What Does the Name of Jesus Mean? - Radical

What Does the Name of Jesus Mean?

What does it mean when we say the name of Jesus? Is there a special meaning to his name? In this article, Pastor David Platt explains that the name of Jesus means “the Lord saves” and is shorthand for the gospel message. Since Jesus saved humanity through his life and death, he lives up to his name and offers salvation to humanity. Pastor Platt explains that when we say the name of Jesus, we are declaring the saving power of Jesus, thus acknowledging the core of the gospel story. We are reminded that we are sinners in need of a savior and that we cannot save ourselves.

  1. The Gospel Shorthanded
  2. The Power of His Name

Watch the full message of No One Like Jesus

Jesus is the only One who can save us from our sin and the judgment we deserve. Mark 1:1: “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus….”

What Does the Name of Jesus Mean?

Do you know what his name means? It literally means “the Lord saves.” In Matthew’s account of Jesus’ life, God tells Joseph, “You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). There is no one else who can do this. 

Listen really closely here, particularly if you are new to church or not yet a Christian, because this is the “big picture” story of the Bible. We have all been created by God, formed and fashioned by God himself, for a relationship with God. It’s what you were made for. But we have all sinned against God. We have all turned aside from God’s ways to our own ways. It looks different in each one of our lives, but our sin has separated us from God. Now if we die in this state of separation from God, then we will spend eternity separated from God in judgment that we deserve for our sin. 

God Has Sent Jesus to Save

But the gospel—the good news of the Bible—is that God saves. God has sent Jesus Christ to die on a cross for our sin, to rise from the grave in victory over sin, so that we don’t have to experience the judgment we deserve . . . if we trust in Jesus. There is no one else who can save us from our sin. 

Think about it: you can’t save yourself from your sin. Like Sheila, who I mentioned earlier, no matter how much good you or I might try to do, we can’t cover up the fact that we have sinned against God. Look around you. Who in this world is going to save you from sin when everyone around you is a sinner? Jesus Christ is the only one who can save us from our sin and the judgment we deserve.

David Platt

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder of Radical.

David received his Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the author of Don’t Hold Back, Radical, Follow MeCounter CultureSomething Needs to ChangeBefore You Vote, as well as the multiple volumes of the Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary series.

Along with his wife and children, he lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area.


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