The silent, dark night was suddenly interrupted by brilliant light and a loud angelic proclamation. The frightened shepherds were assured by the angel that his message was one of “good news that will cause great joy.” (Luke 2:10)
My friend, even if you’re going through a dark night right now, when God has seemed silent, everything can change in a moment of time..The breakthrough may not be as dramatic as the shepherds experienced, but the message will be the same: good news and great joy!
No one could have predicted that the first people to hear of Jesus’ birth outside of His parents would be a group of shepherds. Angels appeared to these men, saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace, good will towards men.” (Luke 2:14).
This was the announcement of the birth of the Saviour. When the angels left, they hastily travelled to Bethlehem to see the wonderful gift the Father had given to His people.
The shepherds were eager to see the Savior of the world, and we should be eager to see Him as well. This involves not only coming to Him in our conversions but also seeking His face each and every day of our lives.
…on those living in the land of the shadow of death, a light has dawned. Isaiah 9:2
For those of us who have encountered the risen Jesus, a light has dawned. We have crossed over from the dominion of darkness into the kingdom of light. Darkness is no longer where we dwell, we dwell in the light. This present world is full of sin and suffering, but they cannot diminish the light that dawned at Christ’s incarnation. He has already come, and with Him came light, hope, and redemption. We have an incredible hope and with this hope, an opportunity to help people to also encounter the light this Christmas season.
“God is love.” 1 John 4:9-11, “.This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
At Christmas, we understand that God loved us so much that He came to live with us in the person of Jesus. That love now inspires us to live as Jesus did in this world, loving God by loving each other. Love is the greatest gift of all! Let’s give it away freely.
“His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” One name wasn’t sufficient to describe this special Child. This baby is different. “Wonderful Counselor” indicates that Jesus will be a source of extraordinary wisdom —great news for those who need guidance. “Mighty God” indicates that Jesus will be divinely strong and powerful — amazing news for those who are weak. “Everlasting Father” indicates that Jesus will care for His people forever, as a father cares for his children — comforting news for those who are lonely and unappreciated. “Prince of Peace” indicates that Jesus will bring lasting peace — good news for all of us who lack peace with each other and with God. Jesus, how amazing You are!
“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given…” —Isaiah 9:6
Before Jesus was born, Isaiah prophesied of His birth. Isaiah lived 700 years before Christ. This prophecy was fulfilled in the most amazing way. This glorious King, the Messiah, came as a little child: to us a child is born. He who was for eternity the Son of God, was given to us as a little Baby in Bethlehem. As we worship Him this Christmas, may our celebrations be filled with joy and wonder at the fullness of what it means – our heavenly Father has given us His only begotten Son, and whoever believes in Him will have eternal life.
Father, thank You for not just sending, but giving Your Son to us. He is the most wonderful gift of all!
Throughout the Bible, the Lord Jesus was given many names. He was called the Light of the world, the Lamb of God, the Good Shepherd, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the Son of God, Christ, Jesus, the Promised One, the Bright and Morning Star and many more. Each of these names reflects a different facet of His character and helps us understand who He really is. Of all the names that were given to Him, though, none brings more comfort to my heart than Immanuel—God with us.
Prayer: Father in Heaven, thank You for the comfort that comes from knowing You became flesh lived among us. I find comfort in knowing that You are God with us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen
“Fear of the Lord” is to have a “healthy respect, honour and reverence” for who God is. Men and women of faith ought to “walk in the fear of God” and “serve the Lord with fear.” Wherever God appeared to men of God, the results were the same—an overwhelming sense of fear. When God spoke, Abram stretched himself upon the ground to listen. When Moses saw the Lord in the burning bush, he hid his face in fear to look upon God. Isaiah’s vision of God caused him to cry, “Woe is me! I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips.”
What does the Lord require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways, to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. Deuteronomy 10:12
In the ancient Olympic Games, a winning athlete was crowned with an olive wreath. To wear such a crown was a great honour. But this crown would wither. Paul wrote about a crown which would never fade- the crown of righteousness, God’s reward to those who would run the Christian race and finish well. (2 Timothy 4:8) As his life nears its end, Paul looks ahead with confidence and certainty. He had fought the good fight, finished the race and kept the faith. He reminds each one of us, that, this crown awaits not only him, but all those who trust, serve and live for Christ. As you and I run the race set before us, let’s take time to reflect on our running, realizing that only with the Lord will we be able to run the race to the very best of our ability, and only with the Lord will we be able to finish strong.
‘You, LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns into my darkness into light.’
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, some days it feels like my light is almost extinguished, but I know that You want to come alongside me and cause my light to burn bright again. Thank You for giving me hope in this hopeless situation. Light my path, Lord, for I do not know what to do. Amen