“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)
The Christmas story is incredible. It’s a story none other. I have never quite understood what actually happened that unbelievable night, the night that forever changed history and hearts of millions of people.
Now when I think about it, my heart aches in awe and my mind whirls in wonder. I’ve always been amazed at how God chose to place his Son into our world. He could have done it any way he wanted. But he chose to enter the world in difficult times under difficult circumstances as a helpless infant who must be cared for by parents who were young and who had weaknesses just like you and me – for all mankind, God became flesh in the form of a small, harmless, vulnerable little baby. The Almighty Creator of the universe sleeping where the sheep and goats have eaten their grain and hay. That God would love us so much as to reduce himself to such an unfavorable beginning.
The King of kings and Lord of lords came into this world in the most humble of ways. He came from the perfect realm of heaven to a dirty, selfish, sinful world because he loves us that much.
The people prayed and waited for God to fulfill his promise of sending a great messiah. They were waiting for a savior to deliver them from Roman rule. They expected a young, strong man; a man with wealth and prestige. A brave, mighty warrior who would be highly respected and successful. He would be a powerful ruler and reign as king then, because God is God, he gave them a baby.
Yes. A tiny, helpless baby.
This baby would walk on the earth.
He would burp, pass gas, and catch a cold.
He would experience pain and heart break at the death of his best friend.
He would heal the sick.
He would feed over 4,000 people with 7 loaves of bread and a few small fish.
He would walk on water.
He would be a great teacher.
He would hang out with sinners.
He would be praised. He would be doubted.
He would be betrayed.
He would be mocked.
He would be hated.
He would be sought after and plotted to kill.
He would be accused and spit on.
He would be whipped and scourged.
He would get nails hammered into his hands and feet.
He would die the worst death known to man.
He would be crucified on a cross.
He knew all of this before he came to earth.
So why did he choose this path? Why did he choose to leave heaven to walk the earth and be crucified? For me. For you. For all people.
Why? Because there was no substitute. He couldn’t command another to do it. It had to be him – the perfect justification for our sin. There was no better or more wise way.
Why? Because he wanted to show us how much he loved us; that he would be willing to go through anything, even death, to win our hearts.
His death saved us from our death. His death gave us eternal life in heaven with him. His death allowed us to freely enter into the presence of God. His death was the ultimate sacrifice for the forgiveness of our sins.
He began this incredible “I’m-with-you” journey as a little baby boy wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger. How humble God’s love is.
Jesus is the child given to the world so you and I can become God’s child. He is glorious and yet he chose not to hide or protect that glory, but instead he shared it so we could find it too, in Jesus – the human face of God. Our long-awaited Savior is born! Get caught up in the great joy of this child!