When we think of Jesus, most of the time we think of him as He walked and talked on this earth. While this is a true and wonderful picture of our Savior, now we can look at Jesus in an entirely different way. With His resurrection, His redemptive work was complete as he sat down at the right hand of the Father. NowJesus is both resurrected and glorified in heaven and this position has changed everything including the name which he now owns. God was so pleased with what Jesus did that He has given Him a name far above any other name in existence.
The Name, The Title, The Rank
"So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs" ( Hebrews 1:4 )
A name is an important identifier. A name means something. When Jesus was born into this world the angel instructed Joseph to give him the name of Jesus, "She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins" ( Matthew 1:21 ). The name Jesus is a transliteration of the Hebrew word for Joshua, "Jehovah is salvation', or 'is the savior'. This name was given to the incarnate Son of God as his personal name to show us what He would be and what He would do.
After Jesus reconciled the entire world back to God with his death on the cross ( II Corinthians 5:18-19 ) His name took on a whole new dimension. Look how this passage talks about the power and superiority of this wonderful name: "And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross! 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 confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" ( Philippians 2:8-11 ). God was so pleased with Jesus, that His name was exalted far above every other name. This wonderful exalted name secured forever His eternal position, far superior than any other created thing, including angels.
With the resurrection Jesus also took on the title of Lord. He had always been identified with this title while on the earth, after all it was a customary title of respect and many naturally used it when addressing Him. But its association in the Old Testament signified 'Jehovah, Lord God Almighty'. Jesus also accepted the nuance of the title while on earth tying it back to the Old Testament definition. What is interesting is the fact that after His resurrection His followers, realizing His deity, never again use this word in the common way. Jesus changed forever the meaning of this word, so that whenever it is used in the rest of the New Testament, early Christian writers only used it to refer to, or address Jesus. The title Lord means 'having power or authority, supreme in power'. It is a fitting title for our savior and Lord Jesus Christ. His resurrection and position of authority in heaven is the proof that he now holds the title of Lord eternally.
How does one understand the awesomeness of Christ? Even His name is supreme over every other thing in existence. Paul understood this when he wrote, "if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, "Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame." ( Romans 10:9-11 ). Our faith and salvation rests in Jesus and His position as Savior of the world. Confessing your faith in both His name and title and what those hinge on is the only thing you need to do to have eternal life.
Tomorrow we look at Part 2: Glorified Names that Jesus Holds