Thank you for your good question, my friend. First of all, let’s talk about the definitions of two words for “Lord” as used in the Bible. In the Old Testament, you’ll often see the word LORD, all in capital letters, and this is in direct reference to the name of God—His name by which His people, Israel, were to know Him. The Hebrew word for LORD translates to the name for God by which He identified Himself to His people, and it is translated Yahweh, or “Jehovah”. This name for God means (in English) “the self-Existent One or the Eternal One. The information I have provided above was taken from the Strong Bible concordance.

Now, in the Bible, and mainly in the New Testament, but sometimes in the Old as well, there is another word, and this one generally refers to the Lord Jesus or to the Christ. This word is more a title than a name, and when referencing the Lord Jesus, only the first letter is capitalized instead of all the letters. The primary meaning is “Master”, and this would indicate someone in authority. The word itself in the OT is Adonai, and in the Scofield Reference Bible, there is  a note for Adonai: “the primary meaning is Master, and it is applied in the Old Testament Scriptures both to Deity and man. The latter instances are distinguished in the English version by the omission of the capital letter.” Since the primary meaning is Master, it would indicate someone in authority.

Now, I believe there is an Old Testament example in Psalm 110:1 which will demonstrate what I mean. This particular verse uses both words for Lord, refering to different members of the Godhead: “The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.” The translation by J.N. Darby renders the verse this way: “Jehovah said unto my Lord, Sit at my right hand, until I put thine enemies as footstool of thy feet.” The Lord Jesus Himself explains this verse in Mark 12:35-37 when He said, “And Jesus answered and said, while He taught in the temple, How say the scribes that Christ is the son of David? For David himself said by the Holy Ghost, The LORD said to my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool. David therefore himself calleth him Lord; and whence is he then his son?” 

These verses point out to us a couple things.  First of all, the Lord Jesus is the Christ, and the very One spoken of in Psalm 110—it is God, or Jehovah clearly speaking to David’s Lord, or the Christ. The Lord Jesus pointed out that for King David to call the Christ his Lord, that Christ who had not yet come into the world must pre-date and be greater than David. Therefore, He is the Christ of God, and as Christ, He is divine. Now, how can I say He is divine? Please recall that in Isaiah 7:14, we read of the Christ, “…Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel”. Then, in Matthew 1:20-23 we read God’s message to Joseph before the birth of Jesus, “But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.”

So, in the Old and New testament verses above, we see that the Christ child would be named “Immanuel”, meaning “God with us; and in the verse I quoted from Psalm 110:1, we find God Himself speaking to David’s Lord, the Christ as the One that would sit next to Him on high, while God made the enemies of the Christ His footstool—and in Joseph’s dream, clearly the Christ is the Lord Jesus Himself, the One who was David’s Lord, and the One who would one day rule the earth on David’s throne. That name Immanuel means God with us, and indeed, Jesus is God incarnate on the earth.  Peter realized this first in a boat on the Sea of Galilee, after the miracle of the great catch of fish as we read in Luke 5:8, “When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.”  Peter suddenly recognized the presence of God in the Person of Jesus, and he worshipped him and was conscious of his own imperfection and sinfulness in the presence of this Holy One. Then again in Matthew 16, we read of Peter’s confession: “He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven,” (verses 15-17). Thomas too confessed Jesus as Lord in the upper room when the Lord Jesus appeared to him, and allowed Thomas to feel the nail prints in His hands and the mark of the spear in His side as we read in John 20:28, “And Thomas answered and said unto him, My LORD and my God”.

But now, my dear friend, how is Jesus Lord?  The very essence of the term “Lord” is obedience. In feudal times, a lord was one who owned the land and the people under his rule; one to be immediately obeyed. And so it is with our Lord Jesus—He is to be reverenced and obeyed. We read in Matthew 14:21, “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him”. Now, I must say that not only did the Lord Jesus himself perfectly fulfil the prophesies of the Old Testament showing that He was indeed Christ, but the greatest proof of all was his resurrection from the dead. We read in Matthew 16:1, “From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day”. And why must the Christ be Killed?  In 1 John 4:9-10, we read, “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”  Propitiation means a sacrifice to turn away the wrath of God towards us because of our sins; and so the Lord Jesus, God’s Son, was sent into the world to be that sacrifice, that we might live through Him.

My dear friend, Jesus is God incarnate, and He demonstrated that He was the Christ, not only by perfectly fulfilling the Old Testament prophesies regarding Him, but also in purchasing our pardon at Calvary’s cross. When he rose from the dead, He demonstrated once and for all that He was Lord and Savior, sent from God to do us good. He is also the King of Glory, who will one day come and rule on David’s throne as we read in Psalm 24.  He is definitely my Lord—He saved me and will one day take me home to be with Himself. Is He your Lord too?  I pray it is so!  (427.2)  (SF)