If you trust someone’s character, it’s much easier to follow their commands, even when they’re difficult.
Whether you’re a manager, coach, parent or spouse, if you have character problems, you can be sure people will have a tougher time following your direction, rules or guidance.
Jesus has more than 50 names in Scripture, and each name reveals a particular aspect of His character that can spur us to sit confidently under His leadership over our lives.
As author Jen Wilkins has said, “God has a closet filled with infinite secrets about Himself, but it contains only priceless treasures, no skeletons.”
You won’t find a scandal lurking underneath the surface. Jesus’ story is spotless, and He lives up to His names as our perfect paragon.
Jesus is the Greek translation of the Hebrew name “Yeshua,” meaning “Yahweh saves” or “the Lord is salvation.” Jesus was a common name among Jews in ancient times, hence why He was called “Jesus of Nazareth” to distinguish Him from others. However, His name is the only name by which we can be saved from sin and death.
Here are some other names of Jesus and what they mean.
This is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew term “Messiah.” It means “anointed” and is a term applied to the priests who were anointed with holy oil.
In the Old Testament, people were anointed or set apart for positions of priest, prophet and king. Thus, Christ is not Jesus’ last name, but His title, role or office, as the long-expected Messiah. He is the Anointed One with a special, God-ordained purpose.
Though the Jews were anticipating the Messiah to overcome Roman oppression by exercising political and military control, Jesus’ mission was to solve the problem of sin and our separation from God.
The Good Shepherd
Charles Spurgeon once said, “He will not travel at such a rate as to overdrive the lambs. He has tender consideration for the poor and needy.”
While we could write a long list of things sheep lack, it’s more beneficial to lean on the beautiful truth that Christ is our Good Shepherd. We can either look at everything we’re not as sheep or look at everything He is as our Good Shepherd.
He sacrificed His life for us. He protects, heals and guides us. If we try to navigate life without a Shepherd, it won’t end well.
Everything that passes through Christ and into our lives—even when it doesn’t make sense—is good. “Good” is defined by the Good Shepherd and not our limited frame of reference.
The Great High Priest
Jesus is referred to as our Great High Priest in the Book of Hebrews. There’s a lot of Old Testament context behind this name, but it’s important to highlight that He put an end to the Levitical system of laws and animal sacrifices.
According to the old covenant, only a priest could enter into the Holy of Holies; however, Jesus made each of us a temple, and His presence now dwells within all those who follow Him.
Alpha and Omega
These are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. Among Jewish rabbis, it was common to use the first and the last letters of the Hebrew alphabet to represent the whole of anything from beginning to end.
Jesus has always been and always will be. And He will return to renew all things. As our Alpha and Omega, everything in-between is bearable for us.