Have you ever stopped to think about the deeper meaning of the birth of Jesus Christ? Although many people, even unbelievers, have heard the story of Jesus’ birth, its real significance may be missed because of that familiarity with the “story” aspect.
The birth of Jesus Christ—a momentous event
The birth of Christ was not the ordinary birth of an ordinary man. It was the birth of the most unique Person in history. The birth of Jesus Christ was the incarnation of God Himself. In other words, the very God became a man. The significance of this is profound and will take all eternity for us to appreciate. The conception and birth of Jesus Christ was the mingling of God with humanity. Such a thing had never occurred before.
In the entire universe, the name Jesus is a special name. How special? Philippians 2:9-11 tells us that God highly exalted Jesus and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, that in the name of Jesus every knee should bow and every tongue should openly confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.
In addition to the name Jesus, we can find many other names in the New Testament for our Lord. Each is rich in meaning, communicating a particular aspect of what He is to us.
In this post, besides the name Jesus, we’ll cover four other names for Jesus from the books of Matthew and John. Seeing what these names mean will increase our appreciation for this wonderful Person and enhance our experience of Him.
When we think of a shepherd and his sheep, a lovely pastoral scene may come to mind, and we see sheep feeding safely in a green pasture as their shepherd watches over them nearby. We may feel envious of the sheep, peacefully grazing without any worries. But we believers actually do have the most wonderful Shepherd—our Lord Jesus.
We’ll see in this post nine ways Jesus has been and continues to be our Shepherd.
1. Jesus our Shepherd gave His life for us
God was in the heavens, holy and unapproachable by us fallen, sinful human beings. But two thousand years ago, God became a man, the man Jesus. The Lord Jesus lived a perfect, sinless life on earth, unlike any other person. He expressed God to humanity every place He went, with every action He took, and with every word He spoke. He ministered to people, full of compassion for the lost sheep of the world.
In John 10:11, before His death on the cross, Jesus told people what He would do: “I am the good Shepherd; the good Shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.” Jesus the good Shepherd
In 2 Corinthians 13:5, the apostle Paul asks the Corinthian believers a question: “Or do you not realize about yourselves that Jesus Christ is in you?” We might find this phrase, “Jesus Christ is in you” surprising, or perhaps we just read over it without thinking too much about its significance. But what does this phrase mean? And what is its importance for our Christian lives today?
In saying, “Jesus Christ is in you,” Paul wasn’t speaking poetically or metaphorically. He truly meant that Jesus Christ is literally, practically dwelling within the believers. Many other verses in the Word of God confirm the fact that the Lord Jesus Christ actually dwells in His believers.
We too, like the Corinthians, need to realize this fact about ourselves. Christ is not merely outside of us, a Helper in our time of need, but He dwells in us, living in and with us all the time.
Recently, a blog reader asked us, “What does it mean to love God with all your heart?” Since this is an excellent and important question, one that many of us may have asked ourselves, we’ll respond here with a full post.
Mark 12:30 says,
“And you shall love the Lord your God from your whole heart and from your whole soul and from your whole mind and from your whole strength.”
Briefly speaking, this verse means that God wants us to love Him with our whole being.
What does the New Testament mean when it says “life”? For instance, when the Lord Jesus said in John 10:10, “I have come that they may have life and may have it abundantly,” what did He mean? Did He mean He would help us to have a better human life, that He would enrich our life, or improve our life?
If we want to know what the New Testament means by “life,” we need to look at the word as it appears in the original Greek language. In the Greek language, three different words—bios, psuche, and zoe—are translated as “life” in English, and each has a different meaning. Here are some examples of where each is used:
Did you know the Bible speaks of something called transformation? It’s found in these two verses in the New Testament:
2 Corinthians 3:18: But we all with unveiled face, beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord Spirit.
Romans 12:2: And do not be fashioned according to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of the mind that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and well pleasing and perfect.
So what does it mean for us as believers to be transformed? And how can we experience transformation in our Christian life?
The terms soul and spirit have been discussed at length throughout philosophy, literature, and religion. Even scientists have ventured remarks about the soul. Often, though, soul and spirit are interpreted to mean the same thing and end up being used interchangeably.
This can lead to the question, “Is there a difference between the soul and the spirit, and does it really matter if there is?”