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Names of Jesus: Head of the Church
Last week we explored Jesus as the Bridegroom. He is our Bridegroom, and we, the Church, are His bride, the body of Christ. Jesus as the Bridegroom is also correlated with Jesus as the Head of the Church. Just as the husband is the head of the wife, so Jesus is the Head of His Church. As Head of the Church, He is head over everything for the Church. Let’s explore what the Bible tells us about the meaning of Jesus as the Head of the Church.
Why is Jesus the Head of the Church?
In Ephesians 1:20-23 Paul explains that God exercises His own power and authority through Jesus, and placed Christ at His right hand, giving Him authority over everything for the sake of the Church. Jesus is the Head of the Church because God bestowed Him with this superior position and authority, not only in this age, but also in the age that is to come after Christ returns again and into eternity.
13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”Revelation 22:13 ESV
Not only does God establish all earthly leadership and authority, but He establishes ALL leadership and authority including that given to Christ Jesus. God establishes all authority and in Romans we are instructed to submit to the governing authorities, which applies also to submitting ourselves to the authority of Jesus Christ as Head of the Church.
- Read more: Main Themes of the Book of Ephesians
- Read more: Names of Jesus: Bridegroom
- Read more: Women of the Word: Godly Woman
1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.Romans 13:1-5 ESV
2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.
3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval,
4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.
5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience.
18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.Matthew 28:18 ESV
Jesus has such authority that even nature itself heeds His command. When scripture says He has authority over all things, that everything is subject to Jesus for the sake of the Church, God truly means everything.
23 As he got into the boat, his disciples followed him.
24 Suddenly, a violent storm arose on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves—but Jesus kept sleeping.
25 So the disciples came and woke him up, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to die!”
26 He said to them, “Why are you afraid, you of little faith?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.
27 The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the sea obey him!”Matthew 8:23-27 CSB
How does the Head of the Church oversee His people?
Just as husbands are to be head of their wife, being placed by God in a position of loving leadership over her, Christ is head of the Church, His bride. He oversees His people in many ways that are also emphasized by the marriage relationship between a husband and wife.
22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.Ephesians 5:22-23 ESV
23 For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior.
Check out other names of Jesus as the Son of Man:
- Names of Jesus as the Son of God
- Names of Jesus: Son of Man
- Names of Jesus: Messiah
- Names of Jesus: Emmanuel
- Names of Jesus: The Beloved
- Names of Jesus: Chief Cornerstone
- Names of Jesus: Good Shepherd
- Names of Jesus: Great High Priest
- Names of Jesus: Advocate
- Names of Jesus: Bridegroom
- Names of Jesus: Head of the Church
- Names of Jesus: The Rock
- Names of Jesus: Root of David, Bright Morning Star
He loves and sanctifies the Church
Christ loves His Church so much that He came down to live a sinless human life among man, go through unimaginable pain and suffering, and finally die bearing the weight of all of our sins upon Him, to be raised again in glory, and ascend into Heaven to sit at the right hand of God and prepare a place for His Church and Bride to come dwell with Him. He loved us so much that He literally gave His own flesh to redeem and sanctify us, restoring to God those who would believe and submit themselves to Him as a wife to her husband.
24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,Ephesians 5:24-30 ESV
26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,
27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.[a]
28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church,
30 because we are members of his body.
Christ is our Savior, and through His sacrificial death on behalf of His Church, He offers those who will believe in Him the way to eternal life because of His love for us. When we choose to accept His sacrifice for our sakes, we are washed clean by His blood spilled on our behalf and receive His Holy Spirit to sanctify us for and to Himself.
- Read more: Warning Signs: Don’t Reject the Heavenly Voice
- Read more: What does it mean to be justified by grace?
- Read more: Warning Signs: Don’t Sin Willingly
He will return for the Church
As Head of the Church, He is our Bridegroom, and He, too, left His Father in Heaven to dwell among us and obtain for Himself His bride. He then departed to make a place for us to dwell with Him in Heaven at the appointed time. One day, such is the Jewish marriage custom, He will return for His bride and we will become on with Him.
31 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”Ephesians 5:31 ESV
Christ is to be placed as the absolute top priority in our lives, just as our marriage is our second priority, second only to our relationship with Christ. Christ left the Father in Heaven to dwell with us and prepare for Himself His Bride and Church, ascended into Heaven to prepare a place for us, and will return for us so that we can dwell and become one with Him.
28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.Hebrews 9:28 ESV
44 Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.Matthew 24:44 ESV
As Head of the Church, Christ will return for His Church and take us away to dwell with Him where there is no sin, no pain, no heartache. He will take us away to spend eternity with Him in the presence of God where there is absolutely no sin, but only good things because all good is from God.
13 I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before[a] Pontius Pilate made the good confession,1 Timothy 6:13-16 ESV
14 to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ,
15 which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords,
16 who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen.
|NKJV Thompson Chain-Reference Bible, hardcover
By Zondervan Bibles
|NIV Verse Mapping Bible–cloth over board, gray
He provides for the Church
1 Timothy 5 contains instructions for the Church, and is established by Christ’s own example. Verse 8 tells us that anyone who doesn’t provide for his relatives and his household denies the faith. Jesus sets this example in that He, as the Head of the Church, provides for His Church, those in His family. He gives us salvation through His own sacrifice, His Holy Spirit, His Word, His instructions, love, hope, grace, and mercy. He provides all that His family needs.
8 But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.1 Timothy 5:8 ESV
As we wait for Him to return for us, He does not leave us alone without help. He gives the Holy Spirit to those who trust Him as their Savior, the door is opened for us to have a personal relationship with God the Father through our faith in Jesus the Son, and we get to pray directly to God and read His Word. He provides us with His Armor to fight through this life, persevering in His will and ways, learning how to prepare for His return.
19 And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.Philippians 4:19 ESV
5 Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”Hebrews 13:5 ESV
16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,2 Timothy 3:16-17 ESV
17 that the man of God[a] may be complete, equipped for every good work.
- Read more: How do you pray without ceasing?
- Read more: What is the Bible?
- Read more: Fearless & Faithful: Praying for Strength
31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’Matthew 6:31-32 ESV
32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.
13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.Ephesians 6:13 ESV
Not only does Christ provide for all of our needs, but He gave Himself as the ultimate example in all things. Throughout His Word we learn about how to live as Christ, following His teachings, and being led by His way and will.
7 The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers.1 Peter 4:7-11 ESV
8 Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.
9 Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.
10 As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:
11 whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
He supplies all of our needs, and guides us by His divine power for His glory and honor. We were made by Him, through Him, and for Him. He does not neglect to call us to Himself and teach us all that He knows we each need to learn, provide for us what we each need, at the time and in the ways He knows is right and best. The Head of the Church never abandons His Church or their needs.
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Have you accepted the grace of God?
If you have not accepted the grace of God and chosen to believe in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, I encourage you to pray to God now and invite Him in, accept Jesus as the sacrifice for your sins, and repent of your sins. Submit it all to God, lay it at His feet, seek the forgiveness of God, welcome Him into your life, and believe that Jesus died and rose again to save you from your sins.
If you would like to learn more about salvation, you can find a couple of studies that may help here:
- Don’t Neglect Your Salvation
- Prayer of Salvation
- What is grace and why do we need it?
- What does it mean to be justified by grace?
- Don’t Reject God’s Grace
- Don’t Reject Christ
- Godly Women – what it means to live a godly life
- Redeemed Women – what it means to be redeemed
- What is Biblical Love?
- What are Spiritual Gifts?
- How to live in Spirit and Truth
- How to test what is pleasing to God