In the coming days, the Christmas story will be told in plays and pageants, pulpits and podcasts. Many of us could tell it from memory with a simple cue…
In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered… (Luke 2:1)
If you are like me, you can continue to recite much of the rest of the story from memory, or at least hit the high points.
We like Luke’s version because it appeals to our love of story-telling. In his account, we get to read the true and truly astonishing tale of shepherds and angels and those mysterious wise men from the east. It’s a wonderful story that tugs at our imaginations and focuses our minds on something other-worldly.
But it’s precisely the other-worldliness of this story that draws me to the Apostle John’s account, even though it is decidedly less colorful.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:1,14)
That’s it. The whole Christmas story boiled down to 46 words. To summarize an already succinct account:
- Jesus is fully God (and He always has been).
- Jesus is the Son of God (and He always has been).
- Jesus stepped into human flesh and added it to His deity, making Himself the one and only Godman.
- Jesus lived just like all men and women have ever lived only He never sinned.
- Jesus’ life and ministry (from manger to cross) tells a story of a God who is full of grace and truth (and we desperately need both).
In all of this, we see Jesus’ glory.
Amen and Merry Christmas!