|Come, Lord Jesus, Come!|
This Advent season finds me weary and oh, so in need of a Savior! It has been a year of pouring out and I am empty and filled with longing...just the right position to be in to receive and welcome the coming Savior.
No one expected the Messiah would come as a baby. They were looking for a King. They expected a leader who would overthrow the rule of Rome and bring peace and prosperity. Yet, He came, not in power, not with an army, but quietly, unseen, hidden in the womb of a peasant girl named Mary.
Why did he do that—humble himself, come unseen?
After all, He was with the Father God at creation, “In the beginning!” He was “with God,” and He “was God.” (John 1:1) Jesus was the express image of God with all the power of creation in Himself. “By Him all things were created…in Him all things hold together... in Him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell” ( Col. 1:15-20). This One laid aside all the glory of heaven, all the power of deity, and descended to earth. He did not come in a shout of glory—though angels sang at his birth. He did not come to exert the power of a ruler—though God has put all things under His feet. No, this One, this Glorious One, came quietly to a peasant girl. He entered our world as an embryo, fragile, dependent, powerless. So imperceptible was his coming that an angel was sent to tell Mary that she had conceived the Son of God.
No one expected Messiah to be laid in a manger. All Israel had waited for him for centuries. Prophets proclaimed his coming, describing his greatness in ringing voices that echo still in the strains of Handel’s Messiah during Advent. Isaiah describes Messiah as Light coming to dispel darkness, a hot and purifying refiner’s fire, a Shepherd whose yoke is easy and who holds weak lambs to his chest. Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace! We do not imagine Isaiah holding a sonogram picture of Christ in the womb when he shouts, “Behold, your God!” There was no ultrasound technology to peer into Mary’s womb, yet there surely was a fragile embryo bearing God’s DNA!
Christ’s day of birth, his appearance to the world, was not without celebration. We know well the story of the angels filling the sky with singing and the message of the Savior’s birth. We love the pageantry of the arrival of the Kings from afar. No GPS guided them, but God provided a star.
Why did he do that—humble himself, come in obscurity and poverty?
No one expected the Messiah would die on a cross. They expected he would bring them freedom and hope and light and that he would trample their enemies, but they did not interpret the prophecies to mean freedom from sin! They did not understand that the light would be the glory of His presence inside us. They hoped he would bring dramatic change to their situation, but did not expect that hope to be achieved through death and resurrection. They expected Him to change the world—they did not know he wanted to transform us. They did not understand that at the end of his life on earth—as at the beginning—he would once more be quietly unseen, yet oh so alive!
Why did he do that—die on a cross?
“For God so loved the world, that he sent his only Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)
He came to the womb of Mary so that we might know that he sees and knows us and we are precious to him in all the most fragile and dependent moments of our lives—even before others see us or know us.
He was laid in a manger so that we would understand what is important and what is not, that we might escape the idolatry of material things, power, and influence and follow him in wholeness and humility.
He died on the cross so that we might be free of our sin! “He is the firstborn from among the dead” so that we might have life, restored to worship and adoration, and alive to enjoy him forever.
He is coming again and all the earth groans for that day! We wait for light and hope and peace and joy. Come, Lord Jesus Come!