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Friday, December 23, 2016

Are We Set Apart? Happy Birthday Jesus!

For Christians, God is not just a powerful, unseen reality, somewhere out there beyond unimaginable distances of time and enormity of space.

God did something highly impossible to make Himself completely relevant and comprehensible to humankind.

 He doesn't just visit the earth, He becomes human and walks on the earth and interacts with humankind on their own level of existence.

Jesus Christ is God's Son and He is also uniquely Almighty God Himself in the flesh.

 It is remarkable that God became a real human being and lived among us as the historical Jew, known as Jesus of Nazareth, between 6BC and AD30 in Palestine.

No one could accuse God Almighty of not doing everything possible to make Himself known and revealed in such a way that any human could have known who He is and what He thinks.

 God bridged the vastness of His creation in such a way as only He could make happen.

He took His high and lofty majesty, His Holy and Righteous presence and deposited Himself in an organic carbon based meatbag of flesh.

He choose to come down here to be with us on our level of existence.

This is the nexus point of all Christian reality. That God became man.

John 1:14
14And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

What was truly kewl about all of this is that Almighty God touched some humans and gave them direct revelation into what He was going to do way in the future.

We call this prophesy.

Reading the prophesies about this event we see that Almighty God will be a Jewish man from the tribe of Judah, in King David's lineage, born in Bethlehem of a virgin, and that this child would be Almighty God Himself.

Everything to do with God is not always smooth and uncomplicated.

 We humans think that everything is going to be smooth and uncomplicated if God is involved.


Nothing could be further from the truth.

Put yourself in Jesus's mother Mary's place.

Here she is, around fifteen years of age. Betrothed, as was the Jewish custom of that day and age, to a man, destined to become his wife.

Then she suddenly finds herself pregnant.

This will make it appear to all around her, that she has been promiscuous.

And to make matters worse, a woman found in adultery must be stoned to death according to Jewish law. Frightening and numbing would be her position in life.

Her reputation in her village is surely going to be destroyed.

Holy Scripture tells it like this:

Matthew 1:18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise:

When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

Now her future husband is put in a very awkward position.

 He knows what the Jewish law requires, but he also is a just man.

He knows that there is no proof of Mary's infidelity.

Her demeanor suggest to him that what she has told him about an angel telling her that she is pregnant by the Holy Spirit just might be the truth, but he is not sure.

 He agonizes on his bed, not able to sleep, just laying there thinking about this terrible turn of events...I imagine that he eventually drops off to fitful sleep.

Matthew 1:19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily.

While he is thinking about privately putting her 'away.'

 An angel appears to him in a dream.

The angel fills him in on what is up with Mary.

Matthew 1:20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

Revelation sent from God to Joseph, in his consciousness, in a dream.


Can you imagine his relief and awe at what he is being told?

But still, even though now he knows the truth, his neighbors and family may not believe his story.

 He is still in a terrible bind of sorts.

But to him, the truth is valid, he is to take Mary as his wife inspite of what anyone thinks of the situation.

On the natural, there will be those who look at Mary in disgust and rejection.

There will be a figurative black cloud that will follow them.

Matthew 1:24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:

He understood the truth now.

All he could do is trust God, inspite of what others might think.

How many times have we been in a situation where others think ill of us.

And we are tempted to try in our own efforts to set things straight.

I once had someone accuse me of a lot of things that had no truth behind them.

 Even so much as to go to the pastors of my church with the lies.

I silently watched as my reputation as a man of God had aspersions cast against it. 

I watched as the recipients of the lies turned against me.

But I had learned to trust in God and held my peace.

I not once did anything to defend myself.

 For I knew that my God on His throne was greater then any lies sent against me.

Over a period of months the truth became known and the perpetrator of the attack against my integrity was cast out of the fellowship.

All without me saying or doing anything.

So here is Mary and Joseph in a complicated situation.

They know the truth, but will others believe the truth.

To any average person, it looked like a couple of young people making up a crazy story to cover up their fooling around.

 Back in their day, such things were not treated lightly.

Today, no one thinks much about this situation, happens all the time...right?

God Almighty comes to earth as a vulnerable defenseless baby.

The heart of Christianity. The Muslim can't believe this.

"Allah Akbar," God is great.

They say this great God would never demean himself by becoming human.

But that is exactly what happened.

Not only that, Jesus grows up and gives up His life for all of us to set us free from our sins.

John 1:29
The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Zechariah 13:6 And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands?

Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.

We celebrate the birth of the Christ child.

We say Merry Christmas to one another in reference to this event in world history.

Not 'Happy Holidays.' To those who know of the truth, it is the most incredible knowledge that God became flesh, born as a baby.

Christians should never be found guilty of saying 'Happy Holidays' when they know the truth of this event of a baby's birth.

An event that changed the course of the world.

An event that sent a message down through the ages to you and I. An event that was written in the stars above.

Matthew 2
1Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

2Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

We are told in this same chapter of Matthew:

10When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.


What was it about this star?

 It was not the star, but what they had located by the star.

 Almighty God incarnatio, God being in human flesh, entering the physical realm as a baby.

Jesus Christ, the God~man!

No one could make up such a story.

No one could foretell of all events that would surround this birth, hundreds of years in advance and then have Holy men of God prophesy of the events.

This is what sets us Christians apart.

We celebrate the birth of our King, our Lord and savior.

No happy holidays no Festivus, no Kwanzaa.

Happy Birthday Jesus!

Joy to the world!


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