I don't know about you, but I just love Christmas and all the festivity of the season that goes along with it. :) Baking, giving presents, decorating, singing Christmas carols....it's so much fun! The only thing that would make this season feel a little more Christmasy is if the weather were cooler than 82 degrees. :)
In all the hustle and bustle, it is easy to forget the real reason we're celebrating Christmas. Jesus is the reason! He humbled himself and came to earth as a servant in the form of a baby.
~~Philippians 2:6-10~~"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 men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;"
Wow. Think about that. God has exalted his Son and has given him a name above every name, even above the angels. JESUS.
~~Hebrews 1:4~~"Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they."
Because of his limitless love for mankind, Jesus, the Prince of Peace, the everlasting Father, the I Am, Immanuel (God with us), came to endure all the suffering we, as sinful fallen humans, rightly deserved. Now whoever believes on Jesus receives life everlasting from the Father.
~~John 3:16-17~~"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believe in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved."
~~1 Timothy 1:15~~"This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief."
Isaiah 53:3-12 is a wonderful passage about Christ and his suffering. Let's take a look at it.
"He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our face from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgement: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand. He shall see the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors."
While reading this passage the other day, several things stood out to me. First, he was wounded for our sins, our transgressions. And because he suffered so, the sin debt is paid and we can have peace with God through his Son. Though he was sinless, Jesus was falsely accused and numbered with the sinners. But he didn't open his mouth, he didn't protest, he didn't try to defend himself. Instead, he willingly gave himself, made intercession for the sinners and bare all sin upon himself.
Salvation through Jesus is the best gift ever given, and I sincerely hope each one of you has accepted it. :)
Ring the bells, ring the bells, let the whole world know,
Christ was born in Bethlehem many years ago. Born to die that man
might live, came to earth new life to give, born of Mary, born so low,
many years ago. God the Father gave His Son, gave His own beloved
One, to the wicked sinful earth, to bring mankind His love, new birth.
Ring the bells, ring the bells, what a glorious morn! Men and angels
worship Him, singing Christ is born! Born to die on Calvary, born to set
His people free, God himself in human form, tell it! Christ is born! He has
left His royal throne, He has come to claim His own, Christ the Lord has come
to earth, go spread the news of Jesus' birth. Ring the bells, ring the bells, let
the whole world know Christ the Savior lives today as He did so long ago!
Who can add to Christmas? The perfect motive is that God so loved the world. The perfect gift is that He gave His only Son. The only requirement is to believe in Him. The reward of faith is that you shall have everlasting life. -Corrie Ten Boom
The son of God became a man to enable men to become sons of God. - C.S. Lewis
Wishing you all a merry Christmas with Christ the center of your celebration. :)
With much joy and love in the Lord,