Sermon Illustrations

The Old Testament prophets were often commanded to give their children names that described God’s dealings with Israel.

Most Old Testament names that incorporate either the syllable “el” or the letter “Y” (sometimes “J” in English) incorporate the name of God. For example, Joshua (Hebrew Y’hoshuah) means “God saves”; Eli means “my God”; Daniel (Hebrew Dani-El ) means “God is my judge”; … Zechariah (Hebrew Zechar-Yah) means “the Lord remembers”; Isaiah (Hebrew Yeshayahu) means “salvation of the Lord.”

When the angel told Joseph that Mary was to be the mother of the Messiah, he said of the child, “Thou shalt call his name Yeshua (Salvation), for he shall save his people from their sins.” The name was commanded as assurance that this indeed would be Israel’s Holy One. Not only does that name mean “salvation,” it means “God saves.” Not only was the Messiah to be God’s instrument of salvation, he was to be God in the flesh, reconciling his lost creation to himself.

Old Simeon in the Temple knew that. As he cradled the infant Yeshua in his arms, he prayed, “Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace according to thy word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation (thy Yeshua) which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.”

Yeshua is the Jewish way to say Jesus. Yeshua is the Jewish way to salvation for all people. [Jews for Jesus]

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