“The way, the truth and the life”
It astounds and shocks me that some of the Christian faith, some even with high title struggle with, and even deny the virgin birth because if there is one thing that perplexes me in the Gospel, the Virgin birth is not it and concur with Martin Luther when he stated:
“The miracle of Christ as Virgin born is a trifle for the mighty God. That God becomes a man is an even greater miracle and that Mary and Joseph find the angel’s messages to them credible is even more amazing.” Likewise for us: “The hardest point for us, is not to Believe he is a Virgin’s Son and God himself, but to believe that he came for us”.
That He came to bring forgiveness in Himself to thieves, murderers, drunks, prostitutes, drug addicts, for wall street bankers, soldiers, politicians, farmers, bankers and you: I do not find hard to believe. What I find hardest point to believe is that I’m in that list. Not hard to believe the sin side, but hard to believe the grace side.
But I do, as should you because it is does not matter who you are, what you have done or what you think of yourself, it is who He is, what He has done for us and what He thinks of us”.
Those in prison on death row, those working the streets and us here attending worship are united in sin and deserving righteous judgement, yet in turning our lives towards God in repentance and asking for and trusting in Christ, we are also united in His death for our Sins and united in eternal life in His resurrection.
In an Australian made movie about Football the coach gives a great Grand final three quarter time address where he talks of a mother being attached by a strong man looking to hurt her baby and asks his players to imagine the scene and see this lady, reach into that inner strength and find a way to protect her child no matter what the cost.
That intangible inner strength that comes through an unexpected situation where without time to access the situation and think through things, you respond and find a way you never thought possible. Those moments happen and we hear of them in soldiers, police officers, those fighting fires and in everyday people thrown into a situation abounding in peril.
That inner strength that comes when there is no time to think, and may not have come if there was time to think.
Time if we had available that may lead us to not looking for a way in, but a way out.
Truth is, though we would like to think we would do this or that, the truth is that given a situation of danger we will never know whether we would fight or flee as too when placed in a situation requiring our charity and service to others that although we hope we would, we may not as we way up if we can afford the money or the time, or even if they deserve it as we offer some excuse to flee.
Point is that like a recovering alcoholic can never be sure of total abstinence, nor can we be sure of anything that we will or won’t do or of what will and won’t happen.
So to with the Gospel if we look at what we have or haven’t done or of a sin with a hold on us or one we’ve beaten because in forgiveness and salvation before God the Father, only in the acceptance of and trust in Christ must we stand and accept the way He found for us.
To find that inner strength He gave us of faith, that like Joseph and Mary being told of the uncomparable, we too trusting in the Lord can dispel ridicule and judgements from self and others and have the inner strength of faith to give in to ourselves and listen to Him who gave Himself.
The human race was bound in sin and death, but God the Father found a way out for us by giving His own Son Jesus. Jesus who in the garden of Gethsemane asked His Father is there another way.
There was not then and there is not now for Jesus Christ the saviour is the only way, the truth and the life.
In that scene from that Aussie footy movie the coach talks of a mother being attached by a strong man looking to hurt her baby and asks them imagine the scene and see this lady, reach into that inner strength and find a way to protect her child no matter what the cost.
A fictitious speech designed to instil in them the minds of warriors that they “go to war” on the playing field.
God the Father seeing His child under attack reached into himself and found a way. God the Father seeing His child under attack. Seeing you and me, His children under the attack of sin reached in and gave himself, His only beloved Son that we not need the minds of warriors, but minds of those knowing peace.
God found a way out for us and that is why we celebrate Christmas.
There is a saying: Cheap grace. Cheap grace said by those who use it towards Christians who seem to take the grace they have received in Christ too lightly.
Maybe that is so. As so can be it in apposition when we see the greatness of our sins blurring and diminishing that grace.
God found a way for us and that is why we celebrate Christmas. We celebrate the birth of a small boy who would grow to be hung on a cross and killed so that when we see the mountain of wrongs we have done see a Father, our Father saving His child, saving you no matter what the cost.
We celebrate Christmas because when we are at the end of our tether with nothing left to give, we see what He gave us.
Jesus walked this earth on His way in compassion healing, helping and loving those in need that came before Him, as too are we on our way to those that the Lord sends before us.
Jesus on His way taught and lifted up the despondent in the truth that no sin is too great for forgiveness in Him.
We on our way are lifted up because we see a Father give His little boy to be lifted up on a cross.
God found a way to save His child, to save you and that way was not cheap and that is why we celebrate Christmas. We celebrate because we see that in Christ no sin is too great, no failure too huge and no amount of misgivings we have of self to vast before The Father for those who trust in Christ His Son, our Saviour.
We live by grace. A grace so costly that how could we, how dare we doubt it as we see God the Father looking at you and me in Sin and finding a way for us. His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ who walked like a lamb to the slaughter that we know the love of The Father and the way the truth and the life that is Jesus himself, and that is why we celebrate Christmas.
We celebrate today because we know the costly truth. That today because of Christ your sins are forgiven and in trust in Christ alone you are saved and given eternal life.
A gift to us at a cost so great that we not ask how could even we be forgiven, but a gift so great that we ask how could we be not?