And, no, we’re not writing about all the glitter and glitz of Christmas as it’s celebrated today. Without doubt, there are some gorgeous displays of lights and ingenuity this time of the year, but, as with our last post on Christmas, we’re thinking of another day, a day which could not have been more opposite to today.
True, there were a couple of bright spots in that day of scandal, as we labeled it. There was a visit by a few shepherds at the birth itself. There was a visit perhaps a year or two later by an entourage which had traveled hundreds of miles to bring gifts to and worship the little one. Their gifts, by the way, probably financed the family’s trip to and stay in Egypt. This is not to leave out the angelic visits to Mary and Joseph explaining what was going on.
But for the most part, there was more shadow than light in that event.
So what was it that made this day worthy of remembrance?
Why should we care about something that happened 2000 years ago? Is there anything else that happened back then that anybody cares about today?
Why this day?
It’s not about anything that happened “outside”. It’s not even about Joseph or Mary, though a large part of professing Christendom has made it about her. Indeed, it seems, for the most part, that they’ve made everything about her.
No, no, the day is special because of the Baby Himself.
But why this baby? There may have been several other babies born in Israel that day. Certainly, world-wide, there were probably hundreds of babies born that day.
So. why this One?
John 1:14 says that He became flesh. Philippians 2:7 says He took the form of a servant.
Who does that? Nobody has any choice in the matter. We don’t ask to be born. Our kids will sometimes remind us of that.
This One did ask.
All the arrangements for what happened at Bethlehem, both leading up to and after, were made before God said, “Let there be light,” Genesis 1:3. See 1 Peter 1:20.
You see, John 1:1 says that this One Who became flesh was God. Oh, I know there are some who knock on your door who will say that He was only “a” god. But if that were true, and it isn’t, then there is no salvation. If only a creature, as JWs insist, then Jesus would have had all He could do to make it back to heaven Himself, let alone bring anyone else with Him.
Philippians 1:6 says that this One Who took the form of a servant, before then was in the form of God . He didn’t think that exalted position was something to be selfishly clung to, but made Himself of no reputation.
“The form of God” means that He was truly God, just as “form of a servant” means that He was truly human.
“Made Himself of no reputation.”
Reputed illegitimate Son of a reputed adulteress.
There is an old hymn which says, “The Son of God goes forth to war.”
Yes, He did.
As a baby.
That is the splendor of Christmas.