December 22, 2016
Our middle daughter, Nicole is entering her last semester at Liberty University. She had an awesome summer internship at OneHope in FL, and has grown so much spiritually and psychologically in her four years and is so independent. Sadly, she might not move back home after graduation in May. She has promising future ahead, impacting society through her unique gifting and knack for ministry. But even bigger, God brought a wonderful guy, Connor, into her life and they are very serious. As we discussed her plans and life, the conversation moved to having babies, which Nicole was designed to have and enjoy many. She is so excited to be a mom.
Thinking of grandkids, I began always dream about whether they would play sports, or an instrument, or both. I fantasized about all kinds of classic childhood activities, sitting on Santa’s lap, reading stories together, watching cartoons, going to Disney, talking to them about God, and the wonderful possibilities that would be available to them as they grew up through each different stage of life. What they would look like? What interests, gifts, and skills they would have? Who would their friends be, was their spouse born yet, what jobs would they pursue, and what would their children be like? Wow, I realized, my kids, and their kids, were born to live!
Then it made me think of the One whose purpose in life was being born to … die! But as Eternal God, He could not die. So on that first Christmas over 2,000 years ago, He became the unique God-man when He entered human history as a babe in a manger. He knew when He left the splendors of Heaven to come down to earth, becoming once and forever a member of the human race, that He was born to die! Our Heavenly Father gives us a glimpse of that truth through Jesus’ physical birth in that humble stable in Bethlehem. This powerful reality was made so evident through the simple “swaddling clothes” in which He was wrapped – clothes set apart for burial of the dead!
The overwhelming truth of this is that He was willing to die. He was not forced or coerced. Scripture tells us, ”…who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God. But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of man.” (Philippians 2:6-7)
It’s Christmas time again, and for me that means Jesus, simply Jesus! And despite man’s attempt to distort and destroy it in every way possible, the old, old story has never changed. The simple truth is that man was lost in sin, separated from God, without hope … without eternal life, and then … JESUS CAME! Imagine that! Into this troubled world came an event that changed everything! God entered human history. God became a man!
Jesus left heaven for one reason, to die on a cross to reconcile to God everyone who would believe in Him. The sinless, spotless Lamb of God gave Himself so that we might have eternal life. Born to die! What love! What sacrifice! Darkness pierced with light! Never has there been a greater need for the Savior of the world! In this dark hour of history, Jesus shines more brightly than ever as the “Light of the World!” It was in the “fullness of time” that He came and when the time is right He will fulfill His promise to return and take us home. That is the Christmas message! That is our assured hope!
Today, think of your destiny. For what would you die? Would you have chosen to be born if your knew your main role was to die a violent death? For the Christian, everyday is Christmas! But in this season that we set apart to commemorate the unique event of the Incarnation of our Lord, Satan will use everything he can to take our eyes off of Jesus and the true meaning of Christmas … that He was BORN TO DIE! FOR YOU! May you make your Christmas one that will fill your heart with this truth. Whether you accept His death for your life, or you reject His death and try to be perfect on your own is your decision, so choose well.
Dear Heavenly Father, I can never begin to thank You enough for sending our Lord Jesus to die for my sins and every sin ever committed by the human race. Thank You for His willingness to fulfill Your plan to reconcile all people back to You. I can never begin to understand such love. I am humbled and overwhelmed when I think that Jesus, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, left Heaven to identify himself with the filth of this world of sin. Oh Father, purify my life so that I may be obedient to You, live the life that is pleasing to You, and bring honor and glory to Him. I pray this in the name of the One who was born to die, Jesus Christ; And all God’s children say – AMEN!
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6