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Jesus Came To...
Declare the Father’s Name
by Bryan Gibson
October 25, 2008
Speaking to His Father Jesus said, “I have manifested Your name” (John 17:6), and, “I have declared to them Your name” (John 17:26). How did Jesus manifest or declare the Father’s name? Consider these statements from the first chapter of John:
“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth” (v. 14).
“And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace” (v. 16).
“No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared (explained—NASV) Him” (v. 18).
There is no one “name” that fully reveals the character of God, even the one given in Exodus 3:14-15, which was said to be His name “forever” and a “memorial to all generations.” His fullness however is revealed in Jesus, who was God in the flesh. Jesus revealed the character of God through His teachings, through His mighty works, and through His perfect life. On one occasion, Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us” (John 14:8). Jesus replied, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’”? (John 14:9). The Old Testament reveals much about the character of God, but the picture was not complete until we “beheld His glory.”
Earlier mention was made of the passage in Exodus 3:14-15,
where God tells Moses to tell the children of
I AM the bread of life (John 6:35, 48).
I AM the light of the world (John 8:12, 9:5).
I AM the door of the sheep (John 10:7, 9).
I AM the good shepherd (John 10:11, 14).
I AM the resurrection and the life (John 11:25).
I AM the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6).
I AM the true vine (John 15:1).
Jesus came to this earth to seek and to save that which was lost (Luke 19:10), but He also came to declare His Father’s name—to fully reveal His nature. To see Jesus is to see God in all His fullness. What is our task today? To let Christ live in us (Galatians 2:20), so that we too can become partakers of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4), so that we too can declare or manifest His name through our daily lives.