Saturday, March 20, 2010


"This word is supremely the name of human relationship. It is His name as man. It is His name as friend of sinners. Jesus is the Greek form of the Hebrew name 'Joshua.' The name 'Joshua' was a name especially created for a man. The man who was to succeed Moses in the leadership of the Hebrew people was named Hoshea, meaning salvation; but when he was to become the leader his name was mingled with the name Yahweh, or Jehovah, so that Joshua means the salvation of the Lord. In Old Testament history it was borne by two persons: The great leader who brought the people into the land, and the priest seen in the vision of Zechariah standing by the alter. When Jesus was born in Bethlehem long ago there were probably hundreds of Joshuas in Nazareth, Capernaum, Jerusalem.

Then bear in mind Paul's declaration concerning the name: 'God highly exalted Him, and gave unto Him the name which is above every name; that in the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, of things in heaven, and things on earth, and things under the earth.' The name given to Him in babyhood, and carried by Him in boyhood and through manhood, was the sign of an intention. He received it anew when He ascended to the right hand of the Father as the sign of the fact that He had accomplished the intention. The name became the name above every name; but it is not a Divine name, it is a human name; it is the name that brings Him near to me in my humanity; it is the name borne by One Who looked out on life with eyes like mine, felt its emotions with a heart like mine, walked its way with feet like mine, did its work with hands like mine; it is truly the name of a man of my humanity, that I feel that I may, without irreverence, lay my hand on His and call Him Brother-Man. That is the supreme significance of the name Jesus, and thus it expresses the truth the title Christ confirms, 'for it is He that shall save His people from their sins.'

In its relation to the Person who bears it the name reminds us that He brings infinite things to our level in order that we may understand them. Jesus of Nazareth was the central, final, ultimate anthropomorphism. Because men could encompass a conception of God only by projecting their own personalities into immensity, God out of immensity contracted His personality to that of a human being, that men might see Him and know Him, grasp the infinite, fathom the unfathomable, and come through flesh into communion with the eternal spirit. In His manhood Jesus was the sacramental revelation of the things that are infinite in their splendor, their glory, and their magnificence. The name 'Jesus' reminds me of the Man, and yet reminds me of the Man through Whom I am enabled to find my way into fellowship with infinite things."

--G. Campbell Morgan, How God has Made Possible What He Requires - The Westminster Pulpit

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