Monday, November 29, 2010

The Birthday of a King?

While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
~Luke 2:6-7

When you think of a king, what typically comes to mind? Do you envision a grand throne surrounded by people who pay homage to the one who sits upon it? Or long purple robes that dazzle with splendor? Perhaps you see a sparkling and golden crown.

The Bible describes and portrays Jesus as a king. When Pilate questioned Jesus as to whether He was the King of the Jews, Jesus responds that My kingdom is not of this world (John 18:33-36). The prophet Isaiah predicted that the government will rest on His shoulders and There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace (Isaiah 9:6,7). However, for a king, Jesus did not have much of a royal birth.

Instead of being born in a palace, Jesus began His earthly life laid in a manger, a feeding trough for animals. They could not even find enough room for the king in the inn. His first clothing was not purple or majestic but strips of cloth. The first visitors for the king were not important dignitaries or high court officials but simple and dirty shepherds. Such a birth was not fit for a king but more so resembled that of a lamb.

While Jesus is our king, it is also important to remember that He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (John 1:29). This king was born to die in the place of sinners who would trust in Him just as the sacrificial lamb was sacrificed to cover man’s sins in the Old Testament. Jesus stated that He came to give His life as a ransom for many (Mark 10:45). In fact, Jesus’ death occurred the exact hour the Passover Lamb was being sacrificed. His bones were not broken in the crucifixion like the Passover Lamb’s bones were not to be broken with their sacrifice (John 19:31-36; Exodus 12:46).

It is important that as was we celebrate Christ’s birth this Christmas that we do not forget the very purpose that this child was born. If it wasn’t for the purpose of Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection, we would not have a Christmas to celebrate. Let us not forget the cross in our celebration of the manger!

Mild He lays His glory by,
Born that we no more may die,
Born to raise us from the earth,
Born to give us second birth.

Love in Christ,
Pastor Lee

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