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What’s in a Name?

Luke 1:26-38

 

All of us can recall a name that will trigger some sort of memory, some good and some bad.  Then there are those names that many recognize because they became famous either in a good or a bad way.

 

As a child, this little rhyme was used often by our elementary teachers to help kids overcome the names that they were called.    Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me!  Parents sometimes gave their children names that were easy to make fun of, because for the most part kids are cruel. So, unfortunately some cruel names would stick and a child would carry them into adult hood while maybe shaping the persona of that person.  Parents themselves can most directly shape a child by the names they call them.  Suffice it to say, that little rhyme was not true, as much as we would want to believe it was, names can and will hurt a person.  There is One name that can transcend all that hurt and pain, and that is the name of Jesus.

 

V. 26-27 Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David.  The virgin’s name was Mary.

 

Let us first look at the name of Gabriel the angel of the Lord.  Gabriel’s name in Hebrew means “God is my strength” or “Strong man of God”.  Gabriel is mentioned 4 specific times in scripture, twice in Daniel (8:16 and 9:21) and than 500 years later in Luke.  He appeared to Zechariah to announce the birth of John and now we see him here to visit Mary.

 

V. 28-29 And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the lord is with you; blessed are you among women!”  But when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and considered what manner of greeting this was.

 

Gabriel first addresses Mary by calling her “highly favored one”.  I am going to go out on a limb here and conclude that Mary believed she was in the presence of an angel from God from the start of this encounter.  So, that would explain why she was troubled at being called “highly favored one”.

 

V. 30-33 Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.  “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS.  He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David.  And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”

 

 

There are a few people in the scriptures that God directly gave names to, and then there are some whose name He changed later in life.  We never read that God gave Adam his name, so we can only (I believe correctly) assume that He did.  However, I have found seven direct accounts where God gave names to people before they were born.

 

Ishmael (Gen 16:11) Means: "God hears"
Isaac (Gen 17:19) "laughter"
Jezreel (Hos 1:4) "God scatters"
Lo-Ruhamah (Hos 1:6) "not pitied"
Lo-Ammi (Hos 1:9) "not my people"
Jesus (Mt 1:21,25)(Lk 1:31,2:21) "Jehovah is Savior"
John [The Baptist] (Lk 1:13,60,63) "Jehovah has been gracious"

Of course the most important name on that list is our main focus, Jesus.  Jesus is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew Joshua, “The Lord is Salvation.”  We all know the story of how Moses led the people of Israel out of captivity from Egypt to the Promised Land.  However, he was not allowed to bring them in, Joshua was the one who led them into the Promised Land, just like Jesus leads his children into the Promised Land.  However, there are many names for Jesus as seen on the list below.

Genesis – Creator & promised Redeemer

Exodus – the Passover Lamb

Leviticus – High Priest

Numbers – water in the desert

Deuteronomy – He becomes the curse for us

Joshua – Commander of the army of the Lord

Judges – delivers us from injustice

Ruth – our Kinsman-Redeemer

1 Samuel – all in one, He is the Prophet/Priest/King

2 Samuel – King of grace & love

1 Kings – a Ruler greater than Solomon

2 Kings – the powerful prophet

1 Chronicles – Son of David that is coming to rule

2 Chronicles – the King who reigns eternally

Ezra – Priest proclaiming freedom

Nehemiah – the One who restores what is broken down

Esther – Protector of his people

Job – Mediator between God and man

Psalms – our song in the morning and in the night

Proverbs – our wisdom

Ecclesiastes – our meaning for life

Song of Solomon – Author of faithful love

Isaiah – Suffering Servant

Jeremiah – the weeping Messiah

Lamentations – He assumes God’s wrath for us

Ezekiel – Son of Man

Daniel – the stranger in the fire with us

Hosea – faithful husband even when we run away

Joel – He is sending His Spirit to His people

Amos – delivers justice to the oppressed

Obadiah – Judge of those who do evil

Jonah – the greatest missionary

Micah – He casts our sin into the sea of forgetfulness

Nahum – proclaims future world peace we cannot even imagine

Habakkuk – crushes injustice

Zephaniah – the Warrior who saves

Haggai – restores our worship

Zechariah – prophesies a Messiah pierced for us

Malachi – sun of righteousness who brings healing

Matthew – the Messiah who is King

Mark – the Messiah who is a Servant

Luke – the Messiah who is a Deliverer

John – the Messiah who is a God in the flesh

Acts – the Spirit who dwells in His people

Romans – the righteousness of God

1 Corinthians – the power and love of God

2 Corinthians – He is the down payment of what’s to come

Galatians – He is our very life

Ephesians – the unity of our church

Philippians – the joy of our life

Colossians – holds the supreme position in all things

1 Thessalonians – our comfort in the last days

2 Thessalonians – our returning King

1 Timothy – Savior of the worst sinners

2 Timothy – leader of the leaders

Titus – foundation of truth

Philemon – our Mediator

Hebrews – our High Priest

James – He matures our faith

1 Peter – our hope in times of suffering

2 Peter – the One who guards us from false teaching

1 John – source of all fellowship

2 John – God in the flesh

3 John – source of all truth

Jude – protects us from stumbling

Revelation – King of Kings and Lord of Lords,

The Alpha and the Omega,

The Beginning and the End, and

He is coming again and the One who makes all things new.

 

Some have asked the question why Joseph and Mary did not name their Son Immanuel, because of what we read in Matthew 1:22-23.  So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet saying: “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel;” which is translated, “God with us.” Approximately 700 years before the birth of the promised Messiah, Isaiah prophesied about a virgin who would “conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (7:14). Years later, the apostle Matthew referred to Isaiah’s prophecy, specifying once again that, “they shall call His name Immanuel” (1:22-23). Many have wondered why, if the promised Son of Mary was supposed to be called “Immanuel,” this name is never used in the New Testament aside from Matthew’s quotation of Isaiah 7:14. Why do we never read of Mary, Joseph, John the Baptizer, Peter, Paul, or others calling the Messiah “Immanuel”?

Thankfully, as so often is the case with God’s Word, the Bible is its own (and best!) commentary. To better understand what Isaiah meant by the name Immanuel, it is helpful to consider what the prophet wrote two chapters later. In prophesying about the Messiah, Isaiah wrote: “His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (9:6). Did Isaiah mean by this that the Messiah would literally have as His given name “Wonderful,” “Counselor,” or “Everlasting Father”? Surely, to ask is to answer. These names were given to describe the nature of the Messiah, not serve as literal, given names. As commentator Albert Barnes noted:

His [the Messiah’s—EL] attributes shall be such as to make all these applications appropriate descriptions of his power and work. To be called, and to be, in the Hebrew, often mean the same thing.... Such a use of a verb is not uncommon in Isaiah. ‘One calls him,’ is, according to the usage in Isaiah, as ranch as to say [the equivalent of saying—EL], he will justly bear this name; or simply, he will be (1997).

By nature, the son of Mary was “Immanuel” (John 1:1-3; 10:30,33; 20:28), but by name, He was as is “Jesus.”

A similar distinction between one’s nature and name is found as early as Genesis chapter two. Following God’s creation of Eve from Adam’s rib, the first man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man” (Genesis 2:23, emp. added). Although Adam said, “she shall be called woman,” one chapter later Moses recorded how “Adam called his wife’s name Eve” (3:20). Obviously, Adam meant that by nature the one whom God created from his rib was a female human, “a helper comparable to him” (though with noticeable differences and roles—3:18-23), but by name, she would be known as “Eve.”

 

 

V.34-38 Then Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I do not know a man?”  And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will called the Son of God.  Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren.  For with God nothing will be impossible.”  Then Mary said, “Behold the maid servant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.”  And the angel departed from her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Old Testament Book

Main Revelation

Key Prophecies* / Types of Jesus

Genesis

The Seed of the Woman

Messiah would be born of the seed of a woman (Gen 3:15, Luke 1:34-35)
Messiah would be a descendant of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob (
Gen 12:3, 17:19, 28:14, Luke 3:23-34)
Messiah would be a king in the line of Judah (
Gen 49:10, John 1:49)
Typified in the person of Melchizedek (
Gen 14:18)
The life of Isaac - the sacrificed son (Gen 22)
The life of Joseph - the rejected brother (Gen 37)

Exodus

The Passover Lamb

Typified in the life of Moses - the deliverer
The Passover Lamb (Ex 12, John 1:29,36)
The Manna from Heaven (Ex 16, John 6)
The Rock struck at Horeb (Ex 17, 1 Cor 10:4)
The Tabernacle (Brazen Altar, Lampstand, Table of Showbread, Ark of the covenant etc) (Gen 25-30)

Leviticus

The High Priest

Typified in the sacrifices and offerings (Lev 1-7)
In the Jewish festivals (Passover, Atonement, Lev 16, 23)
In the scapegoat (
Lev 16:7-9)
In the person and duties of the High Priest (Lev 16)

Numbers

The Cloud and The Fire

Messiah would be a King (Num 24:17)
Typified in the bronze serpent (Num 21:8-9)
The Water from the Rock (Num 20)

Deuteronomy

The Prophet Like Moses

Messiah will be a prophet (Deut 18:15-19, John 6:14)
Messiah would be worshipped by angels (
Deut 32:43, Luke 2:13-14)
Typified in the cities of refuge (
Deut 4:41)

Joshua

The Captain of Our Salvation

Typified in the person of Joshua (our leader into the promised land)
In the Promised Land
In the Commander of the Army (
Josh 5:13-15)

Judges

The Judge And Lawgiver

Typified in the Judges (for He is true Judge of the living and the dead)

Ruth

The Kinsman Redeemer

Messiah would be a descendant of Boaz and Ruth (Ruth 4:12-17)
Typified in the life of Boaz - The Kinsman Redeemer (
Ruth 2:1)

1 & 2 Samuel

The Prophet of The Lord

Messiah exalted by God with power (1 Sam 2:10, Matt 28:18)
Messiah would be a descendant of David (
2 Sam 7:12-16, Matt 1:1)
Messiah would be the 'Rock' (
2 Sam 23:2-3, 1 Cor 10:4)
Typified in
the life of David - The King in Exile (1 Sam 22)
The
life of Jonathon - the faithful friend (1 Sam 18:1-4)

1 & 2 Kings

The Reigning King

Typified in the life of Solomon (the Millennial Reign)
In the life and miracles of the prophet Elisha (multiplying bread
2 Kings 4:42, healing leper 2 Kings 5)

1 & 2 Chronicles

 Son of David that is coming to rule.

The King who reigns eternally.

Messiah would be from the tribe of Judah (1 Chron 5:2, Luke 3:23-32)
Typified in Solomon's temple
In the Wisdom of Solomon (
2 Chron 9:22)

Ezra

The Faithful Scribe

Typified in person of Zerubbabel, the rebuilder of the temple (Ezra 4)

Nehemiah

The Rebuilder of the Walls

Typified in the person of Nehemiah, the rebuilder of the walls of salvation

Esther

Mordecai

Typified in the person of Mordecai

Job

The Dayspring From on High

Typified in the sufferings of Job and the blessings that would follow

Psalms

The Lord Who Is Our Shepherd

Messiah would be the Son of God (Ps 2:7, 12, Matt 17:5)
Messiah would be resurrected (
Ps 16:8-10, Acts 13:30-37)
Messiah would be despised & crucified (
Ps 22:6-8, 14, Luke 23:21-23, Matt 27:35)
Messiah would be hated without cause (
Ps 69:4, Luke 23:13-22)
Messiah would be Lord, seated at the right hand of God (
Ps 110:1,5, 1 Pet 3:21-22)
Messiah would be in the line of Melchizedek (
Ps 110:4, Heb 6:17-20)
Messiah would be the 'stone' rejected by the Jews (
Ps 118:22, Matt 21:42-43)
Key Messianic Psalms: Chapters 2, 8, 16, 22, 45, 69, 89, 109, 110, 118

Proverbs & Ecclesiastes

The Wisdom of God

Messiah would be from everlasting (Prov 8:22-23, John 17:5)
Messiah would be the Son of God (
Prov 30:4, Matt 3:16-17)
Typified in the Wisdom of God (
Prov 8:22-31)

Song of Solomon

The Lover & Bridegroom

Typified in the Bridegroom's love for, and marriage to, the bride

Isaiah

The Suffering Servant

Messiah would be born of a virgin (Is 7:14, Luke 1:34-35)
Messiah would be Immanuel "God with us" (
Is 7:14, Matt 1:21-23)
Messiah would be God and Man (
Is 9:6, John 10:30)
Messiah would have the 7-fold Spirit upon Him (
Is 11:1-2, Matt 3:16-17)
Messiah would heal the blind, lame, deaf (
Is 35:5-6, Mark 10:51-52)
Messiah would be proceeded by a forerunner (
Is 40:3, Luke 1:17)
Messiah would be a light to the gentiles (
Is 42:6, John 8:12)
Messiah would be despised by the Jewish nation (
Is 49:7, John 10:20, Matt 27:23)
Messiah would be whipped and beaten (
Is 50:6, Matt 26:67, 27:26)
Messiah would die as a guilt offering for sin (
Is 53:10, John 18:11)
Messiah would be resurrected and live forever (
Is 53:10, Mark 16:16)

Jeremiah & Lamentations

The Weeping Prophet

Messiah would be God (Jer 23:6, John 13:13)
Messiah would be a righteous Branch (
Jer 23:5)
Messiah would be our righteousness (
Jer 23:6, 1 Cor 1:30)

Ezekiel

The Son of Man

Messiah would be a descendant of David (Ez 34:23-24, Matt 1:1)

Daniel

The Son of Man coming in the clouds of Heaven

Messiah would be 'a son of man' given an everlasting kingdom (Dan 7:13-14, Luke 1:31-34)
Messiah would come 483 years after the decree to rebuild Jerusalem (Dan 9:25, John 12:12-23)
Messiah would be killed (Dan 9:26, Matt 27:35)
Revealed as the 'stone' (and His kingdom) that smashes the kingdoms of the world (
Dan 2:34,44)
Typified in the 4th man in the fiery furnace - one like 'the son of gods' (
Dan 3:25)

Hosea

The Bridegroom 

Typified in Hosea's faithfulness to his adulterous wife (Hos 3)

Joel

The Baptizer With The Holy Spirit

Messiah will offer salvation to all mankind (Joel 2:32, Rom 10:12-13)
Messiah would baptize people with the Holy Spirit (
Joel 2:28-32)

Amos

The Burden Bearer

God would darken the day at noon during Messiah's death (Amos 8:9, Matt 27:45-46)

Obadiah

The Mighty Savior

 

Jonah

The Forgiving God

Typified in Jonah being 3 days and 3 nights in the belly of a fish (Jon 1:17, Matt 12:40)

Micah

The Messenger With Beautiful Feet

Messiah would be born in Bethlehem (Mic 5:2, Matt 2:1-2)
Messiah would be from everlasting (
Mic 5:2, Rev:1-8)

Nahum

The Avenger of God's Elect

 

Habakkuk

The Great Evangelist, Crying For Revival

Messiah would come from Teman at His return, full of glory (Hab 3:3)
Typified in the life of Habakkuk (his intercession and prayer for his people)

Zephaniah

The Restorer of the Remnant

 

Haggai

The Cleansing Fountain

Messiah would visit the 2nd temple (Hag 2:6-9, Luke 2:27-32)

Zechariah

The Pierced Son

Messiah would be Priest and King (Zech 6:12-13, Heb 8:1)
Messiah would be ride into Jerusalem on a donkey (
Zech 9:9, Matt 21:6-9)
Messiah would be God (
Zech 11:12-13, John 12:45)
Messiah would be pierced (
Zech 12:10, John 19:34-37)

Malachi
 

The Son of Righteousness

Messiah would appear at the temple (Mal 3:1, Mark 11:15-16)
Messiah's forerunner would come in the spirit of Elijah (
Mat 4:5, Matt 3:1-2)

New Testament Book

Main Revelation

Titles / Names Revealed of Jesus

Matthew

The Messiah

The Son of David (Matt 1:1)
The King of the Jews (Matt 2:2)
The Son of God (
Matt 2:15).
The Bridegroom (
Matt 9:15)

Mark

The Miracle Worker

The Holy One of God (Mark 1:24)
The Servant (Mark 10:45)
The King of Israel (
Mark 15:32)

Luke

The Son of Man

The Horn of Salvation (Luke 1:69)
The Consolation of Israel: (Luke 2:25).

John

The Son of God

The Only Begotten Son: (John 1:14,18)
The Lamb of God (John 1:29,36)
The Bread of life (John 6:35)
The Light of the World (John 8:1)
The I AM! (
John 8:58)
The Door of the Sheep: (
John 10:7,9)
The Good Shepherd (
John 10:11)
The Resurrection and life (
John 11:25)
The Way, the Truth, the Life (
John 14:6)
The True Vine (
John 15:1)

Acts

The Ascended Lord

The Prince of Life (Acts 3:15)
The Judge of the living and the dead (
Acts 10:42)
The Just One (Acts 7:52).
The Hope of Israel (
Acts 28:20)

Romans

The Justifier

The Rock of Offense (Romans 9:33)
The Deliverer (
Romans 11:26)
The Lord of the dead and the living (
Romans 14:9)
The Root of Jesse (
Romans 15:12)

1 & 2 Corinthians

The Last Adam

The First-fruits (1 Corinthians 15:23)
The Last Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45)

Galatians

The One Who Sets Us Free

The Lord Jesus Christ (Gal 1:3)

Ephesians

The Christ of Riches

The Head over All Things (Ephesians 1:22)
The Cornerstone: (Ephesians 2:20)

Philippians

The God Who Meets Our Every Need

The Name above all names (Philippians 2:9)

Colossians

The Fullness of The Godhead

The Image of the Invisible God (Colossians 1:15)
The Head of the body (Colossians 1:18)
The Beginning (
Colossians 1:18)
The Firstborn from the dead (
Colossians 1:18)
The Hope of Glory (Col 1:27)

1 & 2 Thessalonians

The Soon Coming King

The Lord of Peace (2 Thessalonians 3:16)

1 & 2 Timothy

The Mediator Between God And Man

The King of Ages (1 Timothy 1:17)
The Mediator (1 Timothy 2:5)

Titus

The Blessed Hope

The Blessed Hope (Titus 2:13)
The Great God and Saviour (
Titus 2:13)

Philemon

The Friend, Closer Than a Brother

The Lord Jesus Christ (Philemon 3)

Hebrews

The Blood That Washes Away My Sins

The Heir of All Things (Hebrews 1:2)
The Faithful High Priest (Hebrews 2:17)
The Author and Finisher of our Faith (Hebrews 12:2)

James

The Great Physician

The Lord of Glory (James 2:1)
The Judge at the door (
James 5:9)

1 & 2 Peter

The Chief Shepherd

The Living Stone (1 Peter 2:4)
The Chief Shepherd  (1 Peter 5:4)

1 & 2 & 3 John

Everlasting Love

The Eternal Life (1 John 1:2)
The Righteous (
1 John 2:1)

Jude

The God our Saviour

The Only Wise God our Saviour (Jude 25)

Revelation

The King of Kings and the Lord of Lords!

The Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last: (Revelation 1:17, 22:13)
The Lion of the Tribe of Judah (
Rev 5:5)
The Word of God (Revelation 19:13).
The King of kings and Lord of lords (
Revelation 19:16)
The Bright Morning Star (Revelation 22:16)