Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
(Philippians 2:9-11 ESV)
Not only has God exalted Jesus above all else, but God has given Jesus a name that exceeds every other name.
Since Jesus’ name is above every other name He must therefore be greater than any other being. That is, He must be God.
This is one of many places where the Bible tells us that Jesus is God. Critics of the Bible will often claim that the Bible does not say that Jesus is God. But this is not true. Its easy to miss many truths in the Bible when we read it quickly or with a conclusion already established in our mind. But when we read, think, (i.e. meditate on it), and pray [James 1:5] the truth is more easily seen [Psalm 119:97-99].
When we hear the name of a person we think not only of what they look like, but also what kind of person they are. When people hear the name Hitler they think of some specific character traits. When people hear the name Mother Theresa, they think of some very different character traits. A person’s name is not just how we identify them in a crowd. A person’s name encompasses all they are.
Jesus’ character is far and away above that of any other. In fact, it is becoming like Jesus that is God’s goal for us [Romans 8:29]. God wants us to become more loving, more peaceful, more patient, more kind, more selfless. These are just some character traits of Jesus that God is developing in His children.
When a person is born-again and is adopted into God’s eternal family He will begin to work in that person’s life to make him/her more like Jesus [Philippians 1:6]. He does that through our life experiences – notably the pain and suffering we go through on this earth.
No one develops their character through success and pain-free living. Our character is developed when we go through situations we don’t want to go through: the failures and suffering. This is not a message that the world embraces. Our world is hedonistic. The pursuit of pleasure and the elimination of pain is everyone’s goal. The consequence of that is a world where people are in a state of arrested development: immature and with major character flaws.
The child of God embraces pain and suffering with joy because he knows that it is the way to become better [Romans 8:28]
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