Do you ever find it astonishing that, of all the ways in which God could have reached us–of all the ways in which the Father could have saved humanity–He chose, in His infinite wisdom, to send a baby.
Not a man.
Not an obvious Messiah.
Not a solider or a king.
But an infant, helpless insomuch as any infant, susceptible to all of the harms of the world. I have always wondered why….
As Christmas draws near, I find myself asking, why God sent Jesus as a baby–small and defenseless–and not a man, ready to begin His ministry on earth?
From a theological perspective, I think there are many reasons why Christ came as an infant. It allowed His life to be more accurately and historically proven and documented.
He was better able to understand our own lives as humans–how fragile, how weak the flesh truly is. Although, Jesus could perhaps just as well have experienced temptation having only walked the earth as an adult man, but chose to also experience it as a 5 year-old and a 12 year-old.
For me, however, I like to think Jesus came to earth as a helpless babe, lying in a manger for a different reason.
A baby represents so much. For anyone who has children or has experienced the birth of a child, it is a miraculous occurrence. What was once nothingness is formed in a womb, wherein God breathes life. That life grows and a belly swells with the hope and promise of a new baby.
Babies represent life. Newness. Hope. The future. A second chance. A new beginning. Opportunity. Freshness. God’s promises. Tomorrow and far beyond.
What better way for the heavenly Father to give the gift of salvation and eternal life, but through a baby who represents a spiritually new life?
More than that, in His wisdom, God chose for the Savior of the world to be born into, what else, but a family. God knows that families can provide the support, encouragement, discipline, and love that we need to become whole and healthy.
God chose for Jesus, the Savior of the world, to be raised by a mother and father, surrounded by siblings and other family members. He did not have Jesus born be born an orphan, alone and forgotten. No, he was born into a family because families are important to God.
For those of us who do not have the perfect earthly family, there is God’s family instead, which provides every believer (even those with great earthly families) a spiritual family, where we can grow to become more like Christ.
I love that Jesus came as a baby and not in a cloud of smoke and fire. I love that my King chose to humble Himselfand pour Himself out in the form of an infant. I am thankful that Jesus was willing to walk in my shoes and experience the normal life we each lead, tempted by the flesh, but choosing to serve God.
I am thankful for the Babe, lying in the manger, who changed everything.
How about you? Why do you think Jesus came as a baby? What do you love about Christ? What are you thankful for this Christmas season?
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