Tag Archives: Names and titles of Jesus in the New Testament

First in Everything

Christ is also the head of the church, which is His body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So He is first in everything.

~ Colossians 1:18 — NLT ~

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In order to give Jesus His rightful place in our lives, we must understand His position. For how can you truly give Christ His rightful place in your life if you don’t understand that He is first in everything? Let’s spend awhile together examining how Christ is first in everything…

  • Christ, the Word, existed before anything was created and He is God. Therefore, He is first before all of creation…
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1 In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He existed in the beginning with God. 3 God created everything through Him, and nothing was created except through Him.

~ John 1:1-3 — NLT ~

Write this letter to the angel of the church in Laodicea. This is the message from the One who is the Amen—the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s new creation:

~ Revelation 3:14 — NLT ~

  • Jesus was God’s only begotten Son, therefore, He is the first of all of God’s children.
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For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.

~ John 3:16 — NLT ~

For God knew His people in advance, and He chose them to become like His Son, so that His Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

~ Romans 8:29 — NLT ~

  • Jesus is both Lord and Savior of all creation…
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He came into the very world He created, but the world didn’t recognize Him.

~ John 1:10 — NLT ~

2 And now in these final days, He has spoken to us through His Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son He created the universe. 3 The Son radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God, and He sustains everything by the mighty power of His command. When He had cleansed us from our sins, He sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God in heaven. 4 This shows that the Son is far greater than the angels, just as the name God gave Him is greater than their names.

~ Hebrews 1:2-4 — NLT ~

Christ is first in everything. Just think about the power of that statement. First in everything… in all things… He is first in all… He is first…

Scriptures say that Christ is the firstborn from the dead…

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… and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth…

~ Revelation 1:5 — NLT ~

For a long, long time, I didn’t understand how the scriptures could say that Jesus was the firstborn from the dead, when there had been others raised from the dead. In fact, some had been raised from the dead in the Old Testament, while Jesus Himself, raised others from the dead in the New Testament. Therefore, how could Jesus be the firstborn from the dead?

But praise God, for His Holy Spirit, who teaches us and gives us understanding. You see, Jesus is indeed the firstborn from the dead, because all of the others who were raised from the dead, died again, and are still dead. However, Jesus died, was buried for three days, descended into hell and preached the gospel, and then was raised from the dead on the third day. His body did not decay, as all other bodies do. Not only was He raised from the dead, but He was given an incorruptible body, and after being seen by more than five hundred witnesses, He ascended into heaven, where He is now seated at the right hand of God the Father, until the day when He returns for His bride, the church.

I pray as you read this that you will come to an understanding of how Christ is first in everything. I’ve shown you that He is God, and that He created the heavens and the earth… I’ve shown you that He is God’s firstborn Son… I’ve shown you that He is Lord and Savior of all creation, and that He is the firstborn from the dead… So, because Christ is first in everything, He also deserves to be first in your life and in mine.

Therefore, my beloved readers, I ask each and every person who reads this post, including me, Is Jesus first in everything in your life?

© 2013 Cheryl A. Showers

Through Him and For Him

15 Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation, 16 for through Him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on  earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see — such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through Him and for Him.

~ Colossians 1:15-16 — NLT ~

Do you ever wonder why? Why was I created? Why am I here? Why does the sun rise in the east and set in the west? Why are the stars in the sky? Why does it seem like our lives are intricately woven together, even though we don’t even know one another?

The answer to all of those questions is found in the last sentence of Colossians 1:16

… Everything was created through Him and for Him.

Do you want to know why you were created? You were created by God, through Jesus Christ, for Jesus Christ…

“Bring all who claim Me as their God, for I have made them for My glory. It was I who created them.”

~ Isaiah 43:7 — NLT ~

We were created for God’s glory. Have you ever felt like a total failure? Have you ever looked into the mirror and hated the person looking back at you? Have you ever felt as though God made a mistake by creating you? I’ve felt all of those emotions, but as I read God’s word, wisdom speaks to me…

Though others, including myself, may look on me with disdain, I was created for God’s glory. Even though I’m overweight and my skin is blemished, I was created for God’s glory. Even though I’m loud and annoying to some, God created me this way, for His glory. Even though others may look at me and see someone who is worthless, God sees me as someone of great worth, for He created me for His glory… And do you want to know something else? God created YOU for His glory too!

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created… ~

(Revelation 4:11 KJV)

This is huge. Do you doubt your worth? Do you despise yourself? Do you curse the day you were born? My beloved reader, look closely at this scripture and rejoice! For you were created for the Lord’s pleasure. You were created to bring pleasure to Almighty God. He values you, just as I value and love my children who were created by God, through Christ, and also through my husband and me. My husband and I united together and produced two children, who we prayed would bring us great joy (pleasure), and they have brought us great pleasure throughout the years…

I remember the joy of hearing my children say, “Mama and Dada.”

I remember how my son would throw his arms around my neck and give me a big kiss, as he proclaimed his love for me, each day before boarding the bus for kindergarten…

I remember finding little flowers and other treasures on my pillow, along with little love letters from my daughter when she was little…

I remember the joy I felt as I led both of my children to Christ…

You see? We were created for God’s pleasure, just as our children are created for our pleasure. And understand this, my friend, there have been many times throughout the years, when my children, who were created for my pleasure, have hurt me deeply. Has anyone else experienced this? There have been times, when both of my children  rebelled against me and against God, and yet, I can honestly tell you that no matter how deeply they wounded me, my love for them never diminished, just as God’s love for us has never diminished, no matter how far we have gone astray, because His love never fails.

Even though I was created for His glory and for His pleasure, I have rebelled against the Lord many times, and instead of bringing Him pleasure, I’ve wounded Him.

You see, it was my sins that nailed Him to the cross…

It was my sins that tore into His flesh with each lash of the whip…

I was the one who rejected Him…

I was the one who cursed Him…

It was my weaknesses He carried…

It was my sorrows that weighed Him down…

He was pierced for my rebellion…

He was beaten so I could be whole…

He was crushed so I could be healed…

Do you see all of the pain and sorrow I’ve caused? And yet, it pleased the Lord to lay on Christ the sins of us all! Do you understand this? Because you and I were created for God’s glory and for His pleasure… because of His unfailing love for us, He was pleased to offer His only begotten Son as a sacrifice to pay for your sins and for mine, so that we could be reconciled to Him.

For everything comes from Him and exists by His power and is intended for His glory. All glory to Him forever! Amen.

~ Romans 11:36 — NLT ~

How amazing! Just think how much freedom, how much joy and how much power believers could walk  in if we could grasp the understanding of this. I know we can understand this in our heads, but, what if we truly understood the power of this in our hearts? What if we understood that we were created for God’s glory, even though…

We were born with physical or mental disabilities?

We have failed at everything we’ve ever done before?

We’ve been rejected by those that we love?

We are despised and hated?

We feel unworthy?

We’re ashamed of our past?

Do you understand that you were created for God’s glory? Beloved reader, do you not know that God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, so that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life? Do you believe? His word says that if you will confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord (He to whom a person or thing belongs, about which He has the power of deciding, Master, Lord, One who has control of the person), and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. Is He your Lord and Savior? If so, my beloved, then join with me and rejoice!

3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. 4 Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes. 5 God decided in advance to adopt us into His own family by bringing us to Himself through Jesus Christ. This is what He wanted to do, and it gave Him great pleasure. 6 So we praise God for the glorious grace He has poured out on us who belong to His dear Son. 7 He is so rich in kindness and grace that He purchased our freedom with the blood of His Son and forgave our sins. 8 He has showered His kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding.

God has now revealed to us His mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill His own good pleasure. 10 And this is the plan: At the right time He will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 11 Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for He chose us in advance, and He makes everything work out according to His plan.

12 God’s purpose was that we Jews who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. 13 And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, He identified you as His own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom He promised long ago. 14 The Spirit is God’s guarantee that He will give us the inheritance He promised and that He has purchased us to be His own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify Him.

~ Ephesians  1:3-14 — NLT ~

Hallelujah! Do you see, beloved reader? God purchased us to be His own people so that we would praise and glorify Him. We were all created for His glory. Therefore, if we truly believe that this God whom we serve is the same yesterday, today and forever, we will cling to His promises, and live as He has called us to live, walking in His Spirit, and sharing the word of God, so that miracles, signs and wonders will take place among us. And, since we were created for His glory, how can we fail?

Supreme Over All

Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation.

~ Colossians 1:15 — NLT ~

Jesus Christ is supreme over all creation… So what does this mean and why is this important? According to dictionary.com, the definition of supreme is:

  1. highest in rank or authority; paramount; sovereign; chief.
  2. of the highest quality, degree, character, importance, etc.: supreme courage.
  3. greatest, utmost, or extreme: supreme disgust.
  4. last or final; ultimate.

Jesus is supreme over all creation…

     He is the KING of all kings…

               He is the LORD of all lords…

                         He is the CHIEF cornerstone…

                    Christ radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God…

                         He sustains everything by the mighty power of His command…

                    He sits at the right hand of the majestic God in heaven…

          He is far  greater than the angels…

     His very name is above all other names…

Son of the living God
Unmatched in majesty and beauty
Peerless in glory and power
R
esplendant in holiness
E
ternal from everlasting to everlasting
M
erciful and full of grace
E
xcellent and highly exalted

The Visible Image of the Invisible God

Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation…

~ Colossians 1:15 — NLT ~

fc935-cross-and-crown-of-thorns

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Me. 7 If you had really known Me, you would know who My Father is. From now on, you do know Him and have seen Him!”

8 Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.”

9 Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father! So why are you asking Me to show Him to you? 10  Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me? The words I speak are not My own, but My Father who lives in Me does His work through Me. 11 Just believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me. Or at least believe because of the work you have seen Me do.”

~ John 14:6-11 — NLT

Unknowingly, for the last three years, while the disciples lived with Jesus, and walked with Him, they were seeing God. Even though Peter boldly declared, “…You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God,” (Matthew 16:16b) they still didn’t comprehend that they were looking into the face of the Living God.
Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation…

Colossians 1:15 — NLT ~

What does it mean that Christ is the visible image of the invisible God? We see in John 14:6-11 that Jesus explained that He and the Father are one, and that He is in the Father, and the Father is in Him… Jesus looks like His Daddy. Strong’s Greek Lexicon defines the word image in the scripture above this way…

Image — Eikon
an image, figure, likeness
an image of the things (the heavenly things)
used of the moral likeness of renewed men to God
the image of the Son of God, into which true Christians are transformed, is likeness not only to the heavenly body, but also to the most holy and blessed state of mind, which Christ possesses
the image of one
one in whom the likeness of any one is seen
applied to man on account of his power of command
to Christ on account of His divine nature and absolute moral excellence

My beautiful daughter...
My beautiful daughter…

My daughter is the image of me. She looks a lot like me. She has many of my mannerisms, often to the point that we will be talking and find ourselves standing or sitting in the same position. She also thinks a lot like me, and praise God, she has a strong, unwavering faith much like mine. It amazes me how much she resembles me, not only in looks.

Perhaps because my daughter is the image of me, I am able to understand what Jesus meant when He said, “… Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father!…” (John 14:9b) My daughter could say the same thing to someone who doesn’t know me, and they would have a good idea of what I look like, because not only does her physical appearance parallel mine, but her personality, her gifts and her faith, though they are uniquely hers, are still much like mine. It’s so funny, because not only does my daughter greatly mirror me, her oldest daughter (my granddaughter) is the spitting image of her mama, in appearance and in her ways. The main difference in the three of us is only the color of our hair.

Me
Me

Not only do my daughter and I resemble one another, we also resemble Jesus. You see, the more time we spend in His presence, the more we look like Him, as we begin to be transformed into His likeness, by His word.

Whenever I minister somewhere, I don’t much care whether people can remember my name or not. It doesn’t bother me (not anymore) if someone forgets to put my name on a bulletin or to give me credit for something I’ve done in the Lord’s name, because ministering to others is not about me. What is important to me is that people remember that I ministered to them about Jesus, because my heart’s desire is that I would be able to change many lives in Jesus’ name, and that many would be snatched from the fires of hell, as God transforms their lives. I want God to get all the glory, honor and praise that He is due.

16 Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

~ 2 Corinthians 3:16-18 — NKJV~

If we are truly living for the Lord, we must walk with Him, and as we spend more and more time with Him, meditating on His word, we will be changed…

1 And so, dear brothers and sisters I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him.Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

~ Romans 12:1-2 — NLT ~

As a Christian, (a follower of Christ), we need to have the same attitude that Christ has. When  people see me, I want them to see Christ within me. In order for that to happen, I must be willing to live as He lived…

6 Though He was God, He did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.

7 Instead, He gave up His divine privileges; He took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When He appeared in human form, 

He humbled Himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.
9 Therefore, God elevated Him to the place of highest honor and gave Him the name above all other names,

10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.

~ Philippians 2:6-11 — NLT ~.

Hallelujah! Christ is the visible image of the invisible God… One of my personal prayers has been that God will one day allow me to see Him face to face. And then, just now, He brought the following scripture passage to my mind…

31 “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit upon His glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered in His presence, and He will separate the people as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will place the sheep at His right hand and the goats at His left.

34 “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by My Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you fed Me. I was thirsty, and you gave Me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited Me into your home. 36 I was naked, and you gave Me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for Me. I was in prison, and you visited Me.’

37 “Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see You hungry and feed You? Or thirsty and give You something to drink? 38 Or a stranger and show You hospitality? Or naked and give You clothing? 39 When did we ever see You sick or in prison and visit You?’

40 “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these My brothers and sisters, you were doing it to Me!’

41 “Then the King will turn to those on the left and say, ‘Away with you, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his demons. 42 For I was hungry, and you didn’t feed Me. I was thirsty, and you didn’t give Me a drink. 43 I was a stranger, and you didn’t invite Me into your home. I was naked, and you didn’t give Me clothing. I was sick and in prison, and you didn’t visit Me.’

44 “Then they will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and not help You?’

45 “And He will answer, ‘I tell you the truth, when you refused to help the least of these My brothers and sisters, you were refusing to help Me.’

46 “And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life.”

Do you see what I see? The answer to my prayer is right there in Jesus’ words, as He spoke to His disciples. Whenever I look on the poor and the needy and help them, I am looking into the face of God, and blessing Him. However, every time I look at those who need help with contempt and disdain, I am looking into the face of God with contempt.

Do you want to see the face of God? Look for Christ. Do you want to see Christ? Look into the eyes of the poor and broken-hearted. Look into the eyes of those who are hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or are naked, sick or in prison, for it is there that you might see Christ, who is the visible image of the invisible God.

Father, I bless you for every time You’ve shown Your face to me, even though I failed to recognize You. I bless You for loving me, enough to give me the opportunity to see You and to serve You. Lord, I also ask for your forgiveness for those times I failed to serve You, even though I looked into Your eyes and saw Your need. 

I bless Your holy name, Lord, and I ask You to bless my readers, and draw them close to You, and let them see You in Jesus, and in one another! Amen.

© 2013
Cheryl A. Showers