August 8 I Thursday
“Just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord...”
“What’s in a name?” is a famous question from William Shakespeare’s play, Romeo and Juliet. Even though we have two names, and the second is usually our family name, when we look at the name “Jesus Christ,” it does not mean “Christ” is Jesus’s family name. Rather, the name “Christ” is a title, which means, “the anointed one.” Like Queen Elizabeth, we do not call her Elizabeth Queen because “Queen” is not her family name but a title that sets her apart. Similarly, the name “Christ” sets Jesus apart.
Paul puts three titles of Jesus in one sentence to tell us three things we receive when we believe in Him, “just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him” (Colossians 2:6). Firstly, we have received Christ, who is the divine One. Paul goes on to explain, “For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness” (Colossians 2:9-10). Because the fullness of God lives in Christ, and the fullness of Christ lives in us; therefore, everything God is comes to live within us!
Secondly, we have received Jesus, which is His human person. As the Father declared in a unique way at Jesus’s baptism, “This is My Son, whom I love” (Matthew 3:17), Jesus declared to His disciples, “Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). We become sons of God only by being in Christ, so we share His Sonship as John writes, “Yet to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12-13).
Thirdly, we have received Him as Lord, which is His function as reigning Lord. When Jesus Christ becomes our Lord, there are wonderful facets. He forgives us, cleanses us and guarantees us heaven when we die, because we have already received that gift of eternal life. But do not divide Him up as though His lordship was an optional extra. That is who He is and He comes to take that role in our lives.
When we acknowledge and receive Christ Jesus the Lord, we are set apart by declaring that His deity, sonship and lordship lives in our life through His Spirit. The Spirit of the Lord Jesus knows exactly what it is like to be human. He faced all the struggles of humanity and is able to help us. He knows the pressures that we face and He is not helping us from a distance, but lives within our hearts. Now, doesn’t the name “Christ Jesus the Lord” just comfort us?
Prayer: Praise the name of Christ Jesus the Lord, who dwells within me. Thank You that You are not far away but near and close to me.