JESUS…shining forth

“A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel. And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him.” Luke 2:32,33 And WE also marvel the things spoken about him and by Him. And without further ado, we surely must do… this Christmas Story.

I know it has been told, retold, analyzed, and theorized and I write on some aspect of it every single year.

And of all the stories of Christmases of old, time-honored traditions, or new customs, nothing will ever be as profound or as beautiful, holy, and humble as that splendid night that heaven came down and God’s glorious face shone in brilliance through a new-born babe.  

We’ll take a trip through various books of the Bible and let the scriptures recount this blessed event. 

The Promise: Isaiah 42:1-7: ” Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect (chosen), in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him; he shall bring forth judgment (justice) to the Gentiles.

He shall not cry, nor lift up his voice (speak loudly), nor cause his voice to be heard in the street.

A bruised reed he shall not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth.

He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment (justice) in the earth; and the isles (coast lands) shall wait for his law.

Thus saith God, the Lord that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath to the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein;

I the Lord have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from prison, and to them that sit in darkness out of the prison house.

The Proof: Isaiah 7:14: ” Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (God With Us).” 

Picking this passage up after the angel Gabriel had proclaimed John the Baptist’s forthcoming birth to Zacharias, the reference to the sixth month in this first verse is concerning that, basically John was Jesus’ natural cousins and they were six months between their conceptions.

The announcement: Luke 1:26-37:”And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God forth from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth.

To a virgin, espoused (engaged) to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary.

And the angel came in unto her, and said Hail, (REJOICE) that thou art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.

And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast (pondered) in her mind what manner of salutation (greeting) this should be.

And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found favor with God.

And behold thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.

He shall be great, and he shall be called the Son of the Highest (most High). and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:

And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

Then Mary said unto the angel, How can this be, seeing I know not a man (am a virgin)?

And the angel answered, and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing (one) which is born of thee shall be called the Son of God.

And behold, thy cousin (relative) Elisabeth hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. 

For with God nothing shall be impossible.”

The fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham, the lineage of King David, and the earthly father, who really needed to know.

Matthew 1:17-25:” So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David to the carrying away in to Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.

Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise (as follows): When his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph before they came together,(before marriage or any relations) she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

Then Joseph her husband, being a just (upright) man, and not willing to make her a publick example (accuse, humiliate and have her stoned)  was minded to put her away privately (thought of secretly ending it).

But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS (Saviour): for he shall save his people from their sins.

Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet saying, BEHOLD, A VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD, AND SHALL BRING FORTH A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME EMMANUEL, which being interpreted is, God With Us.

Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden (told) him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not (did NOT have relations with her) till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.”

The birth of the King to end all kings:  Luke 2:1-21:”And it came to pass in those days there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.

(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was Governor of Syria.)

And all went to be taxed(registered),every one into his own city.

And Joseph also went into Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, (because he was of the house of David)

To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

And so it was, that while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

And she brought forth  her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger (feed trough) because there was no room for them at the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

 And lo,the angel of the Lord came upon them (stood before them),and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid (terrified).

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to ALL people.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And SUDDENLY there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST, AND ON EARTH PEACE, GOOD WILL TOWARD MEN.

And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

And when they had seen it, they made know abroad (told EVERYONE) the saying which was told them concerning this child.

And all that heard it wondered (MARVELED) at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.

And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

And when eight days were accomplished (completed) for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel BEFORE he was conceived in the womb.”

Our God, our hope, our promise, our peace, life and light eternal: Isaiah 9:2-6: “The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, UPON THEM HATH THE LIGHT SHINED.

Thou hast multiplied the nations, and not increased the joy: they joy before thee according to the joy in harvest, and as men rejoice when they divide the spoil.

For thou hast broken the yoke of his burden, and the staff of his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor, as in the days of the Midian. For every battle of the warrior is as confused noise, and garments rolled in blood: but this shall be with burning and fuel of (for) fire. 

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called, Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”

May His beautiful light shine on you and yours and His peace be yours this Christmas and as His Kingdom, may His peace upon you be never-ending.

MERRY  CHRISTMAS!!!     For “Posts of Christmas past” Check out: “STAR”   “GOLDEN”   “Abiding in the field”   “Two Turtledoves”

 

Φλογιζω NBJ 2018

 

“STAR”

 

“When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshiped him: and when they opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, frankincense, and myrrh.”

That wondrous star that led the kings to the Messiah. Think how many times they were probably discouraged by those around them as they sought out the most ancient of signs from the most ancient of prophecies.

But they were being drawn by the divinely magnetic force of the universe, the same divine force that placed that heavenly light in the sky for all to see, but only these three understood the significance of it all, but the “pay off” for them, in the form of all the hopes, dreams, and diligence being rewarded as they were among the first allowed to worship the King.

How could they help but rejoice? And they rejoice they did, and that joy would have truly been beyond comprehension.  I am sure many go through that process of seeking, as Abram sought for a city whose builder and maker is God, many others sought out the path predestined and purposed deep inside their hearts long before birth, even placed there BEFORE the foundations of the world. The longing of their souls driving them to seek deeper and deeper into the knowledge and treasures of God as the world around breathes “delusional” and “brainwashed by religion.”

And as the “Christ” in Christmas grows harder to recognize in this world, even in churches with many now no longer holding “traditional” services, but these days were always honored for very good reason.  They are referred to as THE HOLIDAYS in reference to celebrating the HOLY DAYS. With all that goes on around us and all who try their best to discourage us that we are seeking pipe dreams and fairy tales, it is ever pressing to remember what the wise men sought.

I know it can be argued and argued as to the origins of the holiday season, but a couple of things remain true, the day was adopted as the celebration of the birth of Christ, the greatest event spanning time, universe, and all that is or ever will be.

When God overshadowed Mary with His glory, majesty, and everything that He is and placed in her the seed of Himself because humans had been tainted at the fall of Adam and even though we had been created in His image. The health, longevity, peace that God had intended they enjoy would now  through two people, at the badgering, beguiling voice of the serpent had now become tainted and polluted with sickness, sin, and death and the beautiful mercy and grace that should have been in us turned to wickedness and violence as the seed of the enemy was introduced into the human equation.

So on this beautiful, blessed night that heaven would kiss the earth and angels would proclaim the lullaby to end all lullabies mingled with humans HEARING the songs of heaven itself as they sang “GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST”, the breach was repaired by the same means by which it had been destroyed when the absolute Holy of Holiest came through a vessel of purity and would allow the spiritual birth of a new kind, first fruits of the Father and of the Son, and those to be of the Kingdom yet to come.

Secular shows with their ideal of “comedic” nods to the nativity that actually are blasphemous, songs written in churches long ago as praise and glory now have parodied lyrics and among the parties, gifts, and feasting of our present day, the shepherds who stood in awe, the  angels whose heavenly appearance and song would have melted even the hardest heart, the obedient but ever rewarded wise men, and the glorious star who shone with incredible splendor are being quickly forgotten and are no longer welcomed in our popular society.

So as Christmas approaches think about that star, think about what has been seeded inside of YOU as a believer, think about what YOU can bring to the King in adoration and worship to Him when He has opened YOUR treasures, (secret there, HE IS the one who has given you the gifts that you give back to the Kingdom) His Royal gold, pure, tried and true word of God. His Myrrh, purification for our souls and His dying that IN HIM we live. His frankincense in intercession for all the world and all those created by Him and for Him.

And that glorious star that burns ever so brightly STILL today if you will only choose to see it. His glory that still visits earth, His glory that will ONE day be revealed to all. “ARISE, shine; for thy light IS come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” ISAIAH 60:1

Let HIS light SHINE on you and through you this season and all year. Remember it is about LOVE, COMPASSION, MERCY, and CHARITY to our fellow-man, not necessarily fellow family members.

“But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more (brighter and brighter) unto the perfect day.” PROVERBS 4:18

As we KNOW HE IS that light that leads us as it led the others over two thousand years ago. And it will lead us into the ways of the Lord and it will lead us into that truly perfect day.

REVELATION 21:22-25: “And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb ARE the temple of it. And the city had NO NEED of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: FOR THE GLORY OF GOD DID LIGHTEN IT, and THE LAMB IS THE LIGHT THEREOF.

And the nations of them which are saved SHALL WALK IN THE LIGHT OF IT; and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: For there shall be NO NIGHT THERE.”

Don’t let the world steal your Christmas cheer with all the materialism that Christmas should cost a fortune, and if you can not afford the latest this or that, your family will be disappointed. Remember gifts are from the heart and the true price for Christmas was not paid for until Calvary and that was a gift none of us could have afforded to purchase.

Reports show that depression is at its height and the greatest numbers of suicides occur during the holidays, why? Because we have bought the lies of a Norman Rockwell family Christmas and lost sight of the TRUE meaning, we have made it a celebration for US and completely forgot about HIM. And I am not talking about people who have recently lost loved ones or been through some other horrific event, this is in reference to seasonal depression because we allow commercials and story books to convince us of the illusion of a holiday that nothing could ever measure up to.

No celebration in this world will ever live up to the true JOY and the true MEANING of REJOICING EXCEEDING, they were REJOICING in finding HIM! Shouldn’t we also? Once you have experienced the glory of the Lord in person and beheld the King in all HIS Majesty, and stood in His presence, (well, for the period that you are ABLE to stand) there WILL NEVER BE any event or reason to seek anything other than HIM.

So keep your head up, your ears deaf to the whispers of the merchants, your eyes turned away from all the “must have” gifts of the season and please, by all means FOLLOW THAT STAR!

May the Lord Bless you with a wonderful Christmas filled with His love, mercy, grace and that His peace will be with you and yours!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Related posts: Two turtledoves     Abiding in the fields     Hope        Golden      Mothers Love

My all time favorite Christmas song, it is not just the nativity story, it also details his RETURN!

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