ONE NAME WOULD NOT DO

As we celebrate the Christmas season, time pauses for a brief moment when even people who don’t profess to be followers of the Babe born in Bethlehem are confronted with the name Jesus. O, the name Jesus. It is the name that has been endeared by millions and through history has commanded the attention of nations, felled many an army, toppled countless rulers, baffled philosophers, perplexed sceptics, captured the imagination of artists, struck the cords of music in the hearts of composers, moved the pen of writers, and held in reverence by those who worship Him. Yes indeed, there is something about that name.

When the angel Gabriel appeared unto Mary that she had been chosen to bear the promised Christ Child, the angel informed Mary, and later informed her betrothed husband Joseph, they “shall call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21).

As one reads through the Bible one truth is abundantly clear, Jesus was given many names which describe the character of the One whom we sing, “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, there is just something about that name.” Shakespeare posed the question, “What’s in a name?” Well, in biblical times a name had significant meaning, as a name would denote a characteristic or something related to a person that was a particular feature or identifying trait of the individual. While a name is descriptive, it is also restrictive as it seeks to highlight the dominate character trait of an individual.

When it comes to Jesus one name would not do in describing the wonder of who He was and is. No one name, nor a thousand names, can define or describe Jesus Christ. If one could speak with the tongue of men and angels and one could speak every known language on earth, one would still come up short of fully describing this One named Jesus. The more we know of Him, the more we discover there is to learn about Him. A brief look at some of the names the Bible uses to paint a portrait of the character of Jesus, while revealing much about Him, only scratch the surface of His wonder.

Though not exhaustive by any means, some of the names given to Jesus that shine light on the wonderment of His personhood are: Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace (Is. 9:6-7), the Seed (Gen. 3:15), One born of a Virgin (Is 7:14), Son of God (Mark 1:11), Alpha and Omega (Rev. 22:13), the Ancient of Days (Dan 7:9), Image of the Invisible God ( Col. 1:15), Heir of all Things (Heb 1:2), Radiance of God’s Glory (Heb. 1:3), Exact Representation of God’s Being (Heb 1:3), the Word (John 1:1-3), the Beloved (Eph 1:6), the Only Begotten Son (Jh 3:16), I AM (Jh 8:58), Dayspring from on High (Lk 1:78), the Indescribable Gift (2 Cor 9:15), the Anointed One, the Ruler (Dan 9:25), Son of David (Matt. 1:1), the Branch (Isa 11:1), Arm of the Lord (Isa 53:1), the Babe (Luke 2:12), Immanuel (Matt 1:23), Holy One (Mark 1:24), Brother (Prov 17:17), the Nazarene ( Matt. 2:23), the Carpenter (Mark 6:3), the Galilean (Lk 23:6), the Man (I Tim 2:5-6), Son of Man ( Matt 20:28), the Prophet (Matt 21:11), the Teacher (Jh 3:2), the Great Physician (Lk 4:23), the Chosen One (Is 42:1), the Servant (Phil. 2:7), Man of Sorrows (Is 53:3), Rabboni (Jh 20:16), Shiloh ( Gen. 49:10), the Star (Num 24:17), the Scepter (Num 24:17), Redeemer (Job 19:25), Lilly of the Valley ( Song of Sol 2:1), the Rose of Sharon (Song of Sol 2:1), the Root (Isa 11:10), Leader and Commander (Is 55:4), Lord of Righteousness (Jer. 23:6), King (Zech 9:9), Messenger of the Covenant (Mal 3:1), Sun of Righteousness (Mal 4:2), Bridegroom (Matt 9:15), Friend (Matt 11:19), Horn of Salvation ( Lk 1:69), Lamb of God (Jh 1:29), Water of Life (Jh 4:10), Saviour (Jh 4:42), Judge (Acts 10:42), Our Passover (I Cor 5:7), Rock (I Cor 10:4), the Last Adam ( I Cor 15:45), Chief Cornerstone (Eph 2:20), the Head (Eph 4:15), All in All (Co 3:11), Our Hope (I Tim 1:1), Master (Matt 8:19), Mediator (I Tim 2:5), Author and Perfecter of Our Faith (Heb 12:2), Ransom ( I Tim 2:5-6), Our Wisdom (I Cor 1:30), Our Sanctifier (I Cor 1:30), Advocate (I Jh 2:1), Potentate (I Tim 6:15), King of Kings and Lord of Lords (I Tim 6:15), Pioneer of Our Salvation (Heb. 2:10), the Apostle of our Profession (Heb 3:1), High Priest (Heb 6:20), Overseer (I Peter 2:25), Atoning Sacrifice (I Jh 2:2), the Amen (Rev 3:14), the Faithful and True Witness (Rev 3:14), Lion of the Tribe of Judah (Rev 5:5), the Bread of Life (Jh 6:35), the Light of the World (Jh 8:12), the Door (Jh 10:9),the Good Shepherd (Jn 10:11), the Resurrection and the Life (Jh 11:25), the Way, the Truth and the Life (Jh 14:6), the True Vine (Jh 15:1), the Almighty (Rev 1:8), the Living One (Rev. 1:18), the Offspring of David (Rev, 22:16), Faithful and True (Rev 19:11), the Bright and Morning Star (Rev. 22:16), Lord (Jh 20:28), and God (Jh 20:28).

He is all those names and much, much more. Oh, how I wish I could describe Him to you!! But He is indescribable. One name just wouldn’t do and a thousand are inadequate to ever reveal the radiance and luster of this One called Jesus .

O, what a Savior!

Merry Christmas,
Dr. Dan

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