The miracle is that God loves us enough to do it – that being in the form of God because He is God - God became the vulnerable flesh and blood Christ. Because He is God He continued to truly be God and at the same time became a human being - so that He could be the servant of all human beings. That is the miracle of Love we celebrate on Christmas and, hopefully, throughout the year.
Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God - how could it be robbery to be exactly what He was and is - truly God.
Christ Jesus took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men - in Jesus, God came among us as the vulnerable flesh and blood Christ to become the ultimate servant of every human being who has ever lived – whether we accept His Gift or not.
We think about Jesus giving His very life suffering and dying on that horrifying cross - but His servanthood - His total giving of self began long before that. How humiliating for God to be made in the likeness of men and, in that likeness taking upon Him the form of a servant! That is the ultimate giving of Himself in total service to us and the entirety of fallen humanity.
What a precious Example He gave us! As He said In His Sermon on the Mount, “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one title will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.”(MATTHEW 5:17-18) Jesus came to fulfill The Law God had given us to show us the way through these temporal years. Jesus came to be The Perfect Model of the godly life – to live the perfect human life – to show us the only way to live in conformity with God’s Law as the vulnerable flesh and blood Christ lived and fulfilled that Law.
When Jesus was born in that Bethlehem stable, He, like you and I, was on His way to death. He was capable of experiencing pain and fatigue and illness - those "thorn in the flesh" reminders of our human frailty and unavoidable appointment with death. He was capable of feeling the emotional pain of having friends betray Him and enemies attempt to kill Him. He knew the mental anguish of having those closest to him fail to understand what He was doing and fall short of what was to be expected of them. You name the things that ruin your day, your week, your year, your life the most and God as the vulnerable flesh and blood Christ experienced them all - in lowly service to us. Jesus shows the way we were created by God in the Image of God to live. Jesus is for us The Perfect Model of the godly life.
But The Law that shows us how God created us to live – The Law only Jesus was able to live to perfection – also shows us our human frailty – our human inability to live as God created us to live. The Law shows us that we need Jesus The Perfect Model of the godly life to also be the restorer of that relationship with God which God created for us and we and our sins destroyed – that we need Jesus to be The Perfect Sacrifice for our sins. We need God to love us so much – that in Christ - He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross as the only Perfect Sacrifice for our sins.
Jesus came not only to fulfill God's Law to perfection - but to fulfill the prophecies - the Promises - of God as well - and that took Him to the cross.
And being found in human form, Jesus humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. On that most horrible of all instruments of judicial death, the Perfect High Priest Jesus offered His Perfect Self as the Perfect Sacrifice for our Salvation and Redemption – now and eternally. The crucifixion was the climax - the final act - of a temporal human life lived entirely in service to us and given as The Perfect Sacrifice for our sins.
Christmas celebrates the miracle of God's Love for us – God entering the world He created as the vulnerable flesh and blood Christ to shed His Light on the way God created us to live these temporal years and to shine His Light on the only Path to our eternal Home.
Though no longer visible to our physical human eyes, He remains invisibly with us with each breath we take - never more than a prayer's distance from us. Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the Name that is above every name so that at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the Glory of God The Father - worshiping Him, following wherever He leads, and seeking to follow His Example in all we do. Let this mind be in you, which is yours in Christ Jesus.
And we anticipate that day in the future when He will visibly come again to take us to our eternal residence in His visible Presence.
THE PEACE OF GOD WHICH PASSES ALL HUMAN UNDERSTANDING KEEP YOUR HEARTS AND YOUR MINDS IN CHRIST JESUS - OUR CRUCIFIED AND RISEN LORD AND SAVIOUR AMEN.
Fourth Sunday of the Advent Season
December 24, 2017
Dr. Kurt Borows
Pastor, Resurrection Lutheran Church, Catawba Island, Port Clinton, Ohio