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“Call His Name Jesus”
“Behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:20-21)
The angel’s message to Joseph was a message of grace, redemption, and salvation to sinners. The Lord of glory came into this world as the Son of Man. As the Son of God he was not born but given. As the Son of Man he was born through the womb of a chosen virgin (Isaiah 9:6). By God’s command, he was named, “JESUS,” Savior, because he was sent of God to save his people from their sins. What he is called, that he is — Jesus, our Savior.
The Lord Jesus came into the world to save “his people” from their sins. Those he came to save were his people before he came to save them, his by eternal election. There are some people in this world, an elect multitude, chosen in him before the world began, who are peculiarly and distinctively his people, the objects of his everlasting love, chosen in him unto salvation (Ephesians 1:2-6; 2 Thessalonians 2:13),and given to him as sheep to the shepherd (John 6:39).
It is the office, work, and responsibility of Christ, the Son of God, as the God-man our Mediator, as the Surety of his people, and as Jehovah’s righteous Servant, to save all who were given to him in the covenant of grace (John 10:16-18). And save them he shall. The Lord Jesus Christ is an almighty, effectual Savior. The angel said to Joseph, “He shall save his people from their sins!” He saves his people from the penalty of their sins by his blood atonement (Romans 3:24-26), from the dominion of their sins by his regenerating Spirit (John 3:5-8; Romans 6:18), from the being of their sins when he takes them out of this world (John 14:1-3; Romans 7:24-25), and from all the evil consequences of their sins in resurrection glory (1 Corinthians 15:51-56). It is written of him, “He shall not fail!” — “He shall save his people from their sins!”
“Jesus” is our Savior’s Mediatorial name. It is the same as Joshua in the Old Testament. Jesus is our Jehovah Savior, Jehovah our Redeemer, Jehovah our Deliverer, Jehovah our Salvation. — “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).
“The name of Jesus is so sweet, I love its music to repeat;
It makes my joys full and complete, the precious name of Jesus!
‘Jesus,’ O how sweet the name! ‘Jesus,’ every day the same;
‘Jesus,’ let all saints proclaim its worthy praise forever!’
“Jesus” is the name of encouragement and hope for guilty, heavy-laden sinners. Sinners may draw near and come to God, with confident hope of finding mercy, grace, and forgiveness through faith in Jesus Christ (John 3:16-17).
“Jesus” is the name of him who is peculiarly sweet and precious to believers (1 Peter 2:7). “Thy name is as ointment poured forth” (Song of Solomon 1:3). We breathe our Savior’s name in prayer, trusting his blood, his righteousness, his grace, his power, and his intercession (Trusting him!), and have peace with God. Calling on his name, we are saved, justified, forgiven of all sin, and forever accepted with God.
“How sweet the name of Jesus sounds in a believer’s ear!
It soothes his sorrows, heals his wounds,
And drives away his fear!”