By Clinton D. Hamilton
“Jesus” was a common name among families in days of both the Old and New Testaments. The Hebrew form of the word was Johoshua; the Greek form was Jesus. “Jehovah is salvation” is the meaning of the word. This meaning of the term explains why our Lord was given the name: “And she shall bring forth a son; and thou shalt call his name JESUS; for it is he that shall save his people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21). Jesus is the name by which He was known and the meaning of the name expresses His mission among men. But there is something else about this Jesus that deserves our attention.
By the mouth of David, it was stated that some one’s soul would not be left in Hades, nor would this Holy One see corruption (Psa. 16:10; Acts 2:27). This could not have referred to David personally for he died and his tomb remained with the people; David saw corruption. But about what was he talking? Inspiration answers the question in these words, “Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that of the fruit of his loins he would set one upon his throne; he foreseeing this spake of the resurrection of the Christ, That neither was he left unto Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption” (Acts 2:30-31). David’s words were really a prophecy about one who came through his own lineage, Jesus (Rom. 1:3-4). The prediction concerned the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. His resurrection is the great proof of His deity.
Which person did God raise from the dead in fulfillment of these words? Hear the word of God: “This Jesus did God raise up, whereof we are all witnesses” (Acts 2:32). “This Jesus” was of Nazareth, “a man approved of God unto you by mighty works and wonders and signs which God did by him in the midst of you, even as ye yourselves know; him, being delivered up by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye by the hand of lawless men did crucify and slay” (Acts 2: 22-23). No confusion existed as to which Jesus was under consideration. Those alive at the time of the resurrection knew which one was raised. Witnesses had seen Him following His resurrection and could testify as to what they had seen. There is nothing wrong with the nature of the testimony, or evidence, by which one arrives at the fact of the resurrection of Christ.
The great sign of Christ’s deity was His resurrection. “There shall no sign be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet: for as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale; so shall the Son of man be three days 2nd three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matt. 12:39-40).
What other significance is there connected with the resurrection so far as we are concerned? “Let all the house of Israel therefore know assuredly, that God hath made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom ye crucified” (Acts 2:36). Lord means master, ruler; Christ means Messiah, anointed. What is the point? This Jesus who was born of Mary, lived in Nazareth, and was crucified by lawless men was raised from the dead by God for the purpose of being Lord and anointed Redeemer of all men. This truth should strike the heart of every person with profound reverence for the Christ and with joy untold for the great promise of life through Him.
Those that were convicted of the truths taught by the apostles, realizing that Jesus was both Lord and Christ, wanted to know what to do. The answer came without hesitation: “Repent ye, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ unto the remission of your sins; and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38). Those that gladly heard the word were baptized; Christ was sanctified as Lord in their hearts. Is He in yours? If He is not, make Him such.
Truth Magazine VI: 4, pp. 19