Monday, November 30, 2009

The Real Gift of Christmas

The season of Christmas is upon us along with the burden of performance, which is at its peak. At no other time do we sense such a need to show those we love or care about the epitome of our feelings towards them. As with each passing year, the knowledge of past failures mount to the point that the season is looked upon with dread. This is not what the season is supposed to bring, its purpose is to bring joy.

Long ago in the divine love of God, he made a promise. It was a promise not based on performance, loyalty, or desire, but out of pure love. We all know that Mary accepted the angel’s proposal without consideration of the eventual cost to herself or to the one she would give birth. However, have we ever stopped to consider why God choose this particular way? The answer is simple, God establishes the rules and because they are perfect in every way, he will not violate his own Holy Law. Never once, did he stop to count the cost or back away from the ultimate sacrifice that would consummate that promise.

When the Lord gave Moses his Holy Law, he made certain provisions within the Law for redemption. Whenever an Israelite found themselves in such dire straits that they would have to sell their ancestral home, they were to submit themselves to their family elder who is their “kinsman redeemer.” The responsibility of the kinsman redeemer was to buy back or pay off the debt of their family member so that the ancestral property would not fall into foreign hands.

The earth was a gift to man, but the title deed of the earth was lost to Satan, when sin entered the world. Jesus was born to become our Kinsman Redeemer. In order for Jesus to accomplish his responsibility, he had to become a human. It was decided long ago the way Jesus would enter the world, not as a full-grown man, but as a helpless babe that would grow and experience all that we experience, but without rebellion against God.

To show that God’s salvation was for everyone, the king of glory was not born in a palace, where he would be pampered and isolated, but to an uneducated couple from a small town that no one respected. He further demonstrated his love with the first invitees to his royal birth, they were shepherds, the lowest class of all. The Lord found no shame in becoming a slave in order to save all those who would come seeking him. He lived the ultimate standard of love, a love that knows no bounds, no reservation, and no status.

Take a moment this season and look to the example this season represents. Look beyond the gifts, decoration, songs and gatherings. Listen for these words in the night sky, “I bring you good news of great joy, born this night in the city of David is the savior, he is Christ the Lord” Let your heart hear the angels praise, “Glory to God in the Highest, peace on earth, goodwill to men.” The only Son of God took on flesh and came into the world to deliver in person God’s message that we are his most beloved creations.

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