God’s promise fulfilled
Published 7:29 am Saturday, December 29, 2018
Now that Christmas is over did we just observe 24 short hours of festivities or is it a year of celebration? The shepherds are visited by the angels in Bethlehem in the second chapter of Luke. In verse 15, the word known means to reveal or to understand. In verse 17 this word means to spread abroad or to witness to others.
The shepherds’ understanding of the Christ child changes their lives forever. They do not see that night as an event, but as a fulfillment of God’s promise to provide for mankind’s sin problem. In the Old Testament, the sheep die for the shepherd, now it is the shepherd who will die for the sheep. The excitement of that first Christmas compels them to share the Christmas story with everyone they meet.
The wise men are another example of Christmas lasting all year. Do you ever wonder what happens to the gifts the wise men bring to the Christ Child? They have a significance pertaining to the child’s identity. The gold is fit for a king, frankincense is for a priest’s use in worship and myrrh is for a Savior who will die.
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The gifts also provide for Mary and Joseph’s needs in the years to come. The night the wise men visit the Lord Jesus, Joseph is instructed to flee to Egypt in order to escape from Herod. The money from these gifts will need to last until Herod’s death which will be approximately four years. We may not know how much gold is given, but we do know it is extremely valuable. Frankincense is so expensive that only kings and the extremely wealthy can afford it. When the woman at the feast anoints Jesus’ body for His burial the week before His death, she uses myrrh which is also expensive. The value of the spices is three hundred pence, which is almost a year’s salary for the average man. Long before Joseph’s needs in Egypt the Lord has already set the solution in motion through the wise men.
Christmas Day enables a relationship to develop between God and those who believe and receive Jesus Christ. This relationship is not just for eternity, but for every day as we grow in Him. There are times we need Him for our physical needs, while at other times our emotional needs require His attention. When we are faced with the Devil’s temptations, oppression or lies, the Lord is there to meet our spiritual needs.
We do not have to wait for eternity to get to know the Lord. He is available to us today if we are available to Him. Our relationship will develop intimately when we see His faithfulness, love and compassion for us. Do not wait for eternity to be introduced to the Lord. Our journey can begin today as we get to know Him as Lord and Savior.
Steve Conwell can be reached at SteveConwell@outlook.com.