Contend Earnestly: The Christmas Story

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Christmas Story

Until we get our freind Tony switched over to the new blogger, I will be placing this on the site on his behalf:

In “The Beginning” God created the heavens and the earth and He created man in His own image. He loved man and dwelt with man in the garden. Man was sinless and was not ashamed to be in the presence of the Almighty.

Man rebelled against God and sinned by disobeying the Lord’s command thus creating shame and separation between man and God. From that point until now the relationship between God and man has been broken. God continues to love man but man’s sin keeps flaring up in each and every person born. Even though God’s pattern of redemption is seen over and over throughout the bible man is still hopeless.

God’s plan of redemption which requires blood atoning sacrifice is displayed in Genesis 3 when the Lord Himself provides the sacrifice and installs the substitutionary sacrificial system for the cleansing of sin.

Gen 3:21 The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife, and clothed them.

God grants grace and mercy on man in the garden. Cain slays his brother and yet God grants mercy again. Man’s sin gets so bad that the Lord wipes out the entire earth except for one man who He shows His grace to in Noah.

Generation after generation God is faithful and merciful and man still struggles with his sin. God chooses for Himself the nation of Israel as His people and even though miracle after miracle is put on display for the world to see His people still struggle to be obedient.

God sends leaders and Judges to rule over His people but they still fall very short of His statutes despite having God anointed leaders and His written commandments. God’s plan also included kings but these men too proved to be fallible and in most cases more sinful than even the people of Israel and the world.

In loving discipline God spends thousands of years placing man on the anvil in order to mold and craft them into obedient followers but nothing works. God even uses the rulers and nations of the world to conquer and divide Israel in order to wake His people up.

Throughout the ages there is always a remnant of people both Jew and Gentile who do love and follow the Lord God Almighty but even they cannot have victory over sin. Lamb and bull are sacrificed as an offering for sin but the price for atonement is never fully paid.

While being held captive in their own land the Israelites are under the oppression of one of the most powerful empires in world history. There is no peace and little hope. The Lord has spared them from the Egyptians, Babylonians, Persians, and other nations but this seems futile.

If only a king were born! Not any king, but the chosen one. Emmanuel, God with Us. The Messiah! He would destroy our enemies. He would free us from bondage and lead us.

Then it happened. In a manger with animals and shepherds the king was born. Only a few understood who the baby was. Zacharias filled with the Holy Spirit knew that the baby was the one who would accomplish redemption for His people and raise up a horn of salvation. Mary and Joseph knew that this was the son of the Most High and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. Some shepherds knew a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And multitude of angels praised God for they knew that the Savior was born!

And we know. What a glorious day. Oh how long so many had waited. And know we too can partake in the day of our life when our Savior was born. Not only was it the beginning of Jesus’ life on earth but it was the beginning of our new life. Without Christ we too would be helpless without hope as many others have been throughout the generations. There is nothing we can do apart from Christ to be forgiven of our sin. There are not enough bulls to sacrifice and there are not great kings to follow that could give us peace on earth.

God With Us! God being born for us. God dying on the cross for us. God conquering death thus sealing our fate. Oh what a happy day, when Jesus washed my sins away. The birth of Christ provided the path for a reunion with the Lord God Almighty to once again be in His presence without sin, unashamed in His glory.

Never forget how special the Christmas Story is.


Josh said...


Merry Christmas. I am thankful I found your blog. Keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

This sounds alot like "The Salvation Plan Story" which I embrace fully. My question to you is where is the rest of the story? Yes, the rest of the story. Like, the exchanging of gifts, shopping like crazy, and all of the other traditions we do during this time. How and when did these man made traditions ever come into the Christmas story? I like Christmas very much; but as someone who is trying to follow after Jesus Christ I sometimes get sucked up into these traditions. Maybe a blog post about how Christmas changed from what you explained to what it has now become today.

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