Friday, November 22, 2013

The Greatest Gift of All

John 1:14 “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.  We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. “
The wonder of Creator God inhabiting flesh—it is too much for us to grasp!  Motivated by His love for us, Jesus, “who being in very nature God”, humbled himself and came into frail, sin-ridden human form so that He might show the depth and breadth of the Father’s awesome love for us.  How can we doubt His love? 

He did not come in power and majesty, as befits a King, but as a servant to all.  He revealed Himself not to the powerful, but to the humble and needy—those who acknowledged their want for Him.  He could have come demanding His rights since as Creator God He alone is worthy of praise and worship.  Instead He was entirely selfless, pouring out His life in service and sacrifice for His creation, for those He loves.

Before Jesus came to the world God’s people could only worship Him with a reverent fear—the Almighty God, whose holiness requires an impossible holiness from us.  In the presence of Almighty God Isaiah cried 6:5 “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”  Who can stand in Holy God’s presence without being destroyed by the stark comparison of His holiness to our abject sin?

When the Son of God made his residence in flesh, coming to live with us, He became touchable and approachable.  Jesus became “the one who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24), the One who “calls us friend” (John 15:15), and the One who remains constantly in us through the Holy Spirit (Heb. 13:5).

Now His children have access through Jesus to our Father, Holy God.  The writer of Hebrews proclaims, “You have not come to a mountain that can be touched and that is burning with fire; to darkness, gloom and storm; to a trumpet blast or to such a voice speaking words that those who heard it begged that no further word be spoken to them, because they could not bear what was commanded: ‘If even an animal touches the mountain, it must be stoned.”

The sight was so terrifying that Moses said, “I am trembling with fear.” But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the judge of all men, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect, to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel”,  Hebrews 12:18-24.

This season let us join in praise with the angels who observed Jesus’ departure from Heaven and appearance in the flesh on earth, proclaiming with wonder and great joy, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”  Jesus, lover of our souls, the spotless Lamb of God and King of glory, came to live with man, becoming one of us.  Could there ever be a greater gift?

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