The sentence finishes this way – every knee shall bow and tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord – Philippians 2:10. The entire verse in Philippians 2 is actually very interesting as it is most likely a hymn Paul quotes, making it one of the earliest hymns about Jesus we know. Your Bible may print it as poetry to acknowledge Paul is quoting a song.
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father. – Philippians 2:9-10
This verse came to mind because of a discussion with a millennial friend of mine. He was a little perturbed to be honest, because knowing the name of Jesus for him is not enough. Jesus advocated a way of life, and to simply know the name of Jesus without living the life is to live like the demons of the Bible. In the Bible, the demons know who Jesus is. They do not live like Him. Disciples are those who follow Jesus. They know the name and walk the walk.
Which one are you?
In America today, the case may be we know the name of Jesus and not much more. Like many Americans, recently I have become a participant in American politics. As a Republican voter I have been watching the billions of Republican candidates find their voice as they establish their political stances and base. An issue that scares me is immigration. There is fascination about building a wall, guarding a wall, and paying for a wall between our country and Mexico amongst Republicans. History tells us the effectiveness of walls, from China to East Berlin, but the Christian voice also calls. Leviticus 19:34 tells us,
The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born.
Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.
And this is sixteen verses away from the command Jesus gave to love our neighbor as we love ourselves – Leviticus 19:18
Is it time for American Christians to stop practicing a name only faith? Knowing the name of Jesus, while powerful, in no way completes the life Jesus calls all his followers to live. We are called not only to know a name but to embody a different standard that will result in us changing our lives and taking a stand. The name of Jesus is what forms our thoughts, shapes our steps, and insists we speak out.
In the end, readers of the Bible must realize that what the demons knew was only Jesus as a name. Jesus is so much more, and following Jesus and acting like Him are the only hopes we have of living a life that is not in any way fenced-in.
(thank you for reading, if you found Jesus in this please comment and share)