Our youngest son Joaquin, when he was 4 years old was in a mall on a December afternoon with his mom looking at the different Christmas decorations. Out of the blue he screams, “Santa is the King of Christmas!” My wife panicked and immediately explained to him why we celebrate Christmas.
Now while this was the response of our 4 year old then, an alien from outer space would be just as confused if he were to visit our malls these days. Looking at the decorations and listening to the songs we play on the radio, it may seem that Christmas is a lot of things except its original reason.
The Bible predicted the coming of Jesus hundreds of years before the first Christmas. The prophet Isaiah spoke in Isaiah 7:14, “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”
Immanuel is pregnant with meaning. Immanuel is God with us.
1. God With Us.
The Creator God came to be like one of us. This is central to our faith. Nothing in Christianity would make sense without it.
Jesus is God.
Because God is with us, we are assured of His power. Knowing this will tear down every limitation in our minds. Nothing is impossible with God.
Mary asked the angel how can she be pregnant since she’s not married yet. The angel answered, “With man, this is impossible. But with God, nothing is impossible.”
2. God With Us.
Jesus is God and He is with us. He identified with us and lives amongst us.
John 1:1,14 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (ESV)
Jesus became like us and dwelt among us. The word dwell is the Greek word for “tabernacle.”
In the Old Testament, God’s presence would descend every so often to meet with His people. But now, since the coming of Jesus, He is with us and dwells with His people.
Because God is with us, we are assured of His presence.
He promised in Hebrews 13:5, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (ESV)
3. God With Us.
The good? The moral? The perfect?
Thank God that He so loved the world that He gave His son. Who did He come for? Not for the health but the sick. Not the found but the lost.
Jesus came to seek and save that which was lost. He came for the messed up people like you and me.
Every other religion will say just follow a set of values and a list of rules. If you do this, you will do well.
But Jesus came and said, self-effort can’t hack it. You and I know that we’ve tried and we’ve failed miserably.
But that God that Jesus came to live a life of perfect obedience so that by imputation, we can vicariously take on a perfect moral record by what He has done on the cross if we accept Him and surrender our life to Him.
All throughout Scripture, there are people who failed that God accepted, called and used.
Abraham was deceitful.
David was an adulterer and murderer.
Jacob was a liar.
Jonah was arrogant and had no compassion.
Miriam was a gossip.
Moses had a short fuse.
Elijah was suicidal.
Peter denied Christ.
Paul ordered Christians to be killed.
You and I can add our names on the list. Thanks be to God who has given us salvation through Jesus Christ.
God loves you just the way you are.
But remember, God loves you too much to let you remain just the way you are.
Have a great week ahead.