“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Isaiah 9:6 (Written 700 years before Jesus’ birth)
*Written Christians 2016
This time of year is special, Christmas time! So many of us love to break out the annual Christmas movies and quote each line! “SANTAAAAAAAA!” Buddy the Elf screams in excitement, thinking Kris Kringle is in the mall. Most of us know this movie well!
In Christmas Vacation, a squirrel clings to the back of Clark’s jacket as his dad yells, “Squirrel!” This scene is hilarious! The entire family runs crazy throughout the house, relatives and all, trying to get the squirrel outside! “I’ll smash it with a hammer!” Clark says, and his mother-in-law nearly faints.
Margo, the annoying, self-centered neighbor from next door, rings the doorbell just in time. In time for what? For the door to be opened and the squirrel to jump right on her face! Ha! Clark then closes the door quickly and strolls away with a smile of contentment.
So many awesome movies! So many good times! The Christmas season is great!
It’s cozy! It’s fun! It’s extra friendly and mostly…giving. Why is this? I believe it’s because Christians are being more like themselves than any other time of the year. We house God’s Spirit in us, and God’s Spirit is a Spirit of giving. He gave us life, He gave us free will, and He gave us Jesus.
The first two, life and free will, most people can understand. But why Jesus? Why would our Creator give us the only human being to be spawned from His very own supernatural loin?
Because He loves us. The most famous verse in the Bible explains this love, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). God loved the world so much that He gave us Jesus? He didn’t have to do this. He could have simply let us face judgment for our sins and then dole out everything we deserve.
Because He wanted us to have eternal life. How can we have eternal life? Only by way of receiving Christ’s life! (See Colossians 3:4, John 10:10). We are not eternal, only God is. Eternal means no beginning and no end. This is why Jesus said, “Before Abraham was born, I am!” Abraham lived thousands of years before Jesus (see John 8:58). We are everlasting–not eternal. Everlasting means we have a beginning but no end. Why am I picking at words? Because in order to have the eternal life Jesus speaks of in John 3:16, we must have His life. That only happens by receiving His Spirit into our own.
Because He wanted to be sure we never go to hell. Let’s just put the cards on the table: hell is real. We can stick our heads in the sand all we like, but Jesus warned us about hell a lot. He spoke of hell more than He did heaven. Hell is a place of pain, torment, despair, unfathomable loneliness, weeping, darkness, fire, and gnashing of teeth. It is bad. The worst part about hell is the best part about heaven–it does not end. So, in order to not go to hell, we must be supernaturally reborn as a perfect spirit who is joined with God’s Spirit. Like your physical birth this only happens one time, but this birth occurs by grace through faith in Jesus’ forgiveness! (See Matthew 5:48, 13:42, 25:30, Luke 16:23-24, John 3:6-7, Ephesians 2:8-9).
Because He wanted to become one with us forever. God has always been in relationship. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit have been enjoying each other’s company for eternity! They want us to join them! We are spirits too! Jesus was born for this very purpose–to give us the opportunity to connect with God! He lived the life of perfection that we could never live, and then He died a sin-caused death that He did not deserve! Sin equals death! He did not sin! We did! We do! Once we believe in the event of Jesus’ death and resurrection as payment for our own sin, we instantly get crucified in the spiritual realm and receive a new, perfect spirit, which is joined with God forever! So Believe! Believe and receive the gift of Jesus! (See Genesis 1:26, Isaiah 53:5, Romans 6:6 7,23, John 1:12, 14:23, Galatians 2:20, Colossians 3:3, 1 Corinthians 6:17,19, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Ephesians 4:4).
A prayer for you: Father, today I want to thank you for sending Jesus to planet earth. What a gift! That baby boy in the manger was–and is–God in the flesh! Christ set such a wonderful example for us in regard to love, forgiveness, and our new identity. I’m so thankful. Right now, I lift up all who are reading this, directly to you. So many of these dear readers are not having a very good holiday season, they’re in pain and you know it. Dad, I ask that you wrap your strong, supernatural, loving arms around them–let them know you’re there! I also ask that you continue to work on the hearts of those who don’t yet believe. For some, it’s just too simple, they think they have to do more. Ease their minds as you reveal the truth of what you’ve done for them, and in them, through the gift of Jesus. I pray all of these things in Christ’s amazing name, amen.
This devotional is from 60 Days for Jesus, Volume 2. Get your copy here!