Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Hail! Incarnate deity!

It has been called The Greatest Story Ever Told, and so it is. That God would enter into His creation to save those that had strayed from Him, and suffer for those who had sinned against Him, eclipses every other love story.

The story was played out in history when the Son of God was here 2,000 years ago, but it had been prophesied hundreds of years before He came. There are three Old Testament passages that prophecy God coming into humanity. The first is Isaiah 7:14:
Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel [meaning, God with us].
The second is Isaiah 9:6:
For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
And the third is Micah 5:2:
But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel, whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.
So there are the three prophecies of the doctrine of the incarnation, but I want you to notice something about them. In the first one we read about the virgin conceiving. How did that happen? The New Testament tells us - the angel said to Joseph, "do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit" (Matthew 1:20). So in Isaiah 7:14 the activity of the Holy Spirit is implied. (By the way, whatever is going on in Isaiah 7, it is clear that the prophecy of verse 14 goes beyond the immediate context.)

When we look at the second prophecy we find that this child who was born is a Son who was given. Who gave Him? It was God the Father of course (John 3:16). So the second prophecy presents the activity of the Father in the incarnation.

The third prophecy tells us about the activity of the Son because we read about Him as the one who actively "come[s] forth".

Three prophecies, three persons of the Trinity. Do you think this is a coincidence? Do you think this is was deliberate engineering? Did Micah say, "Isaiah had a couple of prophecies about the incarnation that present the activity of the Spirit and the Father, I will include one about the activity of the Son and that will complete the Trinity!" Of course not. This is one of the many indications of the overruling, guiding hand of God in Scripture. He is the one who coordinated the writings of these three prophecies to show the activity of the Trinity in the incarnation.

So not only is the story of the incarnation amazing, but it is also true, because it has been recorded in a book that has proven itself to be God's Word. Given that it is true, it means you are involved in the story!
This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners...
1 Timothy 1:15

Will you accept this Christmas gift of a Saviour? It's only for sinners - you have to admit and acknowledge that is a label that applies to you, no matter how good you may think you are. But it is also for all sinners, so this is for you, no matter how bad you may think you are. Take it, take Him.