One LORD Jesus Christ
Last week we looked at the exclusiveness of Christianity that Jesus is the only way. Over the coming weeks, we will continue on the same line of the creed, but we will be looking at the titles given to the second person of the Trinity, Jesus. The first one is the Lord. The word for Lord is Kyrios in Greek, which appears over 700 times. Lord is a title we do not use much in today’s vocabulary. It can have the scope of meaning, sometimes as a title of respect like calling someone mister or sir today, it can refer title of authority referring to a master, or it can sometimes refer to a god (1 Cor 8:5). Most likely, in the 1st century, Jews would have substituted YHWH (Yahweh) for Kyrios when speaking Greek. Previously Hebrews would have said Adonai (Lord in Hebrew) rather than speaking the Holy name of God (Yahweh). The use of Kyrios or Lord would have had civil meaning. However, Jews would have used this as a reference to God. Lord is used commonly referring to Christ, and particularly after the Gospels, the word speaks of Jesus as God not merely as a title of respect. Paul frequently used the term Kyrios speaking of Christ to reference the LORD in the Old Testament (Cf. Rom 10:13; Joel 2:32). These are great verses to learn for Jehovah’s Witnesses who deny Jesus is Yahweh.
One of the significant distinctions of Christians is their statement that Jesus is Lord. No one can make this statement unless they have the help of the Spirit (1 Cor 12:3). In his famous book, ‘Mere Christianity,’ C.S Lewis explains that Jesus has to be one of three things; Liar, Lunatic, or Lord; or mad, bad, or God. This is known as Lewis’s trilemma. You cannot accept Jesus as an excellent moral teacher because Jesus claims to be God. If he makes this claim, he either is a lunatic because there thought he was God but didn’t know better. Lewis says he may as well call himself a ‘poached-egg.’ Or the other option is that he knew he was not God and therefore he is a liar. He deliberately lied, making him a deceiver, then not a good moral teacher. Lewis says,
“You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon, or you can fall at his feet and call Him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher.”
Everybody has this choice before them, and it would be the most crucial choice they ever make because eternity hangs in the balance. Is Jesus Christ Lord? Is he your Lord? We will discuss this further in our study about how Jesus is the Son of God and Son of Man, however as we think and consider Jesus as Lord, we must realize this is not merely a statement to make but true doctrine effects our lives. If Jesus is Lord, that means we are under his Lordship. He is king in our lives. As we have been looking at the letter of Colossians, we see this vital doctrine in our beliefs, but also, we are seeing how this doctrine affects us in our day to day lives. Jesus is Lord means he is Lord over our whole life, not merely if we call ourselves Christians or not. Jesus is supreme over our marriage, work, parenting, choices, and everything we do. When we confess, Jesus is Lord, it is a bold statement in our faith and practice.