Special Features

Treasure in a Manger?

“This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Luke 2:12

IN WORD  

Christmas is one of the best times of the year to express devotion, and yet devotion is so much easier on other days. Why is that? Perhaps because habits are easier to perform on routine days, and Christmas day—the whole Christmas season—is anything but routine. It’s a celebration. Depending on your household, it may be a noisy celebration or a quiet one, a crowded one or a lonely one. But regardless of the noise level and the people around you, it is a special day. One of the most special of the year.

Why? What’s so special about an arbitrary winter’s day that may or may not be close on the calendar to the time of Jesus’ real birth? After all, it’s the event that we celebrate, not the day itself. But oh, what an event! It was a once-in-eternity occasion where God clothed Himself in our form and lived among us. Our ancestors saw Him first as a carpenter’s boy, then as a precocious teenager, then as a powerful teacher and gifted communicator. Only a few saw what billions would later accept: That this was no ordinary human. He was fully human, yes; but He was—and is—so much more. In an intimate setting in Bethlehem, God got intimately close to His fallen creation. Instead of turning His back on our fallenness, He embraced our need. Our lives have never been the same, nor will they ever be again. Thank God.

IN DEED  

Look at that baby in the crude manger. His mother’s blood has just been wiped from His face. She will one day have to wipe His blood from hers, but forget that for now. See Him in this humble scene, obscured by a dark night in an out-of-the-way town. You have pinned all your hopes on this fragile child. All of them. You have trusted Him with all of your fears and all of your treasures. You have made Him your life, and if He doesn’t come through—if He proves to be just a long-ago baby in a faraway land—you have no hope. But He always comes through. He has never disappointed us, and He never will. He is Jesus, Lord at His birth.

Read: Luke 2:8-12

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