Say the Name: Learning & Loving the Name of Jesus

Today’s elected reading continues in the New Testament gospel narrative of the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ as it was written and recorded by the beloved physician Luke. More specifically, today’s passage is found in verses twenty-one through fifty-two of the second chapter. “And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb” (Luke 2:21).

            “And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord: (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord) and to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A part of turtledoves, or two young pigeons” (Luke 2:22-24).

            “And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was a just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law, then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lor, now lettest thou thy servant depart in pace, according to thy word: for mine eyes have seen thy salvation, which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel” (Luke 2:25-32).

            “And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him. And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed” (Luke 2:33-35).

            “And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; and she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. And eh coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem. And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city Nazareth. And the child grew, and waxed strong in spoirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him” (Luke 2:36-40).

            “Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem after the custom of the feast. And when they had fulfilled the days, as they returned, the child Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem; and Joseph and his mother knew not of it. But they, supposing him to have been in the company, went a day’s journey; and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance. And when they found him not, they turned back again to Jerusalem, seeking him. And it came to pass, that after three das they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers. And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? Behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them. And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man” (Luke 2:41-52).

            WHEN EIGHT DAYS WERE ACCOMPLISHED! THE CIRCUMCISING OF THE CHILD! HIS NAME WAS CALLED JESUS! WHICH WAS SO NAMED OF THE ANGEL BEFORE HE WAS CONCEIVED IN THE WOMB! ”Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: FOR THAT WHICH IS CONCEIVED IN HER IS OF THE HOLY GHOST. AND SHE SHALL BRING FORTH A SON, AND THOU SHALT CALL HIS NAME JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: and knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: AND HE CALLED HIS NAME JESUS” (Matthew 1:18-25).

            “And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, AND SHALT CALL HIS NAME JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall over thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee SHALL BE CALLED THE SON OF GOD” (Luke 1:26-35).

            “And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, HIS NAME WAS CALLED JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb” (Luke 2:21).

            THOU SHALT CALL HIS NAME JESUS! AND HE CALLED HIS NAME JESUS! SHALT CALL HIS NAME JESUS! HIS NAME WAS CALLED JESUS! LEARNING THE NAME OF THE MESSIAH! LEARNING THE NAME OF THE CHRIST! LEARNING THE NAME OF THE SON OF GOD! HEARING THE NAME JESUS FOR THE FIRST TIME! THE ANGEL GABRIEL ANNOUNCED THE NAME UNTO MARY! THE ANGEL OF THE LORD ANNOUNCED THE NAME OF JESUS UNTO JOSEPH!

When you come to this particular portion of Scripture you are immediately caught with perhaps one of the loudest and most profound statements found within the four gospel narratives written concerning the life and ministry of Jesus. As you come to the words which are found in this portion of Scripture you will find Mary and Joseph waiting the prescribed eight days which was ordained and appointed within the Law of Moses before the child which had broken the womb would be circumcised. I have to admit that I am absolutely and completely enamored and captivated with the words and language that is found within this portion of Scripture, for the words presented here before and unto us bring us face to face—not only with the circumcising of the child which would be brought forth from the womb of Mary, but also the name of the child. In the opening twenty verses of this chapter we find Mary giving birth to her firstborn son in the town of Bethlehem, and upon giving birth to Him she would wrap Him in swaddling clothes and place Him in a manger. It is when you read the opening verses of this chapter you will be brought face to face with the absolutely tremendous and astonishing truth concerning the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ, and how it would be in the town of Bethlehem He would be born as it was prophesied according to the word of the Lord which was prophesied centuries before by the Hebrew prophet Micah. I have to admit that I am absolutely and completely captivated with and by the words and language that is found within this portion of Scripture, for the words we find here bring us to the point and place where we acknowledge the name of the Lord Jesus Christ as it was given to Him by Mary and Joseph.

THE NAME WAS GIVEN BY GOD BEFORE IT WAS GIVEN BY MAN! THE NAME WAS GIVEN BY GOD UNTO MAN, AND MAN WOULD IN TURN GIVE IT TO HIM! If there is one thing we must needs realize and understand concerning the narrative and account of Jesus it’s that the name which was given unto Him was not a name chosen by Mary, or even by Joseph. Upon reading the words found within the gospel narratives and accounts written by these four authors you will find that the name which would be given unto the Son of God would be proclaimed first unto Mary when the angel Gabriel visited her in the town of Nazareth, and it would again be echoed and repeated unto Joseph when the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream by night. How absolutely incredible and astonishing it is to think about and consider the fact that when you think about the name of Jesus you must needs realize and understand that it was a name which was first known in heaven before it was ever known within the earth. The name JESUS was first proclaimed in heaven before it would ever be proclaimed in the earth unto both Mary and Joseph. Oh I can’t help but wonder what it was like in heaven before the throne of God when the Son was preparing to depart from the eternal throne of God and enter into the realm of time and space as a man. I find myself wondering if the name JESUS was the name that belonged to Him in heaven before He ever laid aside the garment of His divinity to take upon Himself the cloak and garment of humanity. We know from Scripture that the name JESUS is such an incredibly important and powerful name that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess in earth, and under the earth and in heaven. What’s more, is that this name JESUS is a name that would indeed and would in fact be exalted above every other name given unto men within heaven and earth, and it would be the name which the eternal Father would Himself give unto the Son. It is this very thought that causes me to think about and wonder if this name was not chosen by the Son in heaven before He would depart from the throne of God and enter into the realm of time and space, or whether or not it was a name the Father had indeed and had in fact given unto Him. It is with this in mind I invite you to consider the following words which are found in the first chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John, the words which are found in the second chapter of the New Testament epistle written by Paul unto the Philippian saints, as well as the words which are found in the first and second chapters of the New Testament epistle written unto the Hebrews:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not” (John 1:1-5).

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men though him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth” (John 1:6-14).

If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 1:1-11).

But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (That is, to bring Christ down from above), Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth THE LORD JESUS, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, bring glad tidings of good things” (Romans 10:6-15).

God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heri of all things, but whom also he made the worlds; who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son? And again, when he bringeth in the first begotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him. And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: they shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; and as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?” (Hebrews 1:1-14).

For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? Or the son of man, that thou visitest him? Thou  madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedest him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands. Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee, and again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me. Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; and deliver them who through fear od eath were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted” (Hebrews 2:5-18).          

It is absolutely remarkable and astounding when you think about and consider that which is found in the second half of the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the beloved physician Luke, for what we find here within this passage of Scripture is a powerful declaration concerning the name of JESUS. What we find within this portion of Scripture is an incredibly powerful declaration concerning the name of JESUS and how it was more than simply that which the angel Gabriel revealed unto Mary when he appeared unto her, and more than simply that which the angel of the Lord spoke unto Joseph by a dream during the night. It was one thing for the angel Gabriel to reveal the name of JESUS unto Mary when he appeared unto her in the town of Nazareth, however, it is something else entirely different for that name to be spoken out loud. It was one thing for the angel of the Lord to appear unto Joseph by night in a dream and not only declare that what was conceived within the womb of Mary was of the Holy Ghost, but was also of the Holy Ghost; however, it was something else entirely and altogether different for Joseph to actually name the child JESUS. Scripture is entirely and altogether unclear whether or not Joseph and Mary had any communication concerning and regarding the name of the child that was conceived within her womb, and yet Scripture does indicate and reveal that they would both know the name of the child which would be revealed unto them before the child was actually born and brought forth into the world. We aren’t given any clue or any indication as to whether or not Mary and Joseph had any communication concerning the child, however, one thing we do know for sure is that they both knew the name of the child. Stop and think about the fact that before the child would even be conceived within the womb of Mary she would know His name—the name which would be declared and proclaimed unto her on that day in the town of Nazareth. What’s more, is that before the child would even be brought forth from the womb of Mary Joseph would also learn of the name of this child and would be very much aware that this child was destined for greatness.

I sit here today thinking about and considering this awesome and powerful reality, and I can’t help but wonder how much time—if you can even consider time in the realm of eternity—passed between the time Gabriel made the announcement unto Mary and when Jesus actually departed from heaven and eternity and would enter into the womb of Mary to be brought forth as a child. Although Scripture was entirely and altogether unclear whether or not Jesus was still present in heaven and eternity when the announcement was made unto Mary we can’t help but wonder what it was like for the Son to not only hear the announcement that was made unto Mary, but also heard the name JESUS. There is a part of me that can’t help but wonder if prior to His willingness to take upon Himself the form of human flesh and the seed of Abraham He was simply known as the Son, and it wasn’t until He actually left and departed from the realm of eternity and heaven that a name would be given unto Him. Is it possible that it wasn’t until the eternal and only begotten Son departed from heaven that the name which generations would know Him as would finally be given unto Him. There was no one in all of the Old Testament who knew and understood the name of JESUS, and the name JESUS was not and had not even been mentioned. Even when the ancient Hebrew prophet Isaiah prophesied and spoke about the coming of the Messiah he would not know, nor would he be given the name JESUS. He would indeed be given other names which would be associated with the Messiah, however, He would not at all know or be aware of the name of JESUS. I wonder what it was like for Gabriel while he was still in heaven when the living and eternal God spoke unto him and declared that He was being sent unto a town called Nazareth in the land of Galilee unto a virgin to not only proclaim the birth of a child who would come from her own womb, but also the very name that would be synonymous and associated with the Son. What was it like for Gabriel to come unto Mary on that particular day and emphatically declare and proclaim unto her that she would conceive a child within her womb, and that the child which would grow inside of her would be given the name of Jesus?

Pause for a moment and think about and consider what it would have been like in heaven as the angel Gabriel departed for the realm of time and space to not only proclaim that the virgin she would conceive, but also to the virgin that she would conceive. What must it have been like in heaven when and as the angel Gabriel departed from the realm of eternity and heaven and enter into the realm of time and space to not only proclaim unto the virgin herself that she would conceive and give birth, but also that she would give birth to a Son whose name would be JESUS. Stop and think about what it would have been like for Mary to understand and recognize that she was the virgin whom the prophet Isaiah had spoken of and prophesied. Is it possible that Mary ever knew and understood that she was indeed the virgin whom the prophet Isaiah had spoken about, and that when He spoke of the birth of the Messiah she would indeed and would in fact be the one who would conceive and bring forth this child into the world. It is truly something awesome and powerful to think about and consider the words which are found in the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative which was written by the beloved physician Luke, for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely astonishing truth that the angel Gabriel would indeed and would in fact be sent from before the throne of God and from standing in the presence of God to standing before Mary that he might proclaim unto her the birth of a child whom she herself would conceive and bring forth. I can’t help but wonder what it was like in heaven when Gabriel proclaimed, declared and announced the birth of the Messiah—and not only announced the birth of the Messiah, but also proclaimed the name of JESUS. Was there a collective gasp and sigh in heaven when the name JESUS was mentioned for the first time in the realm of time and space?

I sit here right now thinking about and considering the words which are found within this passage of Scripture—and not only this passage of Scripture, but also the words which are found in the first and opening chapter of this gospel—for what we are presented with is a tremendous picture of the angel Gabriel pronouncing the name of JESUS for the first time within and upon the earth. Imagine what it was like for Gabriel to be that angel who was given the assignment to not only proclaim the birth of John the Baptist, but also to proclaim the birth of JESUS who would be the Son of the Highest. What a tremendous assignment and mission that was for this angel Gabriel as he would be specifically chosen and sent by the living and eternal God to announce unto the virgin that she would conceive, as well as reveal unto the virgin the name of the child she would bring forth. It wasn’t simply enough for the angel to declare unto Mary that she would conceive and bring forth a child and a Son, but the angel Gabriel would also proclaim and declare unto her the actual name of the Messiah. The angel Gabriel would indeed and would in fact announce and proclaim the name of the Messiah unto Mary when he came in unto her and proclaimed that she would conceive and bring forth a son. When the angel Gabriel came unto Mary in the town of Nazareth he would come unto her and emphatically and powerfully proclaim that she would indeed conceive and bring forth a Son and that the name of that Son would in fact be JESUS. Imagine what it was like for Mary to not only hear that she would conceive a son within her womb being yet a virgin, hearing that the Holy Ghost would come upon her and the power of the Highest would overshadow her, and hearing the name of the Messiah and Son who would be born unto her. Imagine what must have gone through the heart and mind of Mary as she would hear the name JESUS for the first time ever in the realm of time and history. How absolutely wonderful and remarkable it is to think about and consider the fact that the angel Gabriel would not only proclaim the name JESUS for the first time in history, but Mary would be the first one to actually hear the name of JESUS out loud and proclaimed in the midst of the earth. Think about how absolutely astounding and incredible this truly is when you take the time to consider it, for Mary would indeed and would in fact hear the name JESUS—a name that would eventually be exalted above all other names, and that at the name of JESUS every knee in heaven and earth would bow, and every tongue would confess that He is Lord.

There is something absolutely spectacular and powerful when you think about and consider the truth surrounding this encounter which would take place between Mary and the angel Gabriel, for it would not only be the first time the name of JESUS would be proclaimed in the midst of the earth, but it would also be the first time the name JESUS would be heard in the earth. What’s more, is that the name JESUS would be mentioned a second time before He would actually be born unto Mary in the town of Bethlehem, for the angel of the Lord would appear unto Joseph by dream during the night encouraging and admonishing him to not be afraid to take Mary unto himself as his wife. We must needs recognize and understand how absolutely incredible this truly is when you consider it, for it brings us into the place where we acknowledge the name of JESUS as having been mentioned for the very first time in human history. This name which countless lepers, blind, deaf, poor, desperate and destitute would cry out and call upon during those three and a half years Jesus would be publicly manifested in the midst of the earth would be first be audibly spoken in the hearing of Mary in the town of Nazareth as Gabriel would announce that name, and it would be mentioned within a dream that would be given unto Joseph by night. The name of Jesus would first be mentioned audibly within the realm of time and space when Gabriel came and appeared unto Mary, and it would be mentioned a second time—although the second time it would be mentioned it would not be mentioned audibly, but would be mentioned within a dream given unto Joseph. How absolutely captivating it is to think about and consider the fact that the name of JESUS would be mentioned and spoken twice prior to His birth and being brought forth into the world, and both Mary and Joseph would know the name of this One who would be born unto Mary.

What makes this particular thought so incredibly intriguing and captivating is when you think about the fact that Mary knew the name JESUS prior to her actually conceiving the life of the Son of the Highest within her womb, and before she would actually bring forth the child into the world. Mary would be the first one within and upon the earth who would hear and would know the name of the Son of the Highest, and she would keep, guard and treasure that name within her heart and spirit from the time the angel Gabriel made the announcement unto her. Imagine what it was like for Mary to know that the life of the Son of the Highest was growing inside of her and not only knowing what the name of this child was and what it ought to be, but also as she might have possibly spoken that name a number of times during those nine months she carried this child within her womb. Imagine Mary speaking the name of JESUS and even speaking unto JESUS day after day and night after night as she would think about this child which was growing inside of her womb. There are pregnant mothers who will go about through their days reciting and speaking the name of their child, and will even speak directly to the child as though they were physically present before and with them. I can’t help but think about the fact that not only might Mary have spoken the name of Jesus within her heart and within her spirit during those nine months, but she would also speak directly unto the child growing inside of her and calling Him Jesus. I wonder how many times and how often Mary might and must have spoken unto the child growing inside of her and calling the name of the child Jesus. We know that Mary was very much aware of the name of the child, and there is a part of me that can’t help but think about and consider the fact that Mary was undoubtedly one who would faithfully proclaim the name of Jesus unto the child which was growing within and inside of her womb. I can imagine Mary lying in her bed at night rubbing her stomach knowing the life that was growing inside of her and speaking the name of Jesus as she felt that life moving within her. What’s more, is I can’t help but wonder what it must have been like for Mary to feel Jesus move inside of her knowing that what was growing inside of her was the Son of the Highest, and what was moving inside her was the Son of the Highest.

WHAT’S MOVING INSIDE YOU IS THE SON OF THE HIGHEST! WHAT’S GROWING INSIDE YOU IS THE SON OF THE HIGHEST! Oh it is truly something worth thinking about and considering when reading the words found in this portion and passage of Scripture that there might very well have been times when Mary felt Jesus moving inside of her, and perhaps even kicking while He was in her womb. I can’t help but wonder what it must have been like knowing that God was moving inside of you. The thought and idea of Jesus actually moving inside of Mary’s womb brings an entirely different spin on to the reality and concept of Jesus moving within and moving inside of us. Although we do not and although we cannot carry the life of the Messiah and Christ within us as Mary did, we must nonetheless pause and think about what it’s like when we feel the Son of the Highest moving inside of us. What’s more, is that I am sure there were moments when Mary felt the Son of the Highest moving inside of her reminding her that He was growing inside of her, while there might have been other moments when He was entirely and altogether still within her and did not move. I am absolutely convinced that there must have been those moments when the movement of Jesus within the womb of Mary served as a powerful reminder unto her that the life of the Son of the Highest was indeed and was in fact growing inside of her. What’s more, is that at one point—not only would the Son of the Highest move within her, but she would also bear within her body the physical evidence and manifestation of that life growing inside of her. In other words, not only would and could the Son of the Highest move within her, and not only would and could the Son of the Highest grow within her, but so also would her physical body reflect those realities.

The more I think about and consider this particular truth and what is found concerning the life of the Son of the Highest growing within Mary the more I can’t help but be absolutely and completely captivated with and by the fact that there would be the external evidence that the Son of the Highest was growing within her, while there would also be the internal evidence of the Son of the Highest growing within her. In all reality, I would dare say that when we think and speak about the life of the Son of the Highest growing within us there must not only be the inner evidence and manifestation of that life growing within us as He moves within us, but there must also be the outward manifestation of that life within us as the Messiah grows within us and thus alters and transforms our entire being and person. It is the movement of the Son of the Highest within us that serves as the inner manifestation and demonstration of the life that is present within us, while it is the growth of the Son of the Highest that serves as the outward manifestation and demonstration of that life within us. There is not a doubt within my mind that what is so absolutely and critically needed within our hearts and our lives is not only the inner demonstration and manifestation of the Son of the Highest within moving within us, but there must also be the outward demonstration of the Son of the Highest growing within us. THE SON OF THE HIGHEST GROWING WITHIN US AND THE SON OF THE HIGHEST MOVING WITHIN US! I am absolutely and completely convinced that when we think about and consider the truth surrounding the life of the Son of God growing inside the womb of Mary we must needs recognize that there was both an inward witness as well as an outward evidence of that life within her. We have a great need to pay close and careful attention to this, for it forces us to acknowledge and understand the great need for this same inward witness and outward evidence of the life of Jesus growing and moving within us. It is absolutely necessary and imperative that we do not lose sight of this, for I fear that to lose sight of this is to miss out on the incredible importance of the life of the Son of the living God being present within us.

If you are taking the time to read the words found and contained within this writing I feel compelled to call and draw your attention to the fact that as a disciple and follower of Jesus the Christ there must be a diligent effort and work on your end to secure and guard this inner witness and external evidence of the life of the Son of God growing and moving within you. What’s more, is that we must recognize and understand that there might be times within our lives when we do not feel the Son of God moving within us, and yet those moments do not for a single moment mean that He is not still growing inside of us and is not still present within us. Just as a mother who is pregnant with child does not doubt that a life is growing within her just because the child does not move around or kick doesn’t mean that child is still not growing within her. Additionally, we must needs understand that when we think about and consider the life of the Son of the Highest being present within us there is a great need to acknowledge that there is and there will come a time when the evidence of that life inside of us will begin to manifest. With this being said, however, it’s important for us to recognize that we might not see that evidence initially and/or even right away. There is a great need within our hearts and minds to acknowledge and understand the fact that it might take several weeks, if not months for the external evidence of the life of Christ being present within us. This does not mean that we cannot and will not experience Him moving within us, however, it does indeed and does in fact mean that we may not immediately see that outward evidence and manifestation of the life growing inside of us. In addition to this we must come face to face with the fact that just as a mother would guard the life of the child growing within her womb, so also must we guard the life of the Son of God which is growing and increasing within us.

The more we delve into this reality the more we must allow ourselves to come to the place where we realize that the life of the Messiah—the life of the Son of the Highest who is both Christ and Lord—which is growing inside of us must needs be guarded and protected with everything that is within us. Think about how much care a mother who is pregnant with child will take to protect that life growing inside of her, and imagine what it was like and what it must have been like for Mary the mother of Jesus to have the life of the Son of the Highest growing within her. Consider the tremendous responsibility and burden she would have had to carry surrounding the life of the Son of the Highest growing inside of her. That concept of “carrying” a burden is actually something which is truly remarkable when you take the time to consider it, for Mary would indeed “carry” the life of Jesus within her womb for nine months. For nine month the life of the Son of the Highest would be growing inside of her and she would be responsible for doing anything and everything she could to guard and protect it. For nine months the life of the Son of the Highest was present within her womb and was not yet manifested unto the world. This particular truth is actually quite astonishing when you think about it, for the Messiah was concealed and hidden within the womb of Mary until the appointed time would come for her to deliver and bring Him forth, and in addition to this the life of the Messiah would be concealed for eight days until the appointed time according to the Law of the Lord came for Him to be circumcised. Not only this, but the life of the Messiah would be hidden and concealed within Nazareth for thirty years until the appointed time of His showing and revealing had come. For nine months the life of the Messiah would indeed and would in fact be hidden and concealed within the womb of Mary before He would be brought forth into the world, and for thirty years the life of the Messiah would be concealed within the womb of Nazareth until the appointed time came for Him to be publicly revealed at the Jordan River.

We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this, for when we think about the life of the Son of the Highest we must recognize that for nine months the life of the Son of the Highest was concealed within the womb of Mary while He grew within her, and the life of the Son of the Highest was concealed within the womb of Nazareth for thirty years while He would grow into and become a man. In fact, I am absolutely and completely convinced this is what is so significant about what is written and recorded within the final verses of the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by Luke, for Luke would write in two different places that the Son of the living God would grow while living in Nazareth. IN the fortieth verse of the second chapter Luke writes “and the child grew, and waxed strong  in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon Him” (Luke 2:40). In the fifty-second verse of the same chapter we find Luke writing how “Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man” (Luke 2:52). JESUS GREW! JESUS INCREASED! We must needs recognize and acknowledge these two distinct realities—particularly and especially when we think about and consider the words which John the Baptist spoke when his disciples came unto him speaking about how Jesus was baptizing more disciples than he himself was. The words and response which John gave to his disciples are such which must be carefully considered and understood, for they present us with the strong and powerful reality that when we speak about the life of Christ we must understand that the life of Christ must not only grow, but it must also increase. It would be in the fortieth verse of this passage we find how Jesus grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom, while in the fifty-second verse of the same chapter we find the powerful declaration that Jesus increased in wisdom and stature—and not only in wisdom and stature, but also in favour with God and man. It is with this in mind I invite you to consider the following words which are found within the third chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John concerning the words John the Baptist spoke unto his disciples:

After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized. And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized. For John was not yet cast into prison. Then there arose a question between some of John’s disciples and the Jews about purifying. And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him. John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven. Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him. He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. HE MUST INCREASE, BUT I MUST DECREASE. He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all. And what he hath seen and heard that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony. He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him” (John 3:22-36).

The words which are found here in this particular portion of Scripture are incredibly striking and powerful when you take the time to consider them, for with these words John the Baptist emphatically, boldly and unreservedly declares and proclaims unto his disciples that he was not the Christ. What’s more, is that with these words John the Baptist also declared unto his disciples that he needed to decrease and that the Messiah might increase. I am absolutely convinced that we must needs recognize and understand this particular truth and reality, for it calls and draws our attention to the truth surrounding what Luke wrote concerning Jesus in Nazareth and how not only did He grew up, but He also increased. There is not a doubt in my mind that when we think and speak about the life of Jesus the Christ within us we must needs acknowledge the truth that the life of Christ within us must not only increase, but it must also grow. It’s truly something worth thinking about how Jesus didn’t come into the world as a fully grown man, but that He came in the form of an infant—and not only an infant, but would allow Himself to grow within the womb of a virgin. Jesus allowed Himself to be conceived within the womb of a virgin who had never known physical intimacy with a man and even allowed Himself to grow within her. What’s more, is that while there was the initial growth which would take place within the womb of Mary, there would be a secondary growth that would take place in Nazareth. There would be the initial growth which was hidden and concealed within the womb of Mary herself, while there would be a second growth which would be hidden and concealed within the womb of Nazareth. Oh I firmly believe that Nazareth was in and of itself a womb in which Jesus Himself could not only grow, but also increase within the earth before He would be publicly revealed. Just as it would be eight days before man would first hear the name of Jesus, so also would it be thirty years before men outside of Galilee and in the land of Judaea and in the city of Jerusalem would hear the name of Jesus. For thirty years Jesus would abide and dwell as the Word made flesh within the womb of Nazareth, as the time had not yet come for His public revealing and manifestation. Jesus would indeed and would in fact be hidden and concealed within the womb of Mary for nine months until the appointed time came for Him to be brought forth into the world. In a similar manner Jesus would be hidden and concealed within the womb of Nazareth for thirty years as He would grow and increase before the appointed time of the Father for Him to be publicly revealed and manifested at the Jordan River.

I sit here today thinking about and considering how absolutely incredible and astounding this truly is when you allow yourself to truly understand how Jesus would allow Himself to be implanted within the womb of Mary where He would grow for nine months. For nine months the life of Jesus would grow within the womb of Mary hidden and concealed—and not only would the life of Jesus grow hidden and concealed within the womb of Mary for nine months, but it would be a full nine months before the name of Jesus would actually be revealed unto the world. It would be on the eighth day after Jesus was born that Mary and Joseph would circumcise Him, and with that circumcision would come His naming when Mary and Joseph would call Him Jesus. Oh I can’t help but wonder what it was like when and as Mary and Joseph gave the name to Jesus the Christ, and what it was like for them as they spoke His name for the first time unto others. Imagine what it was like when Mary and Joseph were asked what the name of their firstborn son was, and they responded by declaring and proclaiming that his name was Jesus. Imagine those in Nazareth seeing Mary and Joseph with this infant child in the streets, in the synagogue, and in various other places, and when they were asked the child’s name, they would hear Jesus. What’s more, is think about and consider the fact that for thirty years the inhabitants of Nazareth would not only hear the name Jesus, but they would also say and speak the name of Jesus. Moreover, for thirty years they would not only be familiar with Jesus Himself as a person, but they would be familiar with the actual name of Jesus. Oh I would love to know what it was like in heaven when Mary and Joseph proclaimed and pronounced the name of Jesus on the eighth day when He was circumcised. Did all of heaven collectively gasp and sigh when the name Jesus was first spoken by someone other than the angel Gabriel and someone other than the angel of the Lord who appeared unto Joseph in a dream?

Oh I can’t help but find myself absolutely captivated with and by the tremendous truth surrounding the name of Jesus, as well as the growth and increase of Jesus. I can’t help but think about and consider what it must have been like for Mary and Joseph to proclaim the name of Jesus for the first time when He was circumcised, and how from that moment on the name Jesus would begin being spoken—not only on their lips, but also on the lips of those within Nazareth. For thirty years the name of Jesus was spoken by many who lived within the town of Nazareth, and all the while there were those present among them who had absolutely no clue what the name Jesus actually meant—and not only what the name Jesus meant, but also who and what Jesus would become. Even Mary and Joseph marvelled and wondered at Jesus and who and what He would become, for I would dare say they didn’t even truly understand and recognize that which He would do and what He would in fact become in the midst of the earth. There is something truly powerful when you consider the words found within this passage, for the words found and contained her draw and call our attention to the awesome and tremendous truth that for nine months Mary would carry the life of the Messiah within her womb knowing the name of the Messiah, and yet the name of the Messiah wouldn’t be known until eight days after He had been brought forth into the earth. Oh I would absolutely love to know what it was like when the name JESUS was first mentioned and first spoken by Mary and Joseph after the child was circumcised. What was it like when they first spoke the name of Jesus out loud? Scripture is entirely and altogether unclear whether or not they had spoken the name of Jesus to each other prior to the eighth day after He had been brought forth into the earth, and yet there is something uniquely powerful about the name of Jesus being spoken for the very first time—and not only when the name of Jesus was mentioned for the very first time, but also when Mary and Joseph made the declaration concerning the child, saying, “His name is JESUS!”

HIS NAME SHALL BE CALLED JESUS! HIS NAME IS JESUS! THE TREMENDOUS PATH FROM HIS NAME SHALL BE CALLED TO HIS NAME IS CALLED! It is truly something worth thinking about and considering when reading the words found within this passage, for when the angel Gabriel appeared unto Mary he would declare and proclaim unto her that the child’s name would be called JESUS, and when the angel of the Lord appeared unto Joseph by dream during the night a similar message would be proclaimed. How absolutely wonderful it is when thinking about and considering the fact that both Mary and Joseph would both hear the words of the angel declaring how the name of the child would be called Jesus, and yet there would come a point in time when the name of Jesus would no longer just be something that would be in the future, but something that would be in the present. What’s more, is I would dare say there would be a point in time when time would no longer be considered “B.C” or “Before Christ,” for Christ would actually be present in the midst of the earth. There was a period of time when the name JESUS would simply be something they would call the child when He was born to something they would call the child once He arrived. For a period of nine months the name JESUS would be something that would be entirely and altogether in the future tense, and yet there would come a point when the name of Jesus would no longer be in the future tense but would come be manifested in the present tense. Oh pause for a moment and think about what it would have been like for Mary and Joseph to live in the reality of “His name shall be called” to living in the reality and manifestation of “His name is called.” It is truly something worth thinking about and considering when you read these words how Mary and Joseph would spend nine months living in the reality of the name of JESUS being what He would be called until the appointed time would come when it would no longer be about what Jesus would be called to the reality of what Jesus was called.

I sit here today thinking about and considering the words which are found within this portion and passage of Scripture and I am brought face to face with the tremendous reality surrounding the name of Jesus and how the angel Gabriel would show up and proclaim unto Mary how the child’s name would be called JESUS, and for at least nine months Mary would live with that reality of knowing what the name of the child would be. For nine months Mary would know that the name of the child would be Jesus, and for a period of time Joseph would also know what the name of the child would be as the angel of the LORD would reveal unto him the name of JESUS. What makes this all the more interesting when you take the time to think about and consider it is when you read how there would come a point in time when the child would actually be called JESUS. For nine months Mary would live with the child growing inside of her knowing what His name would be, and eight days after the child was brought forth into the world they would transition to the place where His name would not longer be about what it would be, but what it actually was. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this, for it something worth thinking about considering the name of JESUS, and how from the moment His name would be proclaimed by Mary and Joseph that name would begin to be spoken and proclaimed in the midst of Nazareth. For thirty years the name of Jesus would be known only in Nazareth as Nazareth would itself be a place where the life of Jesus would be concealed and hidden until the appointed time ordained by the Father when not only would Jesus Himself be manifested in the midst of the earth, but so also would the name of Jesus be known in the midst of Judaea, in the midst of Galilee and in the midst of Judaea. Oh how absolutely incredibly awesome and powerful it is to consider the fact that on the eighth day after the child was born—not only would He be circumcised according to the Law of the Lord, but His name would be called Jesus.

If there is one thing we must pay attention to when we read the words which are found within this passage it’s just how incredibly beautiful, how incredibly wonderful, and how incredibly precious the name of Jesus must needs be within our hearts and within our souls. There is a great and present need within our hearts and our spirits to love the name of Jesus. Oh permit me to ask you dear reader what the name of Jesus means to you and for you. When you think about and consider your life right now what does the name of Jesus mean to you and for you? When you look back over your life for however long you have lived upon the earth—what has the name of Jesus meant to you and for you? I am completely and utterly fascinated by and with the fact that both Mary and Joseph would experience the reality of the name of Jesus being something which He would be called once He was finally present in the world, and there would come a point in time when they would experience the manifestation and the reality of the name of Jesus being a name He would be called after He was brought forth into the world. Oh what a truly astonishing truth it is when you think about and consider the fact that the name of the living and eternal God would indeed and would in fact be called Jesus, and how that was the name ordained and appointed in heaven. What an incredibly powerful thought it is to think about the angel Gabriel descending from heaven with the name of JESUS on his lips—a name that was ordained and appointed by the living and eternal God. When the angel Gabriel was sent from heaven he would not only be sent unto the virgin who the prophet Isaiah prophesied about, but he would also be sent from heaven to reveal and make known the name of Jesus. Oh I still cannot escape the absolutely wonderful and beautiful truth that the angel Gabriel didn’t merely reveal unto the virgin that she would conceive, but he would also reveal unto the virgin the name of the Son of the Highest. I still cannot escape the incredibly awesome and wonderful truth surrounding the name of the Son of the Highest being revealed unto Mary when she would learn how she would conceive the life of the Son of the Highest within her womb.

As I prepare to bring this writing to a close I find it absolutely necessary and imperative that we pay close and careful attention to the words and language that is found within the final portion of the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative which was written by Luke. There is a great need to think about and consider the truth surrounding the powerful transition that surrounds the narrative of “His name shall be called” to “His name is.” There is not a doubt in my mind that this transition must needs take place within our hearts and our lives as we allow ourselves to move beyond the place of “His name shall be called” to “His name is called.” We must allow ourselves to move to the place where the name of Jesus is more than just a future or distant reality and manifestation to a present reality and demonstration within our hearts and lives. There was a period of nine months when the name of Jesus was something which He would be called and something He would be known by until the time came when He would actually be called Jesus. Eventually there would come a point in time when the name of Jesus wouldn’t be the name of someone who was to come but someone who was actually here and someone who was in the present. Oh stop and think about that for a moment, for there would be a wonderful and powerful moment and transition when the name JESUS wouldn’t merely be the name of someone who was yet to come, but would be the literal name of one who was actually born in the earth. I still cannot help but wonder if the Son was known in heaven by JESUS, or if He wasn’t actually known as JESUS until the angel Gabriel first announced and proclaimed the name unto Mary. There is a part of me that wonders if prior to His laying aside the garments of deity and taking upon Himself the form of human flesh the Son was known as “the Son” or as “the Word,” and it wasn’t until the angel Gabriel came unto Mary and proclaimed and pronounced the name of Jesus that He would actually be known as JESUS.

What makes this all the more intriguing and powerful when you truly take the time to think about it is when you consider the fact that the name of JESUS would be the name countless men and women would use during those days and times. For the religious system the name JESUS was synonymous with vehement hatred, animosity, tension, anger, malice, and so much more, while for the publicans, the sinners, the poor, the destitute, the hurting and the broken the name of JESUS was something so much more. For those who were blind, for those who were deaf, for those who were lame, for those who were crippled, for those who were lepers, for those who were in great need within their lives the name of JESUS was synonymous with hope, with life, with freedom, with healing, with deliverance, and so much more. What’s more is when you think about and consider the fact that the Son wasn’t merely known by the name of JESUS while He was upon the earth, but He is still known as JESUS. The same name which the angel Gabriel proclaimed and pronounced unto Mary would indeed and would in fact be the name men and women would call Him for three and a half years while He was publicly manifested among them in their midst, and it is still the name which we ourselves can call Him. I absolutely love the fact that from the time the angel Gabriel revealed the name which the Son of the Highest would be called it would be present and manifested in the earth, and there would actually be a name which we might call upon. In fact, it was the apostle Peter in the New Testament book of Acts who would wonderfully and powerfully proclaim that there is no other name given in heaven and earth whereby man might be saved. We must needs realize and understand that from the time Jesus was publicly manifested in the midst of the earth and men began calling upon His name even up until this present day there has been one name in the earth which men and women can indeed and can in fact call upon—and not only call upon, but also proclaim and declare within their hearts and lives.

It is truly awesome and powerful to think about the fact that not only did Jesus retain and keep the scars within and upon His physical body when He ascended unto the right hand of the Father, but the Son of the Highest also kept the name JESUS as He is seated at the right hand of the Father, and we have the wonderful privilege and freedom to call His name JESUS. What’s more is that we can indeed and can in fact call upon the name of JESUS at any time—and not only this, but we have something those within His generation didn’t have—the ability to call upon the name of JESUS at any time and in any place because of the person and presence of the Holy Spirit. There is something truly wonderful and powerful about the ability to interact with the person and presence of the Holy Spirit, and how we have the awesome and powerful privilege to call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ at any time and in any place regardless of where we are and what we are going through. We have the awesome and wonderful privilege of taking the name which was revealed unto Mary and Joseph and which was given unto the Son of the Highest and call upon that name at any point in time—and not only call upon the name, but also cultivate the reality and manifestation of that name within our hearts and lives. The underlying question we must needs ask ourselves when we think about and consider this is whether or not we are actually cultivating the name of Jesus within our lives, and whether or not we are calling upon the name of Jesus. Is the name of JESUS truly within our hearts and upon our lips as we not only confess with our mouths the Lord Jesus, but also believe within our hearts that the living God raised Him up from the dead. It is absolutely necessary that we not only call upon the name of the Lord Jesus within our lives, but also cultivate the name of Jesus within our hearts. We have a great and truly powerful privilege, responsibility and honor to cultivate the name of Jesus within our hearts and lives, and to call upon that name any time and anywhere we desire and need to. Oh that we would be those who truly love, value, honor, appreciate, exalt and magnify the name of JESUS who was and still is the Son of the Highest.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s