For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. ~ John 3:16
Read this verse again, take a moment and consider the word GAVE:
Before Jesus could be born – where he left heaven and took on human form as a baby – this verse clarifies that he had to be given.
He was a gift – a holy sacrifice from his loving Father, given to a wretched, sinful world that deserved eternal darkness. But, instead of getting what we deserved, we were given the gift of eternal life in heaven if we believe in Him, lay down our lives and follow Him.
At this time of year, we are often asked, “What is the true meaning of Christmas?” and we are encouraged to think not about hollow, worldly gifts and extravagances, but instead about the birth of our Messiah in a lowly barn in a sleepy town named Bethlehem. We sing treasured Christmas carols that tell this precious tale; but so often, these Christmas carols leave out the rest of the story.
When God sent his Son as a baby to be born that night, He knew what was to come – he knew the rest of the story would include not only a birth accompanied by angels singing, but also a world-changing ministry, a sacrificial death on a rugged cross and a holy resurrection that would fulfill all God’s promises.
At this time of year, it is good to celebrate the birth of our Savior born as a baby in Bethlehem and to also celebrate the rest of this salvation story, written by the creator of life itself, our Heavenly Father.
In love and peace, Merry Christmas!!