Jesus of the Birth
We are definitely getting ahead of ourselves by talking about Jesus’ birth. That is a story often reserved for the holiday season. However, with this month’s theme being Jesus, we thought we’d take our blog series from beginning to now to discuss the awesomeness of Jesus at every stage.
Frequently, discussion surrounding Jesus’ birth centers around the idea of new beginnings. Yes, a Savior has been born, the deliverer arrived to free Israel (from the bondage of sin of course). The camera zooms in on an untidy manger where a halogen glow drives focus to the miracle virgin birth. This momentous occasion cannot be dismissed nor trivialized.
Simultaneously, while we walk through the stages of Jesus’ life and ministry chronologically, our analysis will occur in reverse chronological order. What do we mean? Well, instead of seeing Jesus’ birth as the beginning of the end, today we will look at how Jesus’ birth is the end of the beginning.
See, Jesus’ arrival did not merely signify that the devil would soon be defeated. For thousands of years prior, heaven and earth looked forward to the Messiah. When God kicked Adam and Eve out of the Garden, a promise declared a deliverer would soon crush the serpent’s head. God’s numerous illustrations given to Moses often pointed towards Jesus (think Moses striking the rock, then supposed to speak to it foreshadowing Jesus’ ministry). God’s covenant with His people pointed towards the Messiah, and even the prophecies given to Daniel explicitly mention the coming of the Messiah (see Daniel 9). Hebrews 11:13 says,
These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off. And were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the Earth.
In other words, many looked forward to Jesus’ birth, and died in faith. Yet, while the vast majority of them did not live to see the fulfilling of the prophecy (save for Anna and Simon as far as we know), Jesus’ birth marked the end of looking forward, because Jesus arrived. Jesus came – as promised.
A promise was made in the garden millennia ago, and it was fulfilled. A long time ago, another promise was made – that Jesus would come again and receive us to Himself, so we could be wherever He is. People wonder why we keep saying that Jesus is coming again, and He is coming again soon. The urgency is not apparent in the majority of the world today. We have proclaimed it for so long, why has it not happened yet?
Here’s the thing, Jesus kept His promise and came the first time – on time, to save us from the wages of sin. He has promised that He will come back. And just like before, Jesus will come again. The birth solidifies our trust in Him. It happened once, it will happen again.
We are not meant to always look back on the birth at Christmas time. Life for the Christian is not just about going to church regularly and raising a family to be good people. Friends, it is more than that. The end is not a cushy life here on Earth, but a Perfect Life in Heaven. This is why we continue to herald Jesus’s second coming, and at that time, those that have chosen to live with Him will see that opportunity. As a family we look forward in faith. Some of us will not live to see the Promise, but we see the promise afar off. We are persuaded of it. We have embraced it. And we realize, that we are strangers and pilgrims on this Earth.