Christmas Eve thoughts….
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us… John 1:14 NIV 1984
Luke 2:9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” NIV 1984 underline added
Have you ever wondered why Jesus came to the earth? What was the purpose of this? How does it affect and effect us?
If you look carefully at verses 10 and 14 I believe you will see the answers (or some of the answers) to these questions.
Verse 10… good news of great joy… For many years, I thought the point was the good news. But the truth of the matter is that the good news is that there is great joy waiting for us. And, if God thought it important enough to send the angels to announce this great joy, it must be important for us to know about it and to experience it.
While verse 10 tells us what it is, verse 11 tells us where to find it, but the answer is not geographical. Yes it was in the town of David, but more specifically, it is found in the Savior. Only in the Lord Jesus Christ will you find the joy that God has planned for you. Only through fellowship with Jesus, through the Holy Spirit will you know the joy that is called the good news.
The word used for joy is “chara” which can be translated as a greatly exceeding calm delight. This is a bi-product of knowing Jesus as your Lord but it is also a primary reason that Jesus came to earth.
The affect on us is an internal emotion that can only be understood by those who experience it.
Verse 14…peace to men… To me, this used to mean that eventually everyone would be at peace with each other. And while this will happen (after Jesus returns) it is not the peace this verse refers to. The peace in this verse is the new peace between man and God; the end of the enmity between God and mankind. The peace that was established when the curtain was ripped (Mat 27:51, Mr 15:38, Lu 23: 45, Heb 10: 13-22) giving us total access to the Father through the Son.
The effect is twofold. First, because our sin debt is paid, God is now free to lavish His love on us. Second, because our sin debt is paid, we are now able to receive that love.
I believe joy and peace are the two most important reasons why the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. But keep this in mind, you will not be able to experience the joy until you accept the peace.
But some teachers would stop there and have you think this was all about us. And yes we will receive benefits of the joy and peace, but the ultimate goal is for the Father to receive glory through the joy and peace that He provides.
Dear friends, as you enjoy this Christmas season (regardless of your personal situation), realize that true joy and peace are only found in and through the Son that was born in a manger, died on a cross, and is now interceding on your behalf at the right hand of the Father. Once you accept the peace that Jesus has secured for you, then you will be able to experience the joy that He intends for you. Embrace this and you will have the Christmas spirit! Embrace this and the Father will be glorified!
That is why the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us.
May you be blessed by the Word of God