What’s in a name? Oh so much…
– To the lowliest it is all they have – To the upitiest it is all they hear – To the wealthy it is to preserve – To the unknown, to make known
Think of how a name has shaped history:
1. Joash of Judah was the last heir to David’s throne, wicked Athallah (2 Kings 11) thought she won, but he appeared at 7 and became a righteous king. 2. Alexander — Who? The Great, as he stood before Gaza’s gates, declared let me in or I’ll destroy you! They didn’t he the name. 3. Albert who? That eccentric Swiss postal clerk with all his pages of calculations was overlooked by all, until he made it to Princeton and scribbled E = mc2 — five little characters that have impacted the course of history more than any other scientific thought. Albert? Einstein, of course. 4. Some names mean power, as in Napoleon and Stain and Mao. 5. Some carry wealth as in Rothschild, Getty and Rockefeller. 6. Some inspire bravery as in Washington, Churchill, Patton. 7. Some portray beauty as in Leonardo, Titian, Van Gogh.
But there is a name that has no bounds. It cannot be mortally defined. It is above all names. And to the world that name came – Is. 9:6-7.
It was a dark hour in Israel about 730 years before Bethlehem’s babe. And in that moment five things were revealed:
1. A child denoting perfect humanity was to be born who was a son denoting absolute deity.
2. This coming one: “the government will rest on His shoulders” will rule both Israel and the world.
3. He has four magnificent descriptions of majesty: 1) wonderful counselor 2) mighty God 3) everlasting Father 4) prince of peace
4. He will rule from David’s seat in endless power and peace.
5. All of this is because of the zeal — “a mixture of honor and affection close the jealousy”. Oswalt renders it of the Lord. – It seems God’s love is so great it overflows – Just when we figure it out He reveals more – The Spirit of God who yearningly seeks the lost and when He touches those despairing surprises the wayward and His prophets alike.
A Child/Son given — by the zeal of the Lord of Hosts!
But what about that name? What will this coming one be called? Four pairs of distilled divinity. Let’s savor them as we herald our Savior who came and has come to our lives and is coming…. Who is He?
(1) Wonderful Counselor: Some have separated these two but the Old Testament Hebrew Bible or Matthew puts them together. Isaiah defines this graphic title. 11:2 spirit of wisdom, understanding, counsel
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and strength 28:29 “His counsel wonderful…” True wisdom from the wonderful counselor knows that: in weakness is strength; surrender is victory; death is life; Look at 42:1-4; 50:6. Suffering servant Let’s listen to some of the wonderful counselor’s wonderful counsel: Mt. 11:28-30 come unto Me John 8:12 I am light John 12:24-26 except die…
He is the wonderful counselor in redemption (Heb. 1:3) “Who being the brightness of His glory…when He had…sat down.” He has all treasures (Col. 2:3) “In whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” What are you searching for? Have you found all the tresures yet? They’re in the wonderful counselor.
(2) Mighty God – the One to whom all power is given. Creator, hero God who overcomes all who oppose. – Is. 10:21 – Deut. 10:17 For your God is…
And how does He demonstrate this power? He can take all the evil hurled at Him until none is left to hurl.
See Him conquer in 53:2-10, 59:15-20.
((3) Everlasting Father
– He is the Father of eternity — John 1, Col. 1, Gen. 1, creating all including time, ages, purposes “for by Him were all things….”
57:15 inhabits/possesses eternity and as Father to us lovingly sacrifices Himself for us His children.
– He is of the same nature or essence as the Father but in the person of the Son.
– See Him as the ancient of days in Dan. 7, Rev. 1.
(4) Finally, and most of all to us, He is today the Prince of Peace.
– In person subduing every foe.
– He shall reign someday over a restored earth with no war and absolute peace. How? By removing the cause of war = human sin. How to remove human sin? By making peace between God/man. How peace between God/man? Remove the enmity/fallenness. How? Only by the embodimient of peace the prince who conquered sin, death and Hell. What’s in a name? Everything that is never going to last/and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal King, and Prince of Peace!