3 So also, when we were children, we were in slavery under the basic principles of the world. 4 But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, 5 to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. 6 Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “”Abba”, Father.” 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.
yes, christmas is a reminder of the extreme humility with which the Lord engaged our world. subjecting Himself to humanness wasn’t JUST a means to sympathize with us more fully, though. (but that is kinda ridiculously awesome icing on the cake)
christmas is a celebration of the incarnation. and the incarnation is the sunrise of God’s great redemptive plan. the fall in the garden cursed mankind, so the redemptive plan couldn’t simply consist of sacrificing the divine Son. a man had to pay the price to satisfy the penalty of sin. enter the incarnation. fully divine, fully man. fully divine in order to forgive, judge, and save. fully man in order to pay the price and be tempted in every way that we are.
incredible. ridiculous. i’m so grateful that God is God and i’m not! that He didn’t change the penalty of sin or set aside any of His attributes to redeem us. rather, in His passionate pursuit of us, He engineered an amazing plan of reconciliation. and though He didn’t cancel the penalty of sin, He did trump the snot out of it!
it’s in understanding this great truth that we can echo the song of the angels and say, “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased.”
*note the peace of christmas is the peace among men with whom God is pleased, and without faith it is impossible to please God. you do the math. it’s no surprise that “christmas cheer” doesn’t bring lasting peace.