Names of Jesus: Jesus

It's a name known around the world, the most famous name of all time. By the mention of this name demons flee, people are healed, and lives are changed. There is power in this name: Jesus. But what does it mean?

In the coming weeks, we will explore many titles and names given to our savior. But I wanted to start with the one he was given when he first arrived on earth. Why did the angel tell Mary and Joseph to name their son Jesus?

"She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins." (Matthew 1:21)

Jesus was not a unique name to Jews at that time. It comes from the Hebrew name Yeshua (ישע) which means Yahweh saves. It's also where we get the name Joshua. Jesus was called this to announce to the world that he was the savior they were waiting for. It was a proclamation that he would deliver the people from their sins.

In Jesus time on earth, his name was a reminder of what God had done, was doing, and was going to do in the people of Israel. It was a reminder of Joshua from the Old Testament whom God brought into the promised land. It was also telling all who came into contact with Jesus that he was bringing life and hope when he preached, healed, and interacted with people. And it was foretelling what Jesus was going to do on the cross: save us from the grip of sin and death. For the Israelite, his name was packed with salvific meaning for the past, present, and future. It is for us as well.

The name of Jesus points us back to his finished work on the cross. But salvation is also a present reality for us. The name of Jesus brings power and salvation to our everyday realities. And it foretells the return of Jesus when he will unite heaven and earth. Jesus might be a simple name, but it is the most important one you'll ever hear.

"Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." (Philippians 2:9-11)