Names for the Baby in the Manger – Sermon Application #2
One of the divine titles ascribed to Jesus is “Wonderful” (Isa. 9:6). The Hebrew word translated to wonderful means miraculous. Men speak of many man-made wonders which may inspire some sense of awe, but what are these compared with the wonders of creation? Moreover, what are the wonders of creation compared with the wonders of the Creator! There are many wonderful things to see and to hear, but none compare with the Wonder of all wonders, the Miracle of all miracles: Jesus Christ. Jesus has a glory which is not only inexhaustible, but which is multifaceted and unmatched in beauty.
Application to the doctrine of the Holy Spirit:
Jesus is Wonderful as the Counselor. This is because He has the Spirit without measure (Jhn. 3:34). Isaiah prophesied of Christ’s anointing saying, “the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD; And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD” (Isa. 11:2-3). The exciting thing is that we have the same Spirit indwelling us! Some Christians suppose that, since we have the Spirit permanently indwelling us, we cannot have more or less of the Spirit. It is for this reason that many desire to change the word “filled” in “be filled with the Spirit” (Eph. 5:18) to “controlled.” However, the Greek word means “filled.” The problem is a failure to recognize the nature of the infilling. Obviously, the filling is not implying that God’s essence can be divided into parts with some Christians having more of Him than others. A cross-reference with the parallel passage in Colossians shows that the infilling of the Spirit pertains to filling our minds and hearts with the word of Christ and submitting to it in obedience (Eph. 5:18; cf. Col. 3:16). When the Bible says that we “have been all made to drink into one Spirit” (1 Cor. 12:13), it is not to be understood as if we literally are drinking parts of the Spirit. The more that we fill up our hearts and minds with the word of God─ walking in and maintaining fellowship with Jesus─ the more of the Holy Spirit we will have; not in the ontological sense, but in terms of His truth, manifested power, and operations in our lives.
Application to the doctrine of God:
Jesus is also Wonderful as the Mighty God. He who created the universe with no resources but the power of His word; He who breathed His own life into dust and making it a living being; He who commands the raging sea and whose presence melts the mountains; He came into the world in a body of flesh. Throughout the course of His earthly ministry, Jesus demonstrated that He is Almighty God. He created matter out of nothing (Jhn. 6:11), defied the laws of physics (Matt. 14:25), rebuked the forces of nature (Matt. 8:26), listened to people’s private thoughts (Luke 11:17), and commanded the dead to live (Jhn. 11:43). In addition to all of this, He made a public display of all His enemies by raising Himself from the dead! Let’s take time to praise Almighty Jesus who ever lives to fight for those who trust in Him!
Application to the doctrine of reconciliation:
Jesus is Wonderful because He is the Prince of Peace! From the moment that Adam sinned, a war was initiated between men and God. The Bible tells us that, before we were saved, we were “alienated and enemies in [our] mind by wicked works” (Colossians 1:21). And because man wars against God through rebellion, God is constrained by His righteousness to war against man in wrath. The Bible says that “the wrath [i.e. anger] of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness” (Rom. 1:18). Although man was at war with God and God at war with men, God nevertheless abounded in grace by sending His Son to reconcile His enemies to Himself. Regarding the cross of Jesus, the Scripture says that “God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them” (2 Cor. 5:19). And Paul writes in his letter to Rome, “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom. 5:1).