Giving encouragement and sharing the meat of God’s Word
Sunday, December 21, 2014
The Wonder of The Incarnation
The countdown continues and we find
ourselves rushing toward our Christmas Day finale. But, has the busyness of Christmas
kept you from truly experiencing the wonder of the Incarnation
– Emmanuel – “God with us”?
I know it’s difficult with all the
shopping, baking, cleaning, and decorating, to stay focused on this amazing truth. So, let’s
take a few minutes, right now, to reflect on this glorious wonder.
Incarnation, it’s such a complex word. Nevertheless, it speaks of the moment
God, who is Spirit, stepped from eternity into time, into our world, becoming
one of us in the person of Jesus Christ. He did this to pay the death penalty
for humanity’s sin, because of His great love.
But, have you ever wondered when this
took place? I mean, was it in the stable as Mary gave birth, was it at the moment
of conception, or a different time altogether?
In today’s world, science insists life
begins only when a fetus is viable and able to live on its own. This theory
would suggest incarnation happened at Christ’s actual birth or a different time
in His life.
However, I would like you to
consider another thought. When the angel, Gabriel, delivered the message to
Mary that she would conceive of the Holy Spirit and bear a Son, he also
informed her about the miraculous pregnancy of her elderly cousin, Elizabeth. Being
overjoyed for Elizabeth, Mary left at once to visit.
As she entered the house and greeted
her cousin, Elizabeth’s baby, John, the Baptist, leaped in her womb. Why? An obstetrician
might say it is because there was a change in the mother’s emotions or he heard
a different voice. But, in the prophetic nature of the encounter, Scripture
implies this unborn infant knew he was in the presence of the God of the Universe,
the One, whose coming he would herald, and he just couldn’t contain himself.
Thus, incarnation took place at conception,
as conception is the moment life begins.
Still, traditionally, we celebrate
birthdays. And, since we are not told the actual date of Christ’s birth, we
have adopted December 25th (originally a pagan holiday) for our
Interestingly, some Bible scholars
believe Jesus was actually born around the Feast of Tabernacles (September-October).
They base their conclusion on John 1:14, “The
Word [Jesus] became flesh and dwelt[or tabernacled] among us...” and the fact that December
is not normally a month when shepherds would be out in the fields with their
So, ponder this. If you count back
from the date of the Feast of Tabernacles, according to the days of human
gestation, anywhere from 266 to 280 days, it brings you to approximately December
25th for conception.
Therefore, in celebrating Christ’s
birth on December 25th, we are truly celebrating His INCARNATION.
And because of incarnation, we have a sinless Savior. God became flesh so He could die for our sin that we may
live with Him forever.
He loves us that much. And this, my
friends, is the amazing wonderof the Incarnation.