Devotionals Tragedy!


A very blessed Christmas to you as we remember God’s Incarnation! The Day has arrived! Christmas Day. I don’t say “Merry Christmas” … I say Blessed Christmas” because I want to veer away from merriment for a while and lift up Christmas as a blessed occasion because on it we celebrate God coming to earth … we celebrate the Gospel … we celebrate God Incarnate. You see, there is no Bloody Friday and Resurrection Sunday without God the Son coming as God Incarnate. That is why Christmas is blessed and therefore we ought to say … Blessed Christmas to all fellow believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ! We have taken a journey over this past week … looking at how God, in love promised a Messiah right back in Genesis 3:15. We saw that in the midst of tragedy, God demonstrated His love for man by giving man hope in his lost-ness. God then promised the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that they would become a great people. In doing this He settled Jacob and his family in Egypt to grow, develop and mature them, all to protect them from dying out. Once strong and numerous he took them through hardships to have them released from the bondage they landed up in in Egypt. The land He had promised to Abraham became their place where they settled. As time passed God had Solomon build a Temple replicating the Tabernacle in which He dwelt amongst the people. There they were under His Rule. These three concepts of a People, a Place and a Rule pre-figured the Messianic Kingdom of the Lord Jesus, where He would have His people (followers of Jesus), dwelling in a place (the Heavenly and Eternal Promised Land), living under the rule of King Jesus who is Lord of all lords and King of all kings. From promise we moved to consider God’s method of achieving Messiah’s arrival. We saw that the person, Messiah is Himself God and will accomplish His Rescue Plan to deliver man from sin through the brutality of the Crucifixion. But how would God “do” the Rescue Plan? That we saw in He Himself becoming man. God took our flesh and became God Incarnate so that He who is alone worthy could pay the required sin price to save man from sin. So what is all this about? Is the sole intention about saving man? Was everything God did, starting in the Garden, going all the way through to Jesus’ Ascension, all about man? We are tempted to shout … “YES, YES, YES!” With the greatest respect for all theologians, preachers and Bible commentators we need to say … NO! Or at bare minimum one could say … “YES – NO!” Let consider the purpose of Messiah’s coming.

1) Yes, the benefits of Messiah’s meritorious work was for saving sinners. Remember, we have tried to show that Christmas … the Virgin Birth … God Incarnate cannot be understood or appreciated unless one sees the big picture. This picture is us capturing God’s story from Genesis chapter one (A Good God Creating all things good); moving towards chapter two where God breathes life into man making him a living being (body and soul – physical and spiritual) and giving His probationary command (To Adam – don’t eat from a certain tree); arriving in chapter three we saw that the enemy of God seducing the woman into not only eating that which was forbidden, he spoke untruths to her which she believed. She encouraged her husband (Adam) to eat, and when he did, he sinned not only for himself, but substitutionally for the race, because he broke the probationary command. Here man lost his innocence, now knowing good from evil. He lost fellowship with God and was banished from God’s earthly paradise. Yet within all this were saw that God’s love for man prevailed and He promised a Messiah (Genesis 3:15). Although it took many, many epochs for the Messiah to come, he arrived

Ro 5:6 at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.

Because He was God Incarnate, He was born without sin and could pay the sin price on man’s behalf … and did. So yes, Messiah did come to save lost souls … but that is not the full picture …

2) The satisfaction of the Messiah’s meritorious work was for the Glory of the Godhead! This beloved is the prime reason for the Incarnation! You might disagree, but follow this:

Lk 2:14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

As soon as Mary gave birth, on that very first Christmas Evening, an angel followed by a heaven choir appears to shepherds who were largely rejected by society. The former bringing the Gospel according to an angel and the latter awakes the heaven with their singing. But why the singing? The Messiah had come and He had come for a purpose … yes to save … but what was the focal point of the song? It was the glory of God … not the salvation of man. That was secondary! See that? Glory to … God … in the highest! God created everything good and within this good creation was man. He gave man a soul to be different from all the other animals … so that God could have union with this physical creature who has a soul. God appearing in the Garden of Eden indicates this. There was sweet intimate fellowship before the fall. The Psalms, which are songs indicate this. Though man was corrupt, David in particular demonstrates the adoration of God in the Psalms. But here in Luke we have the most glorious song, making heaven alive with the echoes of Glory ascending throughout everywhere … and into the Throne Room of Glory. Beloved see this … Jesus’ coming was to pay the sin price to bring souls to God, to grant forgiveness and salvation. That objective would bring God the greatest glory … even though it would only be realized at Calvary!

3) The satisfaction of Messiah’s meritorious work was for those enjoying God’s favor!

Lk 2:14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

Before creation God chose a people to be holy and blames in His sight. It is upon these that His favor rests … not upon all mankind! These are those who respond to the Gospel, believe, repent and are saved. They have God’s favor! The Gospel invitation, from the first Christmas is that whoever believes in God’s Rescue Plan through Jesus and Jesus alone shall be saved. They enjoy His favor. Are you one of these?

Father, thank You for the Gospel. Thank You that You sent Messiah in the shape of Your Blessed Son Jesus Christ. Thank You that the invitation is to whosoever shall believe … shall be saved. All Glory to You Father for the first and continuing Christmas’ … for You alone are worthy! Amen.

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