Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I wanted to take a little time to share with you the importance of the One who we celebrate on Christmas Day: Jesus Christ. Did you know that Jesus is the only Person in history whose being born into the world was foretold literally thousands of years in advance?

The Old Testament of the Bible (the collection of God’s word that were recorded before Jesus’ birth) is filled with passages about the Jewish Messiah, the One who would be born the Savior of the world. All told, there are about 108 individual prophecies (predictions) about Jesus Christ’s birth, life, and death, hundreds, or even thousands of years before He was born in Bethlehem. These were given by God so that when the Messiah the Jews had been waiting for appeared, there would be many signs to prove it was truly Him. Throughout the Old Testament Jesus was referred to by many names; one of the most famous passages is found in Isaiah 9:6, “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given...and His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

This same prophet was told, “The virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel (which means God with Us),” Isaiah 7:14. This same Son was born over 2000 years ago in Israel, as testified in Matthew’s Gospel, “She (Mary) will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins,” Matthew 1:21. The name ‘Jesus’ means ‘Jehovah saves.’ It was this unique Child predicted to be born by Isaiah the prophet almost 800 years beforehand that was born in Bethlehem to Mary, who was a virgin when she gave birth. Jesus was qualified like no other to fit the criteria for being the Savior. He was born a Man, and was indeed human, but was also in fact God in the flesh; God come down from Heaven to provide salvation for our sins by dying on the cross for us. This was His reason for being born into the world, so that He could, by His sinless life, offer to the Father a payment for sins that sinful mankind could not. Thus when someone puts their faith in Jesus Christ as their Savior, trusting that He paid the penalty for our sins when He suffered and died on the cross, we are reconciled to God, and through faith in Jesus Christ we are saved. Without providing a Savior, and the sacrifice the Savior made for us, we could never come into Heaven because our sins are not paid for. This is why Jesus Christ’s birth was so spectacular, so unrivaled in history! “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life,” John 3:16. No other person, living or dead, could ever hope to make such a bold claim!

Today we give gifts in honor and remembrance that in the little town of Bethlehem 2000 years ago, God gave the greatest gift humanity would ever receive: His Son. Kings came to give Jesus gifts that night, understanding that the One who had been born was destined to become a King, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews?” Matthew 2:2. He would also be Savior of all mankind, “I will also give You as a light to the Gentiles (anyone not Jewish), that You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth,” Isaiah 49:6. When God gave His only Son, there was nothing else He could have possibly given to show how much He loves the world, and wants to save us. A gift costs the recipient nothing; likewise we don’t have to do anything to earn a gift. That is the very nature of a gift. Eternal life is such a gift: “The gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord,” Romans 6:23. Let us then accept such a gift; because a gift rejected is a gift that will never benefit us!

Below are links to similar Posts written by my mother and my lovely wife, Gillian.
My mother's is: Christmas in July.
Gillian's is: Christmas and the Messiah. God bless, and Merry Christmas!

3 comments:

  1. Another great post, Ian.

    I find it interesting that for everyone else's birthday, we give them presents. Why don't we give the Lord what he wants most of all on his birthday? Most of us celebrate Christmas as if it were our birthday instead.

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  2. Great message Ian... I Just dropped in to wish you and your family a Merry CHRISTmas. God bless, Lloyd

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  3. Hello Ian

    Happy New Year from Southern California. No snow here but a lot of rain storms and mud slides!

    I hope you and your family had a Wonderful Christmas Celebration.

    God Bless You, ~Ron

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