Standing against big government and for the people!
From Jake and Katie Baker
Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Dear Family & Friends:
Let me begin by wishing you all a lustrous and joyful Christmas. In all the advertising hustle and seasonal bustle of Christmas, it is easy to get discouraged as the message of Christmas is lost somewhere between the electronic toys and AA batteries. But let’s ignore all that and forget for a moment about politics, the evil one dwelling at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, a $16 trillion deficit, and lost elections ... and let’s really think about another year has passed and it is the time of year when we celebrate Christmas.
For over 700 years following the prophecy of Isaiah, history held its breath looking for that moment when the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob would reveal his Redeemer. But as the centuries passed, many lost their expectancy and creation mused and dozed while expectancy turned to complacency and then to lethargy. Then, with the suddenness and explosion of lightening, all creation is awakened from its drowse and stirred to action as the trumpets of heaven herald the news that Providence has brought to confluence prophecy, history and present reality in the hamlet of Bethlehem. Suddenly, the prophecy of Isaiah dances with life off the pages of holy writ.
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.
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 forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this. Isaiah 9: 6-7
With what splendor the prophet greets the heavenly infant: Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. All of this for a baby – just a little baby - born into the chill of Bethlehem’s night. But this is no ordinary baby – this is to be the peace child. This is the child born to bear the wrath of sin, the penalty of eternal death for all mankind. This tiny baby nestled quietly to his mother in the stillness of the Bethlehem night was born — not for life and the dreams of happiness — but for sorrow and death that we might live in the light and have peace with the Father and be drawn heavenward. He was born to be that perfect sacrifice, who alone could bear the perfect wrath of the father for the sins of humanity.
Isaiah saw and believed and shared his vision which was confirmed by the apostle Luke.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. Luke 2: 10-11
The angels spoke of His majesty and sang of his glory. Isaiah called him the mighty God ... and yet here He is – in a manger – in the dank and murk of a cold dugout in the darkness both physically and spiritually of a small town in Israel. He was born under the occupation of Rome. Born in bondage, to go to bondage and death that we might escape bondage and find life.
This peace child would never know peace. He was born to be the perfect sacrifice. For lo, these many centuries the sacrifice of animals had continued as blood was shed for sin. But daily the sacrifices were repeated because the animals were an imperfect sacrifice unable to bear the perfect wrath of the Father toward sin.
But this baby ... this tender, cooing, bundle of life, looking deeply and trustingly into His mother’s eyes will look yet again into his mother’s eyes as he hangs from the cross. He, of paupers birth, shall bring an end to the enmity between God and man by becoming that perfect sacrifice, who alone can bear the perfect wrath of the Father toward sin. He alone can bear the eternal death. He alone shall bear the separation from the father in hell’s eternity. All of that ... in this wee babe whom shepherds praise, whose birth is marked by a great light in the sky as a multitude of heavenly hosts rejoice at His birth.
Who is this child born of such mean circumstance that the very hosts of heaven are compelled with the joy of eternity to announce with angelic splendor, His coming ... Who is this child?
He is Christmas. He is the reason wise men followed a star to greet him with great treasures, that according to some historians, were treasures that had been stored for centuries awaiting the birth of this prophesied child. He is The Savior – Yeshua, our Messiah.
So, this Christmas as you pass the manger scene, remember the rough wood ... for He will both start and end this Christmas journey being held by rough wood. Picture the love and trust of an innocent child peering into the loving eyes of His mother but picture also the mournful scene as He looks one last time into His mother’s eyes before death overtakes this innocent babe of Bethlehem. Finally, picture the eternal joy of heaven, the warmth of the love of the Father toward us, His children, and picture all of this in the loving nestle of a babe in a rude manger in Bethlehem.
Maybe this year when we see that joyous scene our hearts will change and we willbe different. Maybe this Christmas we can all look to have something new birthed in us. Maybe this year we can look deeply into the loving eyes of that beautiful baby in the manger and allow that love to melt away the coldness, the hardness, and the walls we’ve built there. Maybe this year the love and innocence of that Christmas night will so fill us, that everyone whose lives we even brush will be captivated by the love, peace and joy in our hearts that only the babe of Bethlehem can bring.
May you have a truly Merry Christmas – one filled to the overflowing with the eternal love of the Babe of Bethlehem.
May our Father bless each of you and your households abundantly this Christmas season!