Friday, December 25, 2009

baby Jesus

it's christmas eve (well it's technically christmas, but since i haven't gone to bed and woken up, it's still christmas eve to me). anyway, this is totally irrelevant.

i was at church tonight at the christmas eve service, and one of the songs speculated regarding why Jesus came to earth as a baby. i don't remember the precise words of the song, but the reasoning put forth was something resembling the thought that Jesus came as a baby so that perhaps we could relate to him better. while this is an interesting thought, it seems lacking to me. i sat in the pew for a while pondering why i didn't like the message of the song. and here's what i've come up with...

it's not so much about our needing to relate to helpless baby Jesus, but more about His need (or perhaps desire is a better word) to exhibit total and complete humility. i mean, if you're God, what is more humiliating than coming to a marred, depraved planet and putting yourself in the position of having two marred, depraved humans responsible for providing for your EVERY need? seriously, from the beginning mary and joseph didn't do such a hot job...a feeding trough for a bed? ;-) and then to come not only as a human, but a helpless human who pretty much eats, sleeps, cries, and poops.

so of course, in a way there is a message here for people. Jesus can relate to us because he has been where we are, even the helpless baby state.

but it's more than that - i think Jesus' paying for the seriousness of our depravity required His being totally humiliated. our sin nature is SO BAD that not only did Jesus have to die, he had to be willing to humble himself. philippians 2:8 states, "And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death - even death on a cross." SO Jesus' status as a human (especially a baby human) naturally entailed His humbling Himself. Jesus' humbling Himself seems to be of great importance in the way He lived and the way He died, and subsequently His ability to offer a sacrifice sufficient for human salvation.

so why BABY Jesus? because BABY Jesus was completely humble and humiliated. and SAVIOR Jesus was completely humble and humiliated. and because of that, i am forgiven.

what a merry christmas indeed! IMMANUEL, GOD WITH US is here, alive, once humiliated, now exalted, an acceptable substitution for my guilt.

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This blog is a testimony to the work that God is perpetually acting in my life. I am learning that when I think I've given enough of myself, I've barely begun. My prayer is that as God continues to grab hold of my life, not only will He become greater and I become less, but He will become ultimately supreme and I will vanish. This Holy Disappearance will be a lifelong journey in which, by the grace of God, I will become so wrapped up in Him that all of me will disappear and all of Him will SHINE