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The Crux of Christmas

December 18, 2017

Anglican pastor Christopher Wordsworth said Psalm 89 “is a Christmas carol.” The Psalm is a cry for God to remember His promises to David. It tells the glory of the Son of David who is the Almighty God and the Eternal King.

Jesus is the Son of David. Jesus is God incarnate. Incarnation is defined as deity taking on the human form. The idea of incarnation was known before the birth Jesus. Greek myths tell of the gods appearing as humans. Yet the incarnation that is celebrated at Christmas is something different. The incarnation is God becoming man. It is the wonderful truth that God the Son took on Himself humanity. Jesus is God who became fully human while remaining fully God.

To understand the depths to which Jesus humbled Himself when He became man, remember who Jesus is. Psalm 89:6 asks, “Who in heaven can be compared unto the Lord?” What mighty hero of history can be compared to God? What Hercules, Samson or Superman can be compared to God? At best the superhuman greatness of fictional characters stir a longing for the One Mighty Hero who brings true salvation. “Who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the Lord.” He is greater than the mightiest of earth and yet He humbled Himself to become a despised, rejected man.

Christmas is a reminder of the amazing truth that God the Creator became human, that the eternal God was born of a woman, that the all powerful God was a helpless baby, that the ruler of all spent his first night in a feed trough, that the maker of heaven and earth spent the final years of his life with no where to call home and that He who is the everlasting object of angelic praise was scorned by men.

What is even more amazing is that God the Creator died. He redeemed men by His death. His death is why we celebrate Christmas. Christmas is a time to remember that God became flesh and dwelt among us and a time to remember that that the little baby in a manger was there to hang on a cross. Jesus was born to die.

It is fitting to celebrate His birth by considering His death. It is fitting to remember that the little baby Jesus would be beaten, torn and tortured on the cross. It is fitting to remember that the little baby Jesus was the lamb of God slain from the foundation of the world. It is fitting to remember that the little baby Jesus would one day shed His blood for the sin of men. It is fitting to celebrate Christmas with an eye to the crucifixion. The cross cannot be relegated to one Friday in March. The cross is the crux of all salvation and the cause of real Christmas celebration.


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