Both Mary and Joseph were told to name their child Jesus. This name means “savior” or “deliverer.”
Friends must have asked them, “What did you name your son?” They would answer “We named him ‘Savior.’ ” When Jesus reached talking age, people would squat to his eye level and ask “What’s your name, young-fellow?” He’d reply “Savior.” This was not uncommon, however, as many babies were named Jesus, and no doubt some of them grew to become great men. The Old Testament name, Joshua, is in fact the same word.
What, then, made THIS Jesus different? Why would anyone take his name seriously?
“Name him Jesus,” the angel told Joseph in a dream, “because he will save his people from their sins.” Only the real Jesus can do that.
Today there are many would-be saviors. Some of them are remarkable men and women. I study their lives and read their books. They inspire me. They lead me. They give me tremendous examples of how to live.
But once in awhile I face a situation that I know is the result of my own crummy, vile, selfish tendencies, which I am powerless to overcome. In times like that, only one Jesus can help. The one who can save me from my sins.