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The Secret Name of Jesus Christ

To go deeper in your journey with Christ check out my new book Understanding Who You Are: A Survey of 21st Century Christian beliefs which is now on sale. Available in paperback (Canada or USA) and eBook! Get your copy today and discover not just your purpose but learn how you can build the Kingdom of God here on the Earth.


 

As Christians we declare that we follow the one and only true Son of God called Jesus Christ.  We believe that He came from Heaven through a virgin birth, lived in Judea two thousand years ago, performed miracles, was crucified and resurrected from the dead so we can be part of the New Covenant and receive atonement. Everyday thousands of people utter the name of Jesus, some in prayer, others in worship, while others use the name to display frustration.

We open our Bibles and see the name Jesus, we go to church and (hopefully) hear the name Jesus being spoken from the front. We assume that everyone over the past two thousand years has called out to the name of Jesus Christ as well. Even back when He was walking the earth the crowds went out to hear the words of Jesus Christ and to witness His miracles, or did they?

The Secret No One Is Telling You

Today we just assume that because we call Him Jesus Christ that everyone else throughout history has as well. It is the belief that the way it is now is the way it has always been because we are always right and nothing really changes in the world. It’s like how people assume that places such as New York city, Istanbul, or France have always gone by those names. However, that’s not true; New York used to be called New Amsterdam, Istanbul was called Constantinople, and France was called Gaul. Be it because of changes to a language, invasions, or a differing of opinion names change over the decades and centuries.

Even if there aren’t the changes mentioned above, differences in language can change a simple name into a myriad of variations. Take Germany for example, that isn’t the nation’s actual name it’s the English version of it, in French it’s called Allemagne, while the Germans themselves refer to it as Deutschland. The same goes for nations in the Bible, what we call Egypt the ancient Jews called Mizraim, or that Tarshish is southern Spain and Yavan (Javan) is Greece.

Isn’t Jesus His one and only name and isn’t that what everyone called Him during His ministry, first name Jesus, last name Christ?

We see then that names may change over time but the things they identify remain the same, but what does this have to do with Jesus? Isn’t Jesus His one and only name and isn’t that what everyone called Him during His ministry, first name Jesus, last name Christ?  Have you ever questioned why Christ his last name, I don’t remember there being a Mary and Joseph Christ in the early pages of Luke, no there’s something missing here, something that’s been forgotten.

If Christ isn’t His last name then Jesus is still His first name right?  It may shock you to know that no one ever referred to Him as Jesus when He walked the earth.  In those days He was called by fellow Judeans “Yehoshua.” That name was the one given to Him when He was eight days old during His circumcision ceremony. It is the name Mary called Him by as a child, the name He was known by in the synagogue, and it was the name the apostles would have recognized Him by: Yehoshua from Nazareth the Messiah.

Lost In Translation

If Yehoshua is His name what does it mean? Yehoshua is interpreted from Hebrew/Aramaic as “Yahweh the Savior” or “Yahweh our deliverer.”  While the name Christ is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew word Mashiach (Messiah), which literally means the anointed one and his anointing. To be anointed means to be covered and/or soaked by either oil or the Spirit of God, David being anointed by Samuel for example (1 Sam 16:12-13).  Therefore, when we casually say the name Jesus Christ we are literally saying “Yahweh our savior and deliverer from Nazareth (literal definition varies between “branch” and “guard”) the one covered with the Spirit of God.”

To be anointed means to be covered and/or soaked by either oil or the Spirit of God

How then did we go all the way from His name being Yehoshua to Jesus? In Jesus’s time because of Roman (and earlier Ptolemaic Greek) rule it was customary to for Jews to have two names. They would have their Hebrew/Aramaic birth names and an alternate Greek name which was either a direct translation or something unique. Take Peter for example, with his multiple names, he was Simon (Shimon; to hear and one the twelve tribes) in Hebrew, Cephas (stone) in Aramaic and Petros (stone) in Greek. We see this with other disciples as well as Matthew who was called Mathaios (gift of God) in Greek and Levi (to be joined and one of the twelve tribes) in Hebrew and with Judas (not Iscariot) who was called Yehuda (praise and is one of the twelve tribes) in Hebrew and Thaddeus (courageous heart) in Greek and Aramaic.

The reason for these double names is that while the people of Judea would speak Aramaic or Hebrew at home and among themselves, while Greek was the primary political and business language in the Roman Empire. If you did any business in the Roman Empire outside of what we know today as Italy you did it in Greek.  Even in our day we see the same phenomenon with English (and to a growing extend with Mandarin), where people and businesses will learn English to access new markets and to grow in the global markets.

To the Jews Jesus was called Yehoshua and to the Greeks and Romans He was called Iesus.

Through all of these political and linguistic influences which Jesus’s home country was facing we see then that to the Jews Jesus was called Yehoshua and to the Greeks and Romans He was called Iesus.  At its core both translations of the name carry the same meaning just in different languages, but how did it become the Jesus we know today?

We already know that the Greek translation of Yehoshua was Iesus, when the name was translated into Latin (the language of the Romans) it remained the same. It wasn’t until centuries later after the fall of Rome when the Latin language fractured into Spanish, French and Italian that things started to change. When Iesus was translated into French the “I” was turned into a soft “J” and would be pronounce as Jeyzu., This was because of the German influences of the language, as in Germans all of the “Y” names in Hebrew were turned into “J” names, such as Yirmeyahu to Jeremiah (for reference is was Ieremias in Greek). Later as the English language developed as an amalgamation of Latin, French, German and other languages the soft “J” was turned into a stronger German type hard “G” type pronunciation leaving us with the Jesus we know and love today.

But this is where things begin to get very interesting, if we were to make a direct translation from Hebrew to English of the name Yehoshua would not be Jesus but Joshua.

It’s hard to accept I know, but even in older King James Versions of the New Testament we see in two instances where Joshua and Jesus are used interchangeably.  In these two verses the writer is clearly speaking of the Joshua who came after Moses.  Yet His name was translated as Jesus because of the Greek texts which read Iesus.

Acts 7:45 Which also our fathers that came after brought in with Jesus into the possession of the Gentiles, whom God drave out before the face of our fathers, unto the days of David; KJV

Hebrews 4:8 For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day. KJV

The writer is clearly speaking of the Joshua who came after Moses.  Yet His name was translated as Jesus because of the Greek texts which read Iesus.

We even see this exact same translation in the Septuagint, the Greek version of the OT which was the most popular translation used in the time of Jesus. There it also translates the name of Joshua/Yehoshua into Iesous.

I guess that does it, I broke the church as we know it and we don’t worship the Son of God called Jesus, but the Son of God called Joshua. I guess its time to rewrite all of those popular worship songs. I can’t wait to start singing songs such as “Joshua Lover of My Soul,” “Joshua Freak,” “Just Give Me Joshua,” and “Turn Your Eyes Upon Joshua.” It also looks like anything from U2’s Joshua Tree album is now fair game for Sunday mornings, who knew? We can also use this knowledge to launch a hip new rebranding campaign; “are you hurting, and looking for purpose in life then come to the church of Joshua the Soaked and find love, peace and eternal life.”

Promised Land Parallels

With this new understanding about Jesus’s name being Joshua things begin to get very interesting. Jesus lived out His earthly ministry according to the prophecies and scriptures written about Him (1 Corinthians 15:4).  God planned all the way back at the beginning what Jesus would do on the earth and how He would use prophets and other writers to declare what was to come, even if the true measure of what they received were veiled to them and their readers at first.  We see this same kind of divine planning which went into the life of Joshua, as many of the things he did were prophecies and guideposts towards the the second Joshua that would later come. These two lives are in many ways direct parallels of each other.  Just as the coming Messiah was hidden in the Law given to Moses, His destiny was revealed through the life of Joshua.

Just as the coming Messiah was hidden in the Law given to Moses, His destiny was revealed through the life of Joshua.

Joshua’s name in Hebrew was originally Hoshea which means “a savior deliverer”, (Num 13:8) but later his name was changed to Yehoshua, no longer a “savior/deliverer” but “Yahweh the (is my) savior/deliverer.” This name change happened after he spied out the land of Canaan and came back along with Caleb with a good report (Numbers 14:6) and tried to motivate the people to go and take the Promised Land.  That day he was renamed Yehoshua, no longer to be a savior/deliverer in his own strength but a declaration that Yahweh is the savior/deliverer of the people. That name “Yahweh is the savior & deliverer” is exact the name given to the Christ/Messiah and it is a continuation of the name Immanuel “God with us”.  Just like Joshua, Jesus came after Moses (a picture of the Law) to lead the people into a Promised Land, Joshua was appointed to lead the people into the physical land of Canaan while Jesus came to bring us into our Heavenly Promised land.

That name “Yahweh is the savior & deliverer” is exact the name given to the Christ/Messiah and it is a continuation of the name Immanuel “God with us”.

The parallels don’t stop there:

-Joshua sat in Moses’ tent and watched as God and Moses talked (Ex 33:11); Jesus sits at the right hand of God in the heavenly tabernacle and talks with God directly.

-Joshua refused to worship the golden calf at Mt. Sinai (Ex 32:17); Jesus refused to worship Satan in the wilderness.

-Joshua called on the people after spying across the Jordan to go and fight the giants of the land (Num 14:6, 30); Jesus conquered the Devil and calls His followers to go reclaim souls from the enemy.

– Joshua waited three days before crossing the Jordan (Josh 1:10-11) into the Promised land; Jesus remained in the grave 3 days before ascending to glory.

-Joshua crossed the Jordan on dry land (Josh 3:1-17) through a miracle of the Spirit; while Jesus was baptized into it and the Spirit appeared as a divine witness.

-Joshua who unlike Moses (the giver of the law) led the people into the promised land (Num 26:65, 27:18-23, Deut 31:14-15); Jesus who fulfilled the law leads us into the promised land of forgiveness, righteousness and total relationship with God.

-Joshua after crossing the Jordan circumcised every man (Josh 5:1-7); Jesus after crossing from death to life has circumcised our hearts and has written His law upon it.

-Joshua led the armies of Israel to capture the Promised Land (Deut 31:1-8, Josh 1:2-3); Jesus leads the armies of heaven and the church to expand the kingdom on earth.

-Joshua who uttered a cry and the walls of Jericho fell (Josh 6:16-20); Jesus who made His cry on the cross and the veil of the temple was torn in two.

-Joshua spared the life of the harlot Rahab (Josh 6:25); Jesus spared the life of the woman caught in adultery.

-Joshua who prayed that the sun should not set until he had completed the battle (Josh 10:12); Jesus upon the cross brought darkness over the land until he had declared “it is finished”.

-Joshua and the people faced betrayal and defeat because of the greed of one man Achan (Josh 7:19-26): Jesus was betrayed because of the greed of one man Judas Iscariot

-Joshua made a covenant with the heathen Gibeonites to spare them from the Judgment of God on the land (Josh 9); Jesus made a New Covenant for both Jew and Gentiles to spare them from the eternal judgment of God.

-Joshua made a public display of the fallen kings he had defeated (Josh 8:29, 10:24-26); Paul says that Jesus made a public spectacle of the spiritual forces He has defeated (Col 2:15).

-Joshua commissioned the 12 tribes to continue the fight and claim their territory (Josh 23:3-5); Jesus commissioned the 12 apostles to preach the gospel to every people, tribe and nation so the Kingdom would be spread.

Of all of these parallels the most important one is that Joshua came after Moses to bring the people out of the wilderness and into the promised land.

There’s Something About That Name

Jesus, Iesus, Yehoshua, Isa, Jezu, Yesu, Hesus, Iosa, Ihu or how it appears in any other language how we pronounce His name is not the issue as long as we know the power behind it.  The name in itself isn’t a magic word, the power comes from His actions, sacrifice, resurrection and in who He is.  Our faith in who truly He is will move mountains not whether we use an I or a J, or if we pray in Greek, Aramaic or English.  His blood, authority and dominion go beyond simple words. At His name, His true name “Yahweh our Savior the One covered with the Spirit of God.” every knee will eventually bow.

The name in itself isn’t a magic word, the power comes from His actions, sacrifice, resurrection and in who He is.

Where do we go from here? Understanding Jesus’s true name should awaken you even further to the purpose of His coming to earth, that we can see the parallels and previews of the life of Joshua and see its fulfillment through Jesus. We are to take this knowledge and use it to take that next step in understanding who Jesus is and how our lives revolve around that truth. That true name of “Yahweh our Savior the One covered with the Spirit of God” should be what we think about whenever we say His name, or read about Him, or pray, or even try to understand what it looks like for us to follow Him.

Jesus didn’t just come to make us good moral people, He came to save us from sin and its eventually outcome of death and separation from God. Like Joshua He leads us into enemy territory to retake the land in the name of God’s kingdom, but now rather then using swords we use faith, prayer, testimony, good works, love, compassion, power and the fullness of the Holy Spirit to do so.

Jesus didn’t just come to make us good moral people, He came to save us from sin and its eventually outcome of death and separation from God.

It also means that we today as Christians must look at the life of Joshua and the people he led and do all that we can so that we don’t end up like they did in the book of Judges. Those who claimed a relationship with God but looked and acted even worse than the Canaanites they allowed to remain in their land, or those who would worship God only when they felt that Baal had failed or ignored them.

The secret name of Jesus must be known to us so we see Him as He truly is, our savior, deliver and King. We must take this knowledge and spread it to all people in all places that “Yahweh our Savior the One covered with the Spirit of God” has come to set us free and to bring us into the Heavenly promised land. The Law, our good deeds, or even our hearts desires cannot carry us into the Promised Land only Jesus can.

Moses died outside of the Promised Land at the edge of the wilderness (Deut 34:1-5), because he failed the Law by disobeying God’s command at Meribah (Num 20:24). However, through Jesus we see Moses at the mount of Transfiguration (Mark 9:4) taking his first steps in the natural Promised Land, not because of what he did but because of Jesus, our Joshua, the one who leads us out of the wilderness of this world and into God’s Kingdom.

To go deeper in your journey with Christ check out my new book Understanding Who You Are: A Survey of 21st Century Christian beliefs which is now on sale. Available in paperback (Canada or USA) and eBook! Get your copy today and discover not just your purpose but learn how you can build the Kingdom of God here on the Earth.

 

Creative Commons LicenseThe Secret Name of Jesus ChristCameron Conway is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

 

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Understanding Who You Are (eBook) Pre-orders are live

Understanding Who You Are cover

UWYA 6x9 cover

My new book Understanding Who You Are: A Survey of 21st Century Christian Beliefs (eBook) is now available for pre-order!

Are you looking to understand what it means to be a Christian today? Or are you a new believer trying to grasp everything involved with the Bible and your faith? Whether you’re a new or experienced believer there is still so much to discover about who God is, who we are as believers and what is actually involved in our faith in Jesus.

So head on over to any of these retailers to reserve your copy today! Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Kobo, Indigo, iTunes, Barns & Nobel, and for a complete list click this link -> books2read.

from the back cover:

You will never understand who you are until you realize who God is and what it means to be a Christian today.

Discover in Understanding Who You Are what your life can look like when you realize the fullness of what it means to follow Jesus. Christianity is not just about information but action, it isn’t just about reading scriptures but bringing them to life right now.

The world is much different than it was two thousand years ago, but there remains eternal truths which can still reshape our lives, truths which are becoming all the more forgotten.

When you understand who you are and what the Bible is declaring, you can live as Jesus intended. You are called to have an impact on this world and see it changed for the better  by the power of  the cross.

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Praying Into Another Universe

As Christians one of the great revelations that we are faced with is that there is more to this universe than we can see with our natural eyes. Beyond the veil of our physical universe lurks another parallel world, one which is able to interact and influence the world we see around us. It is here in this invisible and supernatural realm that forces of God and the forces of the Devil contend for control of the realm of mankind. With all of this spiritual activity going on around us the natural question is then, how can Christians participate in this unseen world?

Before we can talk about how to participate in this struggle we must look at why we can be an influence in this trans-dimensional battle.

Jesus The Invader From Another Universe (Presented In Technicolor)

In the gospels, we see numerous examples of Jesus using His divine authority to cast out demons and bring about physical healings for the people. Jesus was operating in a power and influence which reached beyond the world around Him. Jesus (through the power of the Holy Spirit) was able to bring about the reality of the supernatural realm into the natural and override the problems He was witnessing among the people.

Jesus operated in a power and influence which reached beyond the world around Him.

Jesus often spoke about another world, being born of the spirit (John 3:5-8), a place called Heaven, and about beings from another realm called angels and demons. Jesus in John 8:23 spoke about how He came from above and wasn’t of this world as opposed to those confronting Him who were from “beneath” (or below in other translations). Jesus demonstrated a clear divide between the world He was physically walking around in and the world that He originated from.

One world was broken, rebellious, decaying and consumed with the failings of humans, while the other realm was one of power, peace, holiness and is overwhelmed by the glory of God. It is no wonder that wherever Jesus went the world and people around Him were changed for the better. Thieving tax collectors became disciples, the sick were made well, the lost had found a loving shepherd, and those seeking God came face to face with Him.

Universes Collide (In 3-D)

It is one thing for Jesus to move in this power and to have an awareness of a realm beyond what the people could see, that is easy to believe. What becomes difficult to accept or comprehend came about during the middle of Jesus’ ministry. In an unexpected step Jesus took the power and authority He had as the Son of God and extended that same authority to the twelve disciples in Matthew 10:1. From then on we hear of the disciples going out and moving in the same power demonstrated by Jesus as they preached about Him (Luke 9:6). Now because of what Jesus did (even before the cross) those who followed Him in this world were able to do the same things Jesus did.

Not only did Jesus transfer that authority to the twelve but He also extended it to seventy other followers as well in Luke 10:17-19. It is these extensions of authority that give Christians today the right to engage with spiritual forces in the same manner and to the same degree that is recorded in the Gospels and in the book of Acts. Not only were a select few permitted to replicate this authority but all who believe in Christ. We see this in John 14:12-14 and in the account of someone outside of Jesus’ followers casting out demons in His name (Luke 9:49-50). It is through our Christ given authority and our relationship with Him which gives us the right to engage in the same acts of power and demonstrations of the Kingdom that Jesus operated in.

It is through our Christ given authority and our relationship with Him which gives us the right to engage in the same acts of power and demonstrations of the Kingdom that Jesus operated in.

In A World Under Siege Only One Thing Can Save It: Prayer

Once we understand the authority we have in terms of the unseen realm we must now look at our primary weapon, prayer. Not only is prayer our primary weapon it is also the lynch-pin in our living relationship with God. Our prayers can be compared to artillery shells begin fired off in the field of battle, they are launched from a great distance and can cause a great deal of destruction. However, we cannot just blindly fire off these artillery rounds of prayer without coordinates or a proper target, that is where our fellowship with God comes into play in our battle against unseen forces.

We now see that prayer is a mighty weapon and it is the vehicle through which we exercise our authority. To continue the metaphor the artillery gun is our authority the projectile is our prayer, the gun powder is our relationship with God and the explosion is the working of the Holy Spirit. Now that prayer has been identified as a powerful weapon our target must come into sight. It is not flesh but the spiritual forces which influence the natural world. Paul sums this up in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 as he speaks of the unseen battlefront moving against the Kingdom.

We now see that prayer is a mighty weapon and it is the vehicle through which we exercise our authority

Understanding that our battle is against spiritual forces is only the first step in this conflict. We must develop our personal relationship with God, through that relationship we receive not just authority but the “coordinates” we need to effectively pray for God’s will to come into a situation. If at any point you think you’re unaware what God’s will is, you can always fall back on John 10:10 “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (NKJV) 

Let’s All Go Through The Lobby To The Deadliest Battlefield In The Universe

The final key in our ability to have an influence on the unseen realm is in our lifestyle and day to day actions. The fiercest battlefront we each face is the one for our own minds. It is the battle within ourselves which will determine if we either engage in the global spiritual battle or if we will retreat and go AWOL from our spiritual responsibilities to pray the Kingdom of God into this world.

This is why Paul spoke so candidly about our lifestyles in Romans 12:1-3 and taught about us not being conformed to this world and resisting how our flesh wants us to operate. There is a reason why Paul began his discourse on the Christian Armor with the call to first stand. If we cannot rise up or are under the oppression of the enemy we will never be able to properly fight in the great spiritual battle. Most people don’t realize it but our actions matter, our sins or lack thereof matter, our everyday conduct matters, our thought life matters! It’s these everyday decisions that will attempt to either usher in the Kingdom of God or the kingdom of the enemy. If we are broken, in sin and without faith we will not be able to pray with power, or at times even at all.

If we cannot rise up or are under the oppression of the enemy we will never be able to properly fight in the great spiritual battle.

Far too often we give unnecessary attention to Satan and his forces when what we are dealing with are heart and sin issues. Not every frustration, conflict, dark emotion or problem comes from demons or the like. It is concerning that we try to shift all of our responsibility to live according to Jesus’ teachings off of our shoulders and instead go off and chase the shadows of supposed demons because it is easier to blame them than it is to renew our minds and change ourselves.

I’m not discounting the harassing nature of demons or downplaying their desire to cripple and mute believers. Rather I am advocating that there are times when the only force that is working against us is really just ourselves, our desires, our stubbornness and our own wants.

This grand battle requires real work on our part, as we are to be both defensive and offensive against the enemy. James 4:7-8 makes this internal battle abundantly clear and highlights what is available for those who endure: “Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” Once our hearts are right then our minds can become ready for the battle and then and only then can we engage in a prolonged effort to expand the Kingdom of God through prayer and actions.

Coming Soon To A Kingdom Near You

The initial question of how can a Christian participate in the unseen world should be answered with another question in light of what has been shown to be available to the believer. The question we should be asking ourselves now is, “how much will I participate in influencing the unseen universe?” Throughout this battle we must realize that Christians are already members of the victorious army of Christ, we must have a personal revelation that the war is won but the skirmishes continue. Satan and his minions still have power and an agenda to cause death and chaos but they are already defeated. They are a retreating army trying to set as many fires as they can while they run from their previously held territory.

We are to be aware of the spiritual universe and its impact on our own but we are not to fear it or what dwells within it. Now the words of Paul once again ring true from Philippians 2:9-11 because the name and authority of Jesus calls on all those not just on the earth but those above and below it to bow down before Him.

By the authority Christ has given us, through the power of prayer, combined with the ability to live holy lives we must no longer think of if we can, but yes we can. Yes, we can have relationship with the Father, yes we can live holy lives here on earth, yes we can heal the sick, and yes we can see the forces of evil defeated and chased away. We must see ourselves  as children of two universes We were physically born into a natural universe of matter and decay, but we have also been adopted into a spiritual universe of power and unending life. It is our job now to pray for God’s will and His Kingdom to spread throughout our world so the physical realm looks more like the Heavenly universe each day.

 

 

Creative Commons LicensePraying Into Another Universe Cameron Conway is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.