Why is it vital to study who Christ is in the Scriptures? To study and know Christ is the Christian’s purpose. Knowing Christ is required in order to be conformed into His image. Paul defined his life purpose in Philippians 3:10 when he said,
Philippians 3:9-10 (KJV)
9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
What is in a name? Parents carefully consider names for their newborn children. A name is more than just a label or an identification. Names gives us knowledge about a person. Especially in Scripture, we find over and over again that a Biblical name often gives insight into the kind of person, or the character of a person. So it is with Christ. In the Bible we find many names of Christ revealing to us His character and person.
Goethe speaks of a name being inseparable from a person when he says, “A mans name is not like a mantle which merely hangs about him…but a perfectly fitting garment, which, like the skin, has grown over him, at which one cannot rake and scrape without injuring the man himself.”
To begin this study, we will look at Christ, the Sceptre.
Numbers 24:17 (KJV)
17 I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.
This verse in Numbers was the prophecy of Balaam that spoke of God future blessings of Israel in the person of Christ. While a Star in that day symbolized a great leader, the Sceptre symbolized authority. A king’s authority in Bible times were symbolized by two objects, a crown and a Sceptre. The sceptre of a king was a greatly decorated rod or staff held on certain occasions to demonstrate the king’s sovereignty. While a sceptre symbolized authority and sovereignty, a broken sceptre as seen below was a sign of lost authority or power.
Isaiah 14:5-6 (KJV)
5 The LORD hath broken the staff of the wicked, and the sceptre of the rulers.
6 He who smote the people in wrath with a continual stroke, he that ruled the nations in anger, is persecuted, and none hindereth.
In the story of Esther, who desired to save her people from the plot to destroy them, there was a law that any man or woman who approached the king in the inner court without being invited would be killed. The one exception was for the king to extend the gold scepter to him and spare his life. After Esther had prayed and fasted three days, she risked her own life and approached the king. We read in Esther 5:2, that Esther obtained favour in the kings sight, and he held out the golden sceptre, and Esther’s people were saved.
Esther 4:11 (KJV)
11 All the king’s servants, and the people of the king’s provinces, do know, that whosoever, whether man or woman, shall come unto the king into the inner court, who is not called, there is one law of his to put him to death, except such to whom the king shall hold out the golden sceptre, that he may live: but I have not been called to come in unto the king these thirty days.
Esther 5:2 (KJV)
2 And it was so, when the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, that she obtained favour in his sight: and the king held out to Esther the golden sceptre that was in his hand. So Esther drew near, and touched the top of the sceptre.
The Sceptre of authority is not only in Christ’s hands to possess, but He is the Sceptre. He is divine authority and power.
Matthew 28:18-20 (KJV)
18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
I quote, Henry Gariepy in his book, Portraits of Christ, on p. 112 as he ties this name of Christ to us in a wonderful way when he says, “Mankind in his sinful condition could not approach a holy and righteous God. Christ the Scepter, has reached out to us and by His touch on our lives, transforms us and enables us to come into the very presence of God the Father. By his grace, instead of incurring the wrath of God, we may know His love and blessing.”
Hallelujah for Christ the Sceptre! Christ as the Sceptre deserves to rule your thoughts, your actions, your attitudes, your ambitions, and ultimately to rule your heart. One last thing about Christ, the Sceptre, His power and authority can never be lost.
Psalm 45:6 (KJV)
6 Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.