Monday, December 10, 2012

What Child is This?

I've been reading through Luke this past week in preparation for Christmas day. As most of you know, the birth of Christ doesn't actually fall on December 25, but it is still an important celebration (though many get caught up in the materialism and secularism that has come to characterize Christmas) in Christian living.

Set aside Santa Claus and Christmas trees, the root of the celebration is the miraculous birth of Jesus Christ. Luke 1:67-80 records the birth of John the Baptist (the prophet born to tell of the Messiah's coming - what a task!). His father, Zechariah, sings this song (please take time to read this!):

Zechariah’s Song

67 His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied:
68 “Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
    because he has come to his people and redeemed them.
69 He has raised up a horn[c] of salvation for us
    in the house of his servant David
70 (as he said through his holy prophets of long ago),
71 salvation from our enemies
    and from the hand of all who hate us—
72 to show mercy to our ancestors
    and to remember his holy covenant,
73     the oath he swore to our father Abraham:
74 to rescue us from the hand of our enemies,
    and to enable us to serve him without fear
75     in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.
76 And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High;
    for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him,
77 to give his people the knowledge of salvation
    through the forgiveness of their sins,
78 because of the tender mercy of our God,
    by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven
79 to shine on those living in darkness
    and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the path of peace.”

Wow! His son is called the prophet of the Most High - Jesus Christ the Savior of the world! What boldness and joy John must have experienced in sharing this news! He never backed down despite being scoffed at and disregarded by many.

Oh that I may have such boldness to speak the truth - even if people call me crazy. Why? Because I know, with full assurance, the TRUTH - that Christ was born in a lowly manger to save me (and you!) from eternal punishment. He lived to die. He died on a cross as the payment for my disobedience against the One and Most Holy God. A payment I could never pay myself. I, an imperfect creature who messes up every day and cannot follow all the commands God has given 100%, have been given the most wonderful gift of all - eternal life. Oh how He loves you and me!

This Christmas, PLEASE take time to think about what God has done for you on the actual Christmas day. In sending His son Jesus Christ, He brought salvation to the world. You're not alone. You don't have to try to be perfect and get it all right on your own. You have HOPE. Hope in Jesus Christ.

For more information please read:
 two ways to live
 HOPE

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