“Many different titles are used in the Old Testament to draw our attention to a particular function of the redeeming work of Jesus, the Son of God and Son of Man.”
Shakespeare’s Juliet asks, “What is in a name?” She loved Romeo, regardless of his surname. Despite her wishes to the contrary or her desire to minimize the significance, Romeo was always going to be a Montague. In Scripture, names mean something. They matter. The names, or titles, God used to reveal himself communicated particular truths to his people. This is acutely evident in the Old Testament, but also present in the New. Joseph received specific instructions from the angel of the Lord to name the child born of the virgin, Jesus, for he shall save his people from there sins (Matthew 1:21). This announcement was made in order that it might be fulfilled what was previously prophesied by Isaiah, “Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23). Name Him Jesus because he will save his people from their sins. Call him Emmanuel because he is God with us.
As we have been celebrating advent, I have been meditating on the names used to describe the Person and Word of the Messiah. It is surprising how many different titles are used in the Old Testament to draw our attention to a particular function of the redeeming work of Jesus, the Son of God and Son of Man. Over the past few weeks in our worship services I have sought to offer a few brief reflections on the titles of Jesus, the Messiah. There are those titles given to the Savior that are familiar to all; then, there are those titles with which we are not as familiar.
One such title is found in Zechariah 10:4, where we read, “From him shall come the cornerstone, from him the tent-peg, from him the battle bow, from him every ruler – all of them together.” This particular prophecy includes several titles about the saving work of Jesus, but the designation “tent-peg” presents one of the less popular titles of the coming Messiah, but an altogether encouraging one. Zechariah’s ministry was to encourage and exhort the people of God to rebuild the temple and focus on the redemptive plan of God that would culminate in the coming Messiah.