“His name is Jesus.” Joseph and Mary, as parents of this special child, were allowed to name him. Jesus means: Yahweh saves. Yahweh is a Jewish way of describing God. In other words: God saves. Right at his birth, Jesus was given a name that suited his mission. Did you know that in Central and South America it is very normal to name your child Jesus?
Immanuel is also an important name given to Jesus. Immanuel means: God is with us. This name also showcases an important element of Jesus. He is a way for us to experience God up close and personal.
The Bible was written by many different authors. All with their own experience and interpretation of God and of Jesus. They often all highlight their own aspect of Jesus and all give a little insight to the question: Who is Jesus? For example, there are more than 100 different nicknames of Jesus in the Bible.
A small selection:
Jesus is seen as a lawyer between man and God. As humans, we can make mistakes or want nothing to do with God. Yet there is always a way back to God. Jesus helps to reconnect by pleading for you.
Alpha and Omega
The Alpha and Omega are the first and the last letter of the Greek alphabet. Jesus is seen as the first and last. It symbolizes the omnipotence of God. That He is always and everywhere. From start to finish.
Son of God
Jesus is seen by Christians as the Son of God. God brought His Son to earth to truly experience what it is like to live with humans. To share the love, the joy, the pain and the sorrow. To show that he is not far away, but wants to be close. But also to show that God is willing to give everything to make things right between you and God. Even if it means sacrificing his own son.
The cornerstone is always the most important pillar for a building to make a building solid. Jesus is described as a cornerstone because he is the main point of connection between us and God. Jesus provides a solid foundation.
In many countries the occupation of a shepherd is dying trade. In the time of Jesus, being a shepherd was a normal profession. As a shepherd you took care of the sheep. You brought the sheep from A to B. You protected sheep from attacks and if a sheep got lost you made sure that the sheep was found. In this comparison, we humans are the sheep. Jesus takes care of us like a good shepherd. He wants to protect us.
In the time of Jesus it was quite normal to sacrifice animals. Often a lamb was chosen. A sacrifice was a sign of allegiance to God or as a plea to make amends. At the end of his life, Jesus is killed. His life was sacrificed like a lamb to make amends between God and man.
Husband / groom
The relationship between man and Jesus is sometimes described in the Bible as that between man and woman. Jesus who is proud of his bride and wants to take good care of her. But also as a husband who is jealous if his wife does not look after him or cheat on him.
A rock in the surf. A rock you can build on. Jesus is described as a rock in various ways. Sturdy, reliable, unshakable.
Prince of Peace
Jesus wants to bring peace. Peace between people, but also peace between God and people. He is never violent in his dealings and conduct.
Light of the world
Where do you have to be if you want to give light? Exactly. In the dark. That’s exactly where Jesus wants to be. He wants to bring light to the dark, in the difficult times of our life. Especially where there is misery, pain, sadness, fear. He wants to bring relief. Light also makes things visible. Beautiful things, but also things that cannot withstand daylight.
In each name you discover something about the character or the mission of Jesus. What name appeals to you?