“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold I bring you up good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.”
“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10,11
The 25th day of December is generally excepted throughout the world as the anniversary of the birth of the baby Jesus and it has become a joyous season of celebration for many including, I believe, all of us. The decorated trees, the giving and receiving of gifts, the carols, the food and the general feeling of good will is to be welcomed and appreciated at any time of the year. If we could only get all true christians to study these verses and to understand their deep significance, it would really give a reason to rejoice.
Their words and testimonies are backed by the fulfillment of promises, types and prophecies given by the Lord throughout the preceding 4000 years.
There is a Divine reason, a Divine Plan of the Ages in connection with our Savior, His birth, His 3 1/2 years in ministry, His sacrificial death, His resurrection and His ascension.
God has given this Divine revelation to be a firm foundation for His peoples confidence in Him and in all the glorious things which He has promised He will yet accomplish through this great Savior.
Note the original promise of the Savior shortly after sin had wounded our first parents and brought them under Divine sentence.
Genesis 3:15 [And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.] The seed of the woman is the Christ, The Messiah. Bruise thy head, bring vital injury, crush out all evil in due time. 1 Corinithians 15:25,26 [For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.]
Consider the promise made to Abraham respecting the Messiah that he would be of his posterity Genesis 22:18 [And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.] And who are the seed of Abraham? They are the glorified Christ. Galatians 3:29 [And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.]
This same promise that the Messiah would be of their linage was repeated to Jacob in Genesis 28:14 [And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.]
The liunage and, the promises continued through David the king. 2 Samuel 7:16 [And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.]
Through Isaiah, the prophet, our Lords coming and His greatness are foretold. Isaiah 9:6,7 [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. 7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.]
As a further aid for our understanding the Lord has in His Word provided types and prophesies. We recall how Jesus was typified in Isaac, who was not only the heir of the promises made to Abraham, but who was also in figure put to death and received again from the dead.
Moses the deliverer and lawgiver was declared to be like unto the greater one to come after him, Our Lord Jesus.
If the Bible had been written by men to deceive the people we may be sure the deceivers would have been careful to make up some remarkable line of parentage for the coming Messiah – free from blights, scandal, and weaknesses; but this was not done. Instead, the weaknesses of the flesh amongst our Lords progenitors are fearlessly noted. Judah, the son of Jacob, and at the head of the tribe from which our Lords sprang was not above reproach, and his general character was faithfully portrayed; his son through whom our Lords’ lineage runs, was born of an unlawful union. Among our Lords’ ancestries were Rahab, the harlot of Jericho, a foreigner who became an Israelite Indeed: so was Ruth, the Moabitess and adopted Israelite. The line even through David, is comprised by coming through Bathsheba, the widow of Uriah, the Hittite. The New Testament writers are similarly candid and make no hesitation in recording the genealogy. All this is in full accord with the Scriptural presentation of the matter; namely, that our Lords virtue, His sinlessness, His separateness from sinners, was not through the flesh. not through His mother, but through His Father, God.
Hebrews 2:16,17 [For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. 17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.]
Our Lord Jesus stooped from his high position as the Logos, the Word, and became of the seed of Abraham. He took the human nature Hebrews 2:9 [But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.] Although born a Jew under the law, and redeeming those were under the law Jesus did more than this, in that His death as planned by the Father and accepted by Himself was a propitiation for the sins of the whole world. 1 John 2:2 [And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.]
Jesus died as a ransom price for Adam and his sins, and thus purchased from condemnation not only Adam but all of Adams children that were also involved through his transgression: Hebrews 7:25 [Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.]
The circumstances of our Lords’ birth and early experiences in comparative poverty as a working man, impress us with the thought that he is indeed able to sympathize with mankind in every station of life; having passed from the glory with the Father to the low condition of humanity and back again. He is surely able to appreciate and sympathize with all conditions and classes.
The message which our heavenly Father sent us through the angels at the time they announced the birth of Jesus; began, “Fear not.” – the angel knew well that through sin and degradation a fearful apprehension comes over the fallen race when they even think about being in the presence of spirit beings. Isaiah 29:13 [Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:]
Only the Christian having the eyes of understanding opened to appreciate the length and breath and height and depth of the love of God, can have that perfect love toward the heavenly Father, which is built upon an intimate knowledge of His Word, and which casteth out all fear.
The message continues, “I baring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.” How few believe this message and accept the Savior at His full worth. Some believe that He was a Savior merely for the Jews, or secondly, a Savior only for a special elect class; or thirdly, a Savior only for those who under present darkness, ignorance, prejudice, superstition and devilish influences, manifest a special love for righteousness!
But how broad is the statement – great joy for ALL people!
Our faith is not broader than this positive declaration of the scriptures, when we hold firmly that our God graciously has arranged that every member of our fallen race shall yet be blessed with a clear understanding of the great redemptive price paid by the Savior, and thus they have a share in the glorious opportunities thus to return, if they will, back to full harmony with God and to full blessings and everlasting life.