Monday, 27 December 2010

Special appearance

I hope you all have had a good Christmas, and that you take some time for serious reflection on the person who was born at Bethlehem and the purpose of that birth. 

The Lord mentioned His birth specifically on only one occasion, "To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world" (John 18 v 37).  In this statement we see the Lord refer to both His humanity and His deity, because it wasn't just the case that He was born, but He also actively came into the world.  We find a similar statement in Isaiah 9 v 6, "For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given".  The child born of Mary at Bethlehem was the Son given by God in heaven. 

In Hebrews 10 we can actually read the Lord's words as He left heaven to enter into humanity, He speaks about how the Old Testament sacrifices did not satisfy God's demands against sin (how could they?  Animals can't take the place of humans - they only served as illustrations), and for that reason God had a body prepared for His Son so that He could offer that body in sacrifice for us (Hebrews 10:5-7, 10).

Had He not come there would have been no hope for any of us, but because He came there is hope for all of us.  Perhaps 2010 has been a hard year for you, and maybe 2011 looks bleak, but just as the darkness of Bethlehem was illuminated by the light of heaven when Christ was born, so your darkness can give way to light if you take God's gift of salvation in Christ.

"Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift" (2Corinthians 9 v 15)