Sunday, December 9th
Hebrews 2:14-18 | I John 4:7-19
In Jesus, we come face to face with the fullness of God’s love. Beyond a fraction and more than a portion, the limitless love of God takes on flesh and inhabits our humanity. The love of God is active and on display throughout the Old Testament, but it is at Christmas that the greatest expression of God’s love is revealed, through Jesus Christ.
Since God alone can embody the full perfection of His love, Jesus Christ enters our world fully God and fully man. This paradox is what we call the incarnation. While it takes center stage with the arrival of Christ, the incarnation of God is a defining reality for every season of our lives and is the foundation of hope throughout history. With the incarnation, “we come face to face with the unutterably glorious depth of the gospel: God has given us himself.”* The gift of perfect love is the Giver Himself. This is the center of our Christmas celebration and the hope of the world for all time.
Heavenly Father, we praise You for the gift of perfect love in Jesus Christ at Christmas. Because of the incarnation, we can walk daily with the joy of new life in You and the hope of life eternal with You in Heaven! (I John 5:11-12)
*Marcus Johnson & John Clark, The Incarnation of God. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2015), 69.
Tuesday, December 11th
In Awe of You
John 1:14-18 | Heb. 1:1-3
As Christmas draws near, manger scenes pop up in front yards and on church lawns. Mary and Joseph huddle within a stable, as shepherds and a handful of sheep approach the scene. Our gaze moves to the newborn in the manger. It is a familiar sight for many of us. But has it grown so familiar that we are no longer moved to worship this child? Has the baby sleeping peacefully in the hay merely become a heartwarming picture of Christmas?
The son born to the virgin Mary is the One who holds the Name above every name. The child in the manger is the One who spoke the galaxies into existence and knows every star by name. While settled in his mother’s arms, this newborn sustains all things by His word. The frail frame of this infant is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His Father. Clothed in our flesh, with eyes open and heart beating, God is with us!
Heavenly Father, lead us to worship Your Son as we reflect on His glorious and humble arrival into our world. Please forgive us and revive our hearts when the truths of Christmas become familiar or stale to us. May we be caught up in awe-filled praise as we celebrate the birth of Emmanuel – God with us!
Thursday, December 13th
His Glorious Descent
John 1:9-13 | Gal. 4:4-7
Love came down at Christmas. This phrase, the title of a poem and popular song, is often spoken this time of year. Though simply worded, it is loaded with transforming truth. In celebrating Christ’s birth at Christmas, we proclaim the arrival of Jesus Christ – the Word made flesh – into our world. God’s descent to us in the person of Christ reveals the humbling reality that we cannot reach Him. Leaving the purity and glory of Heaven, the Son of God comes to us, making it possible for us to be redeemed and brought into God’s family as sons and daughters.
This is the scandal of the Gospel and the glorious truth of Christmas. “We do not [pierce] his unapproachable light; he penetrates our unsearchable darkness… [the] infinite and eternal God storms space and time to confront us face to face in the face of Christ.”*
Heavenly Father, we can never thank You enough for sending your beloved Son into our lost world. We will never know a greater love than Jesus Christ. While we were consumed in sin and walking in darkness, Jesus came as the Light, that in believing in Him, we would be called children of God.