Today Pastor Choi talks about the most powerful name of all: Jesus. Encouraging the congregation to ponder the name Jesus, he answers carefully three questions on the name of Jesus:
Q1: Do I know the name ‘Jesus’?
Q2: Do I know the meaning of the name ‘Jesus’?
Q3: Do I claim the name and do everything in the name of ‘Jesus’?
In the end he exhorts the congregation to do everything in the name of Jesus and start experiencing Jesus in a new way.
Following is a summary of his sermon:
The Name Jesus Matthew 1:18-25
- 18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yetdid not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. 20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 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.”22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”). 24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25 But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.
- Do the Bible trivia insert before the sermon.
- Let me begin with a story of a woman in the 19th century in America (There Is More, Tae-Hyung Lee, p.76). She was an African-American woman who was a believer in Jesus. She loved the Lord with all her heart. Naturally she desired to know more of Jesus. Where could she do so? Of course, in the Bible. Yet, she had a problem. She couldn’t read. Since she was a slave serving a white family and like many other slaves in those days, she was illiterate. No one sent her to school. Her daily responsibility was to take care of the children of her master. One day she asked the children if they would teach her to read some words in the Bible such as “Jesus Christ.” So, the children taught her how to recognize those two words in the Bible. She was delighted with her new gained knowledge. One day she got her own Bible. Whenever she had a chance to be alone, she opened the New Testament and started searching for the word “Jesus” using her index finger going page after page. Each time she found the name Jesus, she was the happiest woman in the world, because the Name Jesus gave her a great comfort and strength.
- This morning we are going to discover and rediscover the joy and the significance of the name Jesus in the believer’s life. Did you know that the New Testament (NT) literally begins and ends with this Name ‘Jesus’? E.g. Matthew 1:1 (“A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham”) and Revelation 22:21 (“The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all”). All nine authors and their 27 books in the NT (without having a conference together), yet under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, focused on one single theme: Jesus. As a matter of fact, this name consistently appears in every single chapter of the NT except 3 John. Therefore, we can safely say that the NT is all about Jesus.
- Here are some trivia for those curious-minded people: the name ‘Jesus’ (Greek Ἰησοῦς) appears 923 times in the NT (cf. the word ‘God’ — appears about 1200 times). This alone tells us how important the Name Jesus is in the NT.
- More trivia: the average APB (appearances per book) of ‘Jesus’ is 34 (that is, 923 divided by 27 books). The average APC (appearances per chapter) of ‘Jesus’ is 3.6 (923 divided by 260 chapters). The Gospel ‘John’ has the most entries (245 times in 22 chapters: 11.7 APC—almost 4 times more often than the average. This is the book I recommend to every beginner to read).
- The Name “Jesus” is ‘awesome,’ ‘amazing,’ ‘incredible,’ and ‘extraordinary.’ This is the name we are going to think about this morning.
- Let’s ask three questions for ourselves.
Q1: Do I know this Name ‘Jesus’?
- Did you know that this Name ‘Jesus’ is the most powerful name in the world? Did you know that this is the very name that has power and authority over all creatures in the world? This is what the Bible says about this name: it is above all names in the world, both visible and invisible. It is the name that is exalted above all nations and rulers both in heaven and on earth. This is the name to which every knee shall bow and worship (Phil. 2:9-10).
- This is the name that we must love, fear, honor, and revere above all other names. E.g. imagine having an exclusive audience with Queen Elizabeth II. You would show the utmost respect to her and her name. The same queen once said that she would lay her crown at the feet of Jesus upon His return. How much more respect should we show to this Name ‘Jesus’?
- The reality: people tend to misuse this name and profane this name with no idea of what they are doing to and with the name. Never ever treat this name casually. Never ever misuse or profane this name. E.g. Almost all ‘R’-rated movies are filled with profanity using the name of the Lord in vain. Screenwriters, beware how you use the name ‘Jesus’, because God concerns His holy name and will hold you accountable.
Q2: Do I know the meaning of the Name?
- The name ‘Jesus’ means ‘God saves.’ It is a Greek counterpart of Hebrew word ‘Joshua.’ –Jehovah saves.
- What kind of image comes to your mind when you hear and think about the Name Jesus? E.g. around Christmas time, Jesus is a cute little baby boy in a manger—as soon as Christmas is over, we all forget about Him for the rest of year. Next year, we bring out the cute baby image again. No, this is not how we should remember Jesus. We should remember as His name says: God saves.
- Who is Jesus? He is the savior of the world. He came here to save you and to save me. His name tells us about His destiny (why He was born in human flesh) and His mission (why He had to die on the cross): He died on the cross to save you and me from our sins. For us, He was crucified; for us, He resurrected from the dead; for us, He ascended into heaven; and for us, He will come again to judge the world.
- This is the only name given to humanity for their salvation. See Acts 4:12: “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”
Q3: Do I claim this Name and do everything in the Name?
- The Bible says, “In whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17–NIV).
- We are Christ’s bearers. We represent Christ Jesus in the world. We are called to do everything in the name of Jesus. Jesus is our life. He is our breath. He is our strength. He is everything to us.
- Here are some Scriptural examples of doing everything in the name of our Lord: In the name of Jesus we “Bless, rejoice, praise, pray, forgive, love enemy, prophesy, preach, proclaim, confess, call on, walk, minister, raise the dead, heal, cast out demons, do miracles, welcome, gather, baptize, ask, endure hardships, suffer for the Lord, and remain true to this name.”—All in the name of Jesus. E.g. Peter healed the beggar in the name of Jesus. See Acts 3:6-8: 6 Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” 7 Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. 8 He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God.
- Reality Check: How many of the things above do we actually do in the name of Jesus? Maybe a couple? None? It is time that we obeyed God and did everything in the name of Jesus and experienced the wonderful Jesus in our lives.