Tuesday, December 24, 2013

"...And His name shall be called..."

"For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." (Is. 9:6 NKJV) Every Christmas someone will preach a message from this scripture, we reference it in our discussions about Christmas; I have even received several Christmas greetings this year using that particular verse. But how often do we stop to really take in the prophet Isaiah's very descriptive prophecy of who our Savior is? Let's take a moment beloved to dissect and analyze the prophet’s descriptive verse, name by name. Let me begin by saying that very often, I look at scripture through the lens of a writer. By that I mean I look at the grammar mechanics, where commas are placed, is something in parenthesis, is there a word that is connecting one verse to a previous verse, etc. In looking at Isaiah’s prophecy, I see that each name is separated by a comma, and is therefore meant to stand on its own. “And His name shall be called Wonderful,” “And His name shall be called Counselor,” “And His name shall be called Mighty God,” “And His name shall be called Everlasting Father,” “And His name shall be called Prince of Peace.” Each name was a promise of who Jesus would be, for those of us who receive Him as our Savior and Lord. They are not just titles to be recited poetically; they inform us of Messiah’s roll in our lives! His name shall be called “Wonderful.” Wonderful has two definitions, that make perfect sense when used as a name for Jesus: (1) of a quality that excites admiration or amazement; (2) suiting somebody perfectly. If you have received Jesus as your Savior, think about your life before Christ and your life now. Is there something about Jesus, just saying His name that excites you? Does His goodness and love for you sometimes leave you shaking your head in amazement? Does life in the loving care and forgiveness of Jesus Christ suit you perfectly? My answer is Yes! His name shall be called “Counselor.” There are two definitions of counselor that jump out at me when I look at Jesus as Counselor; (1) somebody such as a friend who gives advice; (2) an attorney, especially one who acts for a client in a trial. What a beautiful image. Jesus is certainly a friend who gives advice. Have you ever been in a situation when you had no answer, no one to turn to and the still small voice from within advises you on what to do, how to do or where to go? That is Jesus, our friend, being a counselor. When the “accuser of the brethren” stands to accuse us with our past, pointing out our failures and shortcomings, our attorney, Jesus is there representing us, speaking on our behalf, reminding the Father and Satan that our past has been wiped clean by His blood! Jesus our Counselor! His name shall be called Mighty God! Jesus, contrary to how he is portrayed in some Hollywood productions, is a Mighty God! If you read the Gospels and you see how He faced down His challengers, if you read the Book of the Revelation, you will see that He is a Mighty God! Jesus is not the helpless little baby in the manger, and He is not the broken, disfigured body hanging on the cross, He is our Mighty God! His name shall be called Everlasting Father. In Ephesians chapter one we see Jesus as everlasting, “just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.” (Eph. 1:4-6 NKJV) Jesus has always been who He is and we were eternally His. And He shall be called Prince of Peace. Have you ever been in a situation beloved where everything that you saw, every report, every word spoken was telling you to fall apart, lose control and give up? Yet you found yourself in peace! There is a peace that comes in Christ Jesus that allows you to lie down and rest when all hell is breaking loose. There is a peace in Christ Jesus beloved that fills us when the report is “the worst case scenario.” Why is that? Because our Prince of Peace is reigning supreme in our lives; He is present and He holds us in the midst of the storm! Jesus, our Prince of Peace! Beloved, this Christmas, amid the joy and fellowship that you share with your family, take time to reflect upon who Jesus Christ is in our lives. He is not the “sweet little Jesus boy,” he is not “Mary’s little baby wrapped in swaddling clothes.” Jesus is Wonderful, He is Counselor, He is Mighty God, He is Everlasting Father, He is Prince of Peace! Praise God! Merry Christmas beloved, thank you for stopping by to read my posts this year, I pray you were blessed by them. I hope you will come back in 2014!