 1) After creating Adam, God gave him the responsibility of naming every creature. (Genesis 2:19) It was God who named Adam, which means "earthy," "red earth" and "of the ground." God was clarifying Adam's purpose of having dominion over the earth with his task. (Genesis 1:26) It appears as though Adam's wife had no name before "the fall" other than woman, "For she was taken out of man." (Genesis 2:23) After God told the first couple the consequences of their sin, Adam named his wife Eve, which means "life-giving" and "mother of all the living." (Genesis 3:20) I wonder...if Adam had given Eve her name before she was tempted, would she have been able to resist the temptation knowing the call on her life was as a "life-giver"?
In the Hebrew culture a person's name is extremely important. Father God always sees us as we are meant to be, not as we are. There are many examples in the Bible where God names a person according to their future. Abram, whose name was changed to Abraham, is a good one. God changed his name before he had one descendant, yet his new name means "father of a multitude" or "father of many nations." Read what the writer of Hebrews says about Abraham: "...He is the father of us all. As it is written: 'I have made you a father of many nations.' His is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed--the God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were." (Romans 4:16-17) Those around Abraham saw him as an old man who had no offspring. In God's eyes he was the man from whom many nations would be birthed. His name was a prophetic declaration of whom he would be.
Gideon (from the tribe of Manasseh, linked with the month of Cheshvan) doubted his ability as a warrior and identified with fear and the smallness of his tribe. A prophetic word from the visiting angel of the Lord straightened him out. "The Lord is with you, mighty warrior." (Judges 6:12) After receiving this truth, Gideon went on to defeat the Midianite aggressors with only 300 men.
As we can see, God uses names to declare His truth and our prophetic destiny. Like his grandfather, Abraham, Jacob is brought into his future with a name change. Initially, Jacob deceived his father, Isaac, to receive his brother's blessing as the firstborn. Through this act, he lived according to the meaning of his name, "supplanter." However, Jacob's encounter with God, where he wrestled with Him, changed everything. God spoke prophetically: "Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome." (Genesis 32:28)
What are we believing about ourselves? There are verse in the Bible that give us words of identity. For example, "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light." (1 Peter 2:9) In addition, God has a unique name for each one of us. Jonathan Cahn's book, The Book of Mysteries, says, "God sees us not as we are, but as He called us to be. He gives you an identity not based on your past...but on your future, what you are to become. The secret is to receive that identity and believe it before you see it. Live it as if it is." War against any negative words spoken about you and receive and believe the words said about you in the Bible and by the Spirit of God. We may not know the specific name that God calls us; however, the clues to our names come through what we dream about and what makes our hearts sing. Pursue the truth about yourself and live accordingly! This is the month when we should embrace our new beginnings.
Joan E. Mathias