It’s a scene with which we’re all familiar.
After all, for many of us, it’s standing somewhere in our homes throughout the month of December.
No, we’re not talking about the Christmas tree. It’s rather the small wood and plastic (or ceramic) diorama reminding us of the true Reason for the Season.
We speak, of course, about the Nativity scene: A small wooden stable, often with a thatched roof. Outside, to one side, a shepherd waits with sheep, and maybe a dog; to the other side, three men, each one wise, and all bowing in some fashion, approach while bearing gifts. Their camels crouch behind them. Above, an angel flutters. Inside the stable, Joseph, a shepherd’s crook in his hand, and Mary, kneeling, gaze down lovingly on the animal feed trough between them.
And inside the trough – the “manger” – lies the object of everyone’s attention: The Christ Child. Baby Jesus.
It’s the enduring image of Christmas, this little baby sent from Heaven to save us all. Emmanuel. God With Us.
But while our minds during this season may dwell on the helplessness of this Little One, we must not allow this image to distract us from an important truth of who this Baby actually is.
For in Isaiah 9, God, through the prophet for whom that book of the Bible is named, gives us great promises about this Son of His. And among other descriptors for Jesus, we are told He is called “Mighty God.”
Now dwell on that imagery for a while. Instead of the helpless babe, lying in a manger, picture instead a mighty warrior, a great King, above all Kings, a Lord above all Lords, before whom, one day, every knee will bow and every tongue confess His Lordship, to the glory of God.
Picture a towering Son of Man, at whose name all can be set free, and at whose name the dark spirits of Hell tremble and flee.
For just as each of us (no matter how cute we may at one time have been) were not born to remain an adorable, giggling, cooing bundle of helplessness, so too was Jesus sent to Earth with a purpose. And in His own words, He has told us what His purpose was: To seek and to save those who are lost, to proclaim freedom to the captives, to set the oppressed free and to help the blind to see.
So today, as you hear those words repeated every December, remember precisely what those Good Tidings of Great Joy actually mean:
In Jesus, we have a Savior, a Great Champion, who has never been defeated and can never be defeated, who fights for us, and through whom we have victory.
As Pastor Bryan shared, no matter where you are or what you’re going through, if you feel like you can never win, Jesus can break through – and He will. He has already won. And through Him, we, too, have the victory!
Who is He? He is Christ. The Lord. His name is Jesus, Emmanuel, our Mighty God, through whom God’s Grace Came.