How Much Jesus?
This article appears in the December edition of Covenant Spotlight. It’s a great issue so check it out.
It seems the world is having more trouble than ever accepting the babe born in a manager. We are feeling the effects. His followers are stereotyped, marginalized, intimidated, prosecuted and even persecuted. We shouldn’t be surprised.
The tiny one whose parents could not even get a room in an inn or give a clean place for his birth scares the hell (yes I said “hell” pun intended) out of most. Maybe it’s because like the Magi, deep down, they recognize this child for all that He is.
They gave Him gold in recognition of his kingship, not just earthly but divine royalty. This little one possesses great power. He is ruler of the universe, a role hidden in a dingy manger and not fully realized until His final return, but ultimate ruler nonetheless.
They gave Him frankincense because they knew Him as priest, not just any priest but the Great High Priest who would advocate for lowly man with the Most High God. He would replace all the rituals and ceremony of religion with the reality of relationship.
They gave Him myrrh because they foresaw Him as murdered sacrifice for sin. They recognized this child in His most mysterious yet most marvelous role of all, the greatest gift ever given by a God whose capacity for love is beyond our meager understanding.
If we are doing a good job of following, we are painful reminders of Him to a world that doesn’t know how much it needs him.
So let us not be too self-righteous when we hear “Happy Holidays” or Christmas described as an over-commercialization of an ancient pagan feast. Unless we are prepared to receive Him as Emmanuel, and king and priest and bloody sacrifice for sin, we are no better than those who reject Him as babe in swaddling clothes. If we accept Him completely, we are glorious, if painful reminders, of who He is and that’s our mission.
Just how much Jesus are you prepared to accept?
Take Him all and be blessed and a blessing.