Special Features

The Mystery of Christmas

To us a child is born . . . and he will be called . . . Mighty God. Isaiah 9:6

IN WORD  

Think of how amazing that is. A son—a tiny little baby—will be called Everlasting Father. A child will be called Mighty God. And on the surface, that’s absurd. Titles of deity and eternal fatherhood are reserved for God Himself, not for babies.

But the absurdity of Isaiah’s prophecy came true a few centuries later when a child was born, grew up, and actually lived up to those expectations. Many people who encountered Him simply could not envision Him as an ordinary human, or even a human at all. Others couldn’t tolerate those who called Him divine. He was unclassifiable, as all once-in-a-lifetime phenomena are. Uniqueness precludes categories, and people have argued about Jesus’ identity ever since He visited us. But Isaiah had it right, years before Jesus came: A child would be called things that only God can be called. People who argue that Jesus isn’t God need to go back a few centuries to a Jewish prophet and take up their case with him. A human being would be given divine names, he said, and to this point in world history, Jesus is the only One who has ever truly qualified for them.

That’s what’s so amazing about Christmas. It isn’t just that a Spirit became man—lots of religions talk about incarnations of spiritual beings—but that the uncreated entered creation, the eternal entered the temporal, and the infinite entered finitude. That which was completely “other” to human thinking expressed Himself in what was familiar to us. It’s a case of two different realities merging right before our eyes, and it still stretches our vision.

IN DEED  

Christmas is a mystery. It doesn’t matter how many familiar carols we sing, gifts we give, or traditional dinners we eat. A long time ago, infinite deity and fragile flesh met, and it rocked our world. It still does, and that’s okay. Let it. That’s what Christmas should be all about.

Read: Isaiah 9:6-7

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