Summary: Christmas sermon.
What’s in a name?
Intro: One of the most difficult times I think we had in pre-child birth days, especially with Regan, was in picking a name.
When we had the ultrasound done it was probably about a week or two too early and when the doctor looked he said, “Looks like a girl...no wait, maybe a boy. Nurse, what do you think?”
So, needless to say we had a lot of green and yellow when Regan joined us.
Since we didn’t know the gender of the baby we had to choose names for both a boy and a girl...seems simple enough, right?
But it turned out to be a bit easier than than what I expected.
For a girl we chose Haley Meshelle, Haley coming from a play on Brig’s mom’s maiden name, Hale, and Meshelle just because we thought it sounded good together.
For a boy we chose Logan Montet, we just liked the name Logan and Montet was in honor of my grandfather on my mother’s side...his last name.
Well, all was going well until for like a 3 week span when we got the Seminary newsletter at Southern every little girl born was a Haley, a Kaylee or something similar...so Brigitte looked at me and said, “We need to think of something else.”
We thought long and hard for a while and we had nothing until one day I came home from work and she was sitting in her comfy preggers chair and said, “How about Regan?”
Being a hard core conservative and life long Republican I said, “Yes!” and Regan it was...but the middle name wasn’t decided on and we still didn’t know if we were having a girl or boy.
When August 26, 1997 came around we found we had a Regan and not a Logan, but no middle name...and after a REALLY long labor the last thing Brigitte wanted to do was pick a middle name.
I think I might have been the one to say, “How about Meshelle...Regan Meshelle?”
And so it was.
And since that day, she has been the best Regan I know of and that name just fits her like a “T”.
The power of a name, right?
But what is in a name?
Well, a name can mean a lot...as we will see this morning.
Read Isaiah 9:6 and pray.
The prophet Isaiah penned these words we just read, his name in Hebrew means, “The Lord is Salvation”, and it comes from the same Hebrew root for the name of Jesus, Yeshuah.
Born some where between 770-760 BC, it is estimated that this book was written some 30 years later...at least 730 years before the birth of Christ.
Isaiah begins by saying, “For...”, three little letters to begin a sentence that is the foundation for great expectations.
He goes on to say, “unto us a child is given...”.
The understanding here is that the birth of the Messiah was to be first of all for the Jews, and then for the Gentiles.
This was confirmed on the night Christ was born when the angels proclaimed in Luke 2:11
Jesus was born as the King of the Jews, the promised Messiah, the deliverer who was not coming to simply free them from a physical captivity...but from the spiritual captivity that all mankind was under.
And we are also the beneficiaries of that great gift.
Of course the Apostle Paul also mentioned in Romans 1:16...
This child though, notice what it says in Isaiah 9:6, “a Son will be given...”
This Child is God’s gracious gift to all of us, to which no man has any claim.
His Father is the heavenly Father...and the curse of man’s sin is not upon Him.
That is why His name is Jesus, Yeshuah...salvation.
And that is what I want us to consider, what is in a name.
The third statement of our verse says, “And His name shall be called...”
This is not just what He is called, but relates to the essential characteristics that will be seen in Him.
In the Old Testament Hebrew tradition a name was so much more than something you called some body…it had meaning.
In many cases a Hebrew name not only described the person but also predicted what his or her life would be like.
In the Old Testament book of Isaiah the prophet foretold the coming of a Child, born of a virgin who apparently would change the world…we know that Child to be Jesus Christ, the Messiah.
Isaiah goes on to tell us exactly what He would be called, and I want us to consider that this morning.
We are told that the Messiah would be called…
That word “Wonderful” is pretty unique, it is “Pehleh” in the Hebrew and is only found 12 times in the entirety of the OT; one other time in Isaiah and 7 times in the Psalms.