What is in a name? People I meet for the first time when they learn my name ask me about it. I could make up some elaborate story about it being a family name or my grandfather’s name. Instead, I tell them that my name came from a character on a soap opera that one of my siblings (who shall remain nameless) liked. My sibling pleaded with my parents to name me Draper, and they won. Yes, that is the truth of my name.
As I sat down to write this post as we are leading up to Christmas, I was thinking about the name of Jesus. Jesus is the reason for the season, so the saying goes. As I reflected on this name in my study, I returned to a familiar passage in the Bible, Isaiah 9:6. In this passage, four titles foretold of Jesus.
“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
Notice in the scripture text, “…and his name shall be called…” If you break down that phrase, it reveals a lot about the names.
- “shall be called” is one word in the original language, meaning “to have a quality ascribed to or given a name of a common noun that reflects a quality.”
- “name” is the unit by which others know a person or thing.
Placing the phrase “…his name shall be called…” back together means that the names we will read are not just names but essential qualities that Jesus would have. The names reveal the character of Jesus.
To understand each quality, we need to understand what the original Biblical writer meant when he wrote the names.
- Wonderful Counselor – “wonderful” means of extraordinary nature, making it mysterious or difficult to comprehend. “Counselor” means someone who gives advice about problems. Jesus is our Wonderful Counselor, which is too fantastic for the human mind to understand. We would be wise to listen to the counsel of the Lord.
- Mighty God – “mighty” means having or showing great power in authority. “God” means the supernatural being who originated and rules over the universe.
- Everlasting Father – “Everlasting” means lasting forever. “Father” is a male parent.
- Prince of Peace – “Prince,” means the son of a royal family. “Peace” means harmonious relations and freedom from disputes
The qualities that Jesus was to have and that he had, and that he still has reveal the beautiful character of Jesus. Which of those names is Jesus to you right now? Who in your life needs to hear one of the names of Jesus this Christmas season?
Remember that Jesus is the reason for the season. Allow these names to bring joy and peace to your life this Christmas Season. I pray you find rest and peace in Jesus Christ this Christmas season.