Wednesday, August 6, 2014

No Ordinary Birth

Encouragement for your daily walk with God 

News of the birth of a baby in Bethlehem was not really noteworthy. It was ordinary; mothers had babies all the time. Furthermore, these parents were ordinary people, craftsmen from Nazareth. The child wasn’t born in a clinic, merely a humble environment, not so unusual in those days. 

But for some reason, the baby born to Joseph and Mary has captured the hearts of millions upon millions. Luke gives us a clue as to why. The birth of Jesus was no ordinary birth. It was of such majesty angels couldn’t keep the news to themselves, and neither could the shepherds who left their flocks at night and ran to worship Him. 

Why was this birth different from any other birth? God became one of us to rescue all of us! Finally, a faithful high priest who, in service to God, would make atonement for the sins of mankind. 

No wonder the excitement! The author of Hebrews got it right. He wrote that God became a human to die on our behalf in order to break the power of the Devil and death. He didn’t do that for angels, but for humans—you and me. Later Jesus would reveal His mission: “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die...” [John 11:25-26]. 

God, the creator of mankind, became a man to rescue mankind — to redeem it. That is extraordinary news. Angels and shepherds were excited about it, and so am I. 

Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could he deliver those who have lived all their lives as slaves to the fear of dying. We all know that Jesus came to help the descendants of Abraham, not to help the angels. Therefore, it was necessary for Jesus to be in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. He then could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people. Hebrews 2:14-17

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