Despite it only being October, we are nearing the season of Advent, of preparation for the coming of Christ. Little manger scenes and red ribbons are flooding the aisles of Target. Before we know it, “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” will playing over the airwaves and everyone will be sharing the latest Pentatonix Christmas video. The beauty of Advent will be nearly overlooked for the beauty of the manger.
Advent is called a time of, “already, not yet.”
We will all wrestle through the already aspect by jumping straight ahead to His arrival without preparing our hearts and remembering the longing and preparation that all of creation undertook before His arrival. We leap right over the Advent season and land somewhere in the overwhelming busyness of Christmas.
But we also mourn the world and yearn for His final coming. Longing for His final arrival, we wonder what is to come when Lord Jesus returns.
Let’s tackle both of these problems head on by studying the names of our Lord.
Join me this Advent as I journey through the names of Jesus and what they mean to us today, as we wait for Him to come again and prepare to celebrate His entry into the world through the womb of a virgin in the humble town of Bethlehem all those years ago.
Even before His birth was announced to Mary by the angel Gabriel, the names of Jesus were whispered by the prophets. For centuries, His coming was foretold and we were given glimpses of the beauty and love that would appear in that manger in Bethlehem.
“For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
-Isaiah 9:6, ESV
Before we knew the Christ child, God revealed His name through the prophet Isaiah. And we trembled with anticipation.
Throughout Biblical accounts of the birth of Christ, we are given glimpses over and over again of who He is through His names.
The Light of the World.
The Prince of Peace.
The Way, the Truth, and the Life.
The Son of God.
Each and every one of these names is infused with great meaning to us today, giving us a new hope and love for our Savior. When we learn His names, when we understand in our hearts and not just our heads who this God-Man was, we embrace more fully the truth and beauty of our salvation.
Just as learning our earthly friends’ names shows our love for them, so does learning the names of Jesus demonstrate that He is captivating our hearts.
His Name Shall Be Called will be released as an ebook November 2017 as my Christmas gift to you. It is my deep hope and prayer that these words lead your heart down the winding road to the manger where, on Christmas morning, we will find the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.
In the hustle and bustle of the season, seek Jesus. Don’t let Him become overshadowed by the cookie exchanges and decorating. Use this season to press deeper into who He is and what He has done for your life.
His promises remain.
He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. His words, who He is, are as relevant to your life today as it was when Isaiah foretold of His birth and when the angels announced it to the shepherds. Meet Him right where you are this Advent season.