Summary: Second in a series on Is. 9:6-7 examining the titles given to Jesus, Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God
WONDERFUL COUNSELOR, MIGHTY GOD
I’ve always thought that the naming of children should be taken seriously. As educators, Nelda and I were amazed at the names parents gave some children —names they will live with all their lives. Nelda had a little girl in one kindergarten class named, “Latrina.” She told the mother that she wouldn’t call the child by that name and didn’t think it should be used because of the connotation with “latrines.” That little girl is probably a young mother herself now and may appreciate the unremembered teacher who changed her name.
We lived just 150 miles away from San Francisco in the late 60s and early 70s in the heyday of the hippie movement. When the Haight-Asbury section became more of a high-rent district, many of the hippies moved down the coast to the Monterrey Peninsula, got married and had children. They didn’t name their kids Melissa or Matt, so people in that area grew accustomed to hearing names like Moonbeam, Earth Love, Precious Promise, Time Warp or Spring Fever.
That’s when the kindergarten teachers first met little "Fruit Stand". Every fall the parents would send their kids to school on the bus for the first time. Each child had a clip-on nametag. When Fruit Stand came on the bus with his odd name the teachers tried not to make a big deal of it.
"Would you like to play with the blocks, Fruit Stand?" or "Fruit Stand, how about a snack?" By the end of the day the name didn’t seem any more odd than Sun Ray. They took the kids out to the buses. "Fruit Stand, which is your bus?"
He didn’t answer. That wasn’t too strange. Kids with funny names were often shy about it. So it wasn’t a big deal because the teachers had instructed the parents to write the names of the school bus stops on the back of the nametag. The teacher reached over to Fruit Stand and turned his tag over and there, neatly printed was the name, "Anthony."
When Isaiah prophesied 700 years before Bethlehem, God’s promised baby was given several titles. “His name [is] called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Is. 9:6). These names indicate that His kingdom will be different from any other power known on earth. Last week we looked at the meaning of the child who was born and the son who was given. Today we look at the first two titles: “Wonderful Counselor”, and “Mighty God.”
Where do we get most of our counseling today? I suggest that much, if not most of it comes from emails. I got this email earlier in the week, tweaked it a bit and sent to my emailing friends:
I just want to thank all of you for your educational emails over the past year.
Thanks to you, I no longer open a public bathroom door without using a paper towel.
I can’t use the remote in a hotel room because I don’t know what the last person was doing while flipping through the channels.
I can’t sit down on the hotel bedspread because I can only imagine what has happened on it since it was last washed.
I can’t enjoy lemon slices in my tea or on my seafood anymore because lemon peels have been found to contain all kinds of nasty germs including feces.