Read - Luke 2:1-7 - 1 Tim 3:16
Message - Alan Burke
Today many of you will be unwrapping presents surrounded by family, for other you are alone and all you have are memories of days that have gone by when the wains were all excited, or maybe for you this day is a day just like any other. Where ever you are this day and what ever you are doing I want to draw your attention to the reality of what happened in the incarnation, how the eternal Son of God became Man. It was what God had promised long ago that he would do, by sending one to crush the head of the serpent (Gen 3:15). And it is this promise came to fruition in the coming of Jesus Christ the Son of the Most High God. He was born of the virgin Mary, made flesh and blood and yet was without sin.
Remember though the setting of the announcement, Nazareth a nothing town that was unimportant and of no consequence, the Status of Mary who was a nobody, how Jesus came into this world in the humblest of circumstance laid in a feeding trough, wrapped in swaddling cloths. What a way for the King of kings to enter the world. Martin Luther makes the point that God might well “have gone to Jerusalem and picked out Caiaphas’s daughter, who was fair, rich, clad in gold embroidered raiment and attend by a retinue of maids in waiting. But God preferred a lowly maid from a mean town”. Our Saviour came in the humblest of circumstances, he left the splendour of Glory to become one of us to be lifted upon a cross for sinners like us, he suffered as the divine Son of God, giving his life for us. This is the humiliation of Christ, In his being born, and that in a low condition, made under the law, undergoing the miseries of this life, the wrath of God, and the cursed death of the cross (WSC 27).
In the wonder of humility, the Son of God, the second person of the trinity, Jesus Christ humbled himself for us, made in the likeness of men (Phil 2:2). He who was equal with God, who being in the very form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant (Phil 2:6). He stripped himself of the robes of his glory, and covered himself with the rags of our humanity so that he could deal with the sins of many (Heb 9:7). He traded his riches for our poverty, so that we could know Grace, it is a mystery that we can never fully understand until we come to heaven that God manifested in the flesh, born into the world, so that we who are by nature enemies of God might be called the children of God. He loved us enough to come to save us, he humbled himself for us.
Don’t loose sight of this, what Christ has done for us, that we might be reconciled to God. In the midst of what ever has happened or lies ahead of you this day and every day, don’t loose sight of what the incarnation, the humiliation of Christ means, for it is the way that we might be saved. Let praise rise within you whether you are surround by people you know and love or are isolated and alone, know the joy of sins forgiven through Christ the Saviour. For God is not aloof, removed from those whom he has created and the incarnation proves this. We have a Lord who was willing to take our humanity for the sake of our salvation (1 Tim 3:16).
Q49 Which is the second commandment?
The second commandment is, Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down thy self to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. (Exod. 20:4–6)