This is the first in a series about the name of Jesus. I’ve always loved the names the Bible gives us and many of the ones we’ve given Him. There’s beauty in each one.
Ever notice how words can lose their effect when they become overused? A loooong time ago, we all started saying we would xerox something instead of copying it, and it became used that way so much that they were in danger of losing the copyright to “xerox.” (I don’t think they did though, and I don’t care enough to look it up.) Every tissue is “kleenex,” all tape is “scotch tape,” in Texas, all soft drinks are “coke,”……
I think we sometimes do the same with the name “Jesus.” We say it so often that we forget what a powerful name it really is. The name itself wasn’t out of the ordinary at the time; in fact, it was quite common. God didn’t want us to be attracted to Him because of His name. I hope this doesn’t offend anybody, but am I the only one thinking about Pheobe/Princess Consuela _______ on Friends? That’s an example of the name being the attraction rather than the person. God didn’t want that for Jesus or for us.
Depending on what source you use, you’ll see that “Jesus” means “God saves,” “salvation,” and “Savior.” That meaning is a good reminder of why Jesus was sent to us, but meanings of names don’t really mean much anymore. So what sets the name of our Savior apart from others? Why should we hold it in our hearts? Well, how about this? Philippians 2:9,10 – Therefore, God exalted Him to the highest place and gave Him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
What makes the name “Jesus” special is the power of our Savior. He alone was with God at creation (John 1:1-3), changed water into wine (John 2:1-10), fed the 5000 with five loaves of bread and two fish, (Matthew 14:12-21), walked on water (Matthew 14:25-31), calmed the storm (Mark 4:37-41), drove out demons (two examples- Mark 1:23-26 32-34), healed the sick, blind, lame, (two examples Mark 1:30-31, 40-42), raised the dead (one example – John 11:38-44), and He alone defeated sin, hell, and the power of the devil (John 19:23 – 20:29).
So don’t be like so many today who use this amazingly powerful name as something meaningless or as an expletive. Remember what it means and the power God gave it. More importantly, remember whose name it is.