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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Grin and Grow with Kathy 02/07/20

The Name above All Names

Love now as you want to love someday. Why wait?

STORY: In the Books!

I just celebrated a book launch party for my new release, The Grin Gal’s Guide to Joy. It’s such a privilege to get to fiddle with words in a way that makes a difference in the lives of others. I always like to think of Jesus as an author, too. Today’s study shows Jesus is author and finisher of our faith. He writes the stories of our lives. I’m glad he is the originator and the completer of my faith. Let’s look at some of his other names.

STUDY: Jesus Is All

Author and Finisher of Our Faith

Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:2 NKJV)
  • What three things are listed as the joy set before Jesus? I can see sitting next to Papa God on the throne as great joy. But how is it joyful to endure the cross? How can he be joy-filled when he bore our shame?
  • Jesus was able to tap into joy despite the cross because his eyes were on the end goal, being with his Father, and paying for our sin to restore our relationship with God. Here’s how the Message paraphrase words this passage: “Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever.”

Sacrifice for Our Sins

This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. (1 John 4:10 NLT)
  • 1 John 4:19 adds to this thought by saying God loved us first. He initiated the love relationship with us. Romans 5:8 goes on to say he showed great love for us while we were still sinners and sent his Son to die for us.
  • Knowing this great love, how does it impact you when you think of Jesus’ willingness to pay for our sins?
  • In the Old Testament, what was the purpose of the sin sacrifices? Place that significance and symbolism on Jesus, as the sacrifice for our sins. Take a moment to thank him for this great love and this great sacrifice.

Head of the Church

God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church. (Ephesians 1:22 NLT)
  • What has God put Christ in charge of? What does his authority over this mean?
  • How does it benefit the church to have Christ as the head over all things?
  • How does it benefit you individually to have Christ as the head over you? I have found it is easier in principle than in practice. We tend to want to be in charge of our own lives. It’s hard to yield control to Jesus.

Lion of the Tribe of Judah

But one of the twenty-four elders said to me, “Stop weeping! Look, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the heir to David’s throne, has won the victory. He is worthy to open the scroll and its seven seals.” (Revelation 5:5 NLT)
  • What hope for us, to know one day we will all be able wipe away our tears and rejoice in the victory won by The Lion of the tribe of Judah!
  • What significance is there in calling Jesus The Lion of the tribe of Judah?
  • Think about his worthiness for a while. What qualifies Jesus to be worthy?

Lord of Lords and King of Kings

“Together they will go to war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will defeat them because he is Lord of all lords and King of all kings. And his called and chosen and faithful ones will be with him.” (Revelation 17:14 NLT)
  • We have looked at Jesus as Lamb in a previous blog article. Now let’s ramp it up a notch. Jesus has the preeminence above all other lords and kings. If there’s anyone you’ve mentally given extra clout—Jesus supersedes them all.
  • Knowing the first sentence in this verse causes the second sentence to have even more impact. It’s a wow-moment for sure. What does it mean to you personally, to know you will be with him if you are one of his followers?

Faithful and True

Then I saw heaven opened, and a white horse was standing there. Its rider was named Faithful and True, for he judges fairly and wages a righteous war. (Revelation 19:11 NLT)
  • Imagine Jesus on the white horse. What is this rider’s name?
  • How does Jesus create a righteous war? What elements factor in?

Name Above all other Names, Lord

Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:9-11 NLT)
  • Prior to this passage, chapter 2 shows how Jesus laid aside the benefits of being God (equal status), humbled himself, and became human. He lived and died a selfless obedient life. This principle is what Philippians 2:9-11 is referring to when it says, “therefore.”
  • Knowing Jesus’ human and humble position and standing on earth, what did God do when Jesus returned to heaven?
  • How does giving Jesus the name above all other names elevate his place of highest honor?
  • What is the difference between Jesus being Christ and Jesus being Lord?
  • How do you think all of this glorifies God the Father?

STEPS:

  1. Live now what you will live then. How will you live out your calling with faithfulness even more because of who Jesus is and because you anticipate spending eternity with him?
  2. Love now as you will love then. Knowing Jesus as all these names can stimulate a deeper relationship before you ever meet him in heaven. You can meet him right here on earth.

Copyright © 2020 Kathy Carlton Willis, used with permission.

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