Chris' Corner -- Sunday, December 20, 2020
During the Christmas holiday season, just about everywhere we go through the streets and avenues of our neighborhoods we’ll come across the manger scene. We know it well. There’s a stable with domestic farm animals gathered around. The wise men are there. Mary and Joseph are looking down. Everyone is looking down at baby Jesus in the manger.
It is encouraging to think that so many people at this time of year, take the time to think of Jesus Christ, even if they picture Him in a manger wrapped in swaddling cloths. Maybe some will take a moment or two longer to think deeper about their lives and come to the Bible and learn how Jesus is so much more than a baby. We are grateful Emmanuel came to this earth and was born. But we appreciate Him so much more for His life and sacrifice for all humanity.
We can study the virgin birth of Christ. The miraculous power of the Almighty God in relationship to Jesus’ first appearance on earth is worthy of our time. But all in all Jesus is so much more than a baby in a manger! The purpose for the Messiah’s birth was to “bring peace on earth and goodwill to men,” by bringing salvation to their souls.
Compared to the entire record of Jesus’ short 33 years traveling around Palestine, there is far more written about His adult life than His birth or childhood. “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men” (Luke 2:52). Baby Jesus, grew up to be the greatest man that ever lived. He grew up to be our perfect example of what a man would do when tempted to remain without sin (Hebrews 4:15, 16). No doubt He was a beautiful baby and a perfect child growing up. But He became a perfect man to please His Father in heaven.
His Father’s plan was to save humanity from eternal condemnation. The plan called for the sacrifice of His Son. Paul wrote in Phil 2:5–8 ”Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.”
Christ came as a baby, born of a virgin, only to grow into adulthood and present God’s greatest gift to the world. That gift was Himself, not as a baby, but as a man making the decision to freely offer Himself to be crucified. Jesus said, “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.” (John 10:17, 18).
We should take Christmastime as an opportunity to tell folks about Jesus Christ, the God Man. He was the same one who faced the horrors of the cross and rose from the grave that we might follow Him out of our graves some day. Paul said, “But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep” (1 Corinthians 15:20).