Jesus=God? Part 4: Other Names

The Old Testament contains well over 100 direct and specific prophecies regarding Jesus. One well known prophecy discloses a special name for him: Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. (Is 7:14 ESV) The meaning of this name is given by Gabriel when he says to Mary, Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel”(which means, God with us). (Mt 1:23 ESV) It is important to note that his name was not Immanuel, rather his name would be called Immanuel. Jesus would be recognized as God among us.

Jesus is frequently called the Son of God. The second Psalm speaks at length about the Son of God, also called the Anointed and King. I will tell of the decree. YAHWEH said to me, “You are my son. Today I have become your father. (Ps 2:7 WEB) This Psalm tells earth’s rulers to obey this Anointed King who is Son of God and warns of destruction for those who refuse. When Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist: Behold, a voice out of the heavens said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” (Mt 3:17 WEB). The phrase son of God is used in certain places in scripture to refer to other men from Adam to Solomon, but the context of Ps 2 matches the unique character of the Son of God which Matthew writes about. Perhaps the most beloved verse in the bible is John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (KJV) Most modern translations have abandoned the English word “begotten” in scripture. This word signifies the essence of coming forth. Jesus came forth from the Father. Although each human is a unique being with his or her own soul, we are all begotten of our parents. We receive the genetics of our parents. We also receive our nature as a created kind with a corrupt sin-nature. Jesus stands apart from all of the children of Adam because he was given life by a human mother and the divine Holy Spirit of God. He inherits physical flesh from his mother, but he inherits his sinless-nature from his Father, God Almighty. He is begotten of God because he came forth out of God in heaven, not through a human father.

The term “Son of Man” is used of Jesus about as often as “Son of God.” For example, Mk 14:62 reads: Jesus said, “I am. You will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of the sky.” (ESV) Son of Man is also rooted in the Old Testament and carries both conventional and messianic meaning depending on context. For example, God refers to Ezekiel the prophet as “son of man” about 93 times. Elsewhere the phrase “son of man” is prophetic of Christ: Let your hand be on the man of your right hand, on the son of man whom you made strong for yourself. (Ps 80:17 WEB) Daniel writes: I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him. And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed. (Dan 7:13-14 ESV) Daniel says that this one is like the son of man. Son of man describes the appearance, not the nature, of the one given dominion and glory and the eternal kingdom. John also writes of seeing in visions one who looked like a son of man (Rev 1:13, 14:14) and who identified himself by description as Jesus (Rev 1:17-18). As son of man, Jesus is also described as authorized to forgive sin (Lk 5:24), Lord of the Sabbath (Mk 2:28), ascended to and descended from heaven (Jn 1:51), nowhere to rest (Mt 8:20), must be lifted up (Jn 3:14), power to command angels (Mt 13:41), will rise from the dead (Mk 9:9), and comes to seek and save the lost (Lk 19:10).

Isaiah identifies Jesus by several names: 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. (Is 9:6 ESV) This one short passage states that this individual is born as a child and would govern. Isaiah gives this ruler the names Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of peace. It is extremely important to grasp that this coming child who would govern would also be known as Mighty God and Everlasting Father. Jesus frequently spoke of his Father as someone else, yet here we see Jesus identified as the Father. While we can see in hindsight the distinction in personhood, there is no distinction in character or position between Jesus and the Father. Jesus is the Son of God and so he is God (Jn 1:1-3). We must recall that God is a title whereas YHWH is the personal name used in the Old Testament (Hebrew) and Jesus (Yeshua) is the personal name used in the New Testament (Greek). Many other counselors are mentioned in scripture, but only the coming son would be called a wonderful counselor. The last name used by Isaiah here is prince of peace. This is the only occurrence of this exact name, however Paul refers to Jesus as Lord of Peace (2 Th 3:16). New Testament associates Jesus with peace more than 20 times. Ezekiel also alludes prophetically to Jesus as a prince (Ez 34:24). Daniel also prophesies the coming of an anointed one (Christ) who would be a prince after the rebuilding of the temple (Dan 9:25-26).

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About Lance Ponder

Christian author of "Ask James one"; public speaker; husband and father. Available to speak on Creation and the Gospel.
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10 Responses to Jesus=God? Part 4: Other Names

  1. Michael Knudsen says:

    Great use of the scriptures, Lance, in establishing who Jesus is. To me it’s always been amazing how so many people call Jesus a “great teacher of truth”, yet deny his divinity. That doesn’t really work, because by both words and actions he declared himself divine. You can’t have it both ways. If he’s not God, he was a liar and delusional, and thus everything else he taught is suspect. I choose to believe he spoke truth in ALL his declarations, including “I am the ressurrection and the life”.

  2. Lance Ponder says:

    Tina, Thanks.

    Michael, Amen.

  3. Todd Beal says:

    Lance, I have read Ezekiel 34:24 many times, but take it to literally mean David, not Jesus. If instead this does refer to Jesus, and not David, where does David symbolically fit into this prophecy?

    • Lance Ponder says:

      That passage in Ezekiel can’t be a literal reference to David. David lived more than 4 centuries before Ezekiel, yet Ezekiel speaks of “my servant David who shall be prince among them.” Jesus is often symbolized by David, especially among the post-Davidic prophets.

  4. Lance Ponder says:

    Connections between David and Jesus… There are several. Here’s a few that come to mind…

    Jer 33:15 In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David, and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.

    Jer 23:5 Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.

    Jer 30:9 But they shall serve the LORD their God and David their king, whom I will raise up for them.

    Is 22:22 And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David. He shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.

    Ez 34:23-24 And I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the LORD, will be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them. I am the LORD; I have spoken.

    Ez 37:24-27 My servant David shall be king over them, and they shall all have one shepherd. They shall walk in my rules and be careful to obey my statutes.25 They shall dwell in the land that I gave to my servant Jacob, where your fathers lived. They and their children and their children’s children shall dwell there forever, and David my servant shall be their prince forever.26 I will make a covenant of peace with them. It shall be an everlasting covenant with them. And I will set them in their land and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in their midst forevermore.27 My dwelling place shall be with them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

    Read Hosea 3. Its a short chapter. It tells of a time when Israel will be restored and David will (future tense) be king in the latter days. If you’re not familiar with Hosea, read the first three chapters for context. Hosea’s wife represents fallen Israel specifically and fallen (unfaithful) humanity generally who will be restored.

    Zech 12 speaks at some length of a coming house of David. Zech speaks very prophetically of Jesus.

    David is specifically mentioned in both genealogies of Jesus in the NT, though they differ in routes from David to Jesus.

    Jesus is identified as “son of David.” Mt 9:27, 12:23, 15:22, 20:30, 21:9, Mk 10:47, Lk 18:38, Jn 7:42

    Jesus associated with coming kingdom of David. Mk 11:10

    Jesus identified by David as Lord. Mt 22:42-45, Lk 20:41-44, Acts 2:34

    Paul preaches of Jesus fulfilling Davidic prophecy in Acts 13.

    John speaks of Jesus’ relationship with David: Rev 3:7, 5:5, 22:16.

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