This morning, reading in Luke, I came across a three word combination that jumped off the page. Each word in and of itself has appeared numerous times in Luke. That the words would be associated with each other is not unexpected . . . in fact, it’s the theme of Luke’s record. But until my reading in Luke 24, these three words have not been lined up side by side by side. And the first occurrence of this three-word phrase caused me to pause . . . and wonder . . . and consider anew the implications of such a phrase . . . of such a title.
But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. (Luke 24:1-3 ESV)
The Lord Jesus. Those are the three words lined up together for the first time in Luke’s gospel. Does it surprise you? As I paused over the fact that Luke explicitly records that the body was not in the tomb, something (actually, I’m thinking Someone . . . thank you, Holy Spirit) caused me to observe that Luke says it was “the body of the Lord Jesus.” And as I looked at that phrase, “the Lord Jesus” Someone caused me to ask myself if that was the first occurrence of the phrase in Luke as I hadn’t recalled reading it before. Did a little e-concordance work, and sure enough . . . Bam! . . . first occurrence of “the Lord Jesus” is right there in Luke 24. And, even more surprising, this is only one of two times the term “the Lord Jesus” is found in all four gospels (you can check where the other occurrence is).
Again, it’s not like the idea that Jesus is the Lord is deeply hidden in the gospels . . . in fact, it’s kind of the main point. But there was something about seeing the term . . . oops! . . . there was Someone who impressed upon my heart the sacredness of the title . . . and what it should mean for me.
His name is Jesus. That was the name given to Him at birth. All men have names, and His was to be “Jehovah is salvation.” He bore a name on his birth certificate, as it were, that would foretell God’s purpose for sending His Son, “for He will save His people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21).
He would also be identified as Jesus Christ. As Jesus “the Anointed.” As Jesus the Messiah. The promised Son of God come to redeem and rescue. The hope of Israel, the light to the Gentiles. He who came in perfect submission to the Father’s will . . . obedient to God’s determination to purchase people out of sin and death through the suffering and death of His chosen Servant, through the shed blood of the Messiah (Isaiah 53).
But the Spirit leads Luke to write that, when they went to the tomb that Sunday morning, the body of the Lord Jesus was not there. The Lord Jesus was not there for He had risen just as He said. Jesus, the carpenter’s Son, demonstrated by way of an empty tomb that He is the Lord . . . the risen Lord . . . the Lord of heaven . . . the Lord of hosts . . . the Lord of all who have received His free gift of salvation and have owned Him as Savior.
While He calls us His friends (John 15:15), He is more than just a friend to us, He is Lord. He is my Master . . . He is the one who deserves total reign over my entire being. I am no longer my own, but I have been bought with a price and, as such, am to serve and glorify the Lord Jesus with my entire being.
Jesus . . . highly exalted of God . . . given the Name above all Names . . . that at the name of Jesus MY knee should bow . . . and MY tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
I so confess! . . . by His grace . . . and for His glory!