Many stories hail the stable boy who becomes a master and marries the princess, rising from ashes to dine with kings. It works for poor boys and girls working hard in school to dream and for those climbing the corporate ladder to beat all odds. It says the sky is the limit, every dream is valid, dare to dream and no man is limited. It’s exactly the kind of story that make great motivational speaking and draw flock all over the place. Story of the unlikely employee become boss.
Sometimes you have stories of admirable bosses who relate well with employees. Bosses and rulers who are kind and humane who listen to their subjects. And we all think if only all leaders were like that. Not proud and selfish but down to earth and approachable. First story speaks of power being attainable even by the least of us and second of it being shared or at least bringing us closer.
But the story of Christmas is one of a master come down to be one with his subjects. Not a phoenix who rises from the ashes but a prince who leaves his throne to know and save his subjects. While his people could only dream of ever living with him he comes down to be one of them in their weakness and limitation. He doesn’t lose his identity or authority but that doesn’t bar him from experiencing life with them as a common man.
He’s born through the pain of labour like any of us though by a virgin. He goes to school and causes a scare to his parents as he schools his teachers. He’s no ordinary child, God is born as a man in him. But he also experiences pain, grief, hunger, love and loss like any of us. He feels pain when injured and suffers alongside his friends.
But what makes this a great story is that he not only becomes one of us as a friend but his humanity, suffering and death was for our sake. He became one of us to save us from our mortal weakness and make us one with him if only we receive and believe in him. He left his throne so that by faith in him we might one day reign with him. But not all received him.
John the apostle tells us:
11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
He was born like us so that those who receive him by faith will one day be born of him and be with him. He came down to us so that through him we might go up with him.
He was born in human weakness like common man so that we would be born in glory through his Spirit by faith in him. He showed us the way up isn’t by working really hard to climb the ladder. It was by him coming down to pick us up. The prince became a friend and more than a friend one who saves his own friends.
In Jesus we find the kind of friend we all desire. One who lays down his own life for us. But more than a friend we find a Saviour. The prince of peace come to dwell with man and save him from slavery to sin, this broken world and it’s harsh ruler the devil.
John continues saying:
13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command.
He came that first Christmas and died on the cross to save his people, those who believe in him from their sins, see Matthew 1:21. And he will come again to bring us all who believe into his heavenly home. If only we would listen to him and obey his command!
Christmas my friends is more than an end of year holiday. It’s more than rest, family and being kind to strangers, it’s about the Lord who became a friend that by faith in him we would be saved.
Saved from ourselves, from the circle of life every year with sin and corruption, saved from poor leadership, pain and death. Christmas speaks of a child king who became one of us so that by faith in him we might become one with him. He was born a son of man that we would become sons of God. Born to earth that we might be born in heaven through faith in him. This is my hope and joy this Christmas. What is yours?
Do you want to just go round the sun again facing the same challenges of your sin and this world, complaining and dying in desperation? You could try hope in your self drive and ambition but we know that is limited. You might wish things will become better next year but we’ve been there before. Or you could surrender yourself to this child who became the king of the world to obey him as your Lord and Saviour. To be saved from your sins and live the rest of your life with the hope of eternal life.
My prayer is you’ll choose the latter so that like us who believe you’ll live and face next year with the hope of eternal life. Let me know if you want to talk more about this friend and king and the hope he gives us who believe. To know him as your Lord and Saviour and live with the sure hope of eternal heavenly life with him. He was born on earth so that by believing in him you might be born in heaven.
Wishing you a merry Christmas and Happy New Year!