Summary: We've heard the military expression, "Search and destroy." Well, the answer to our last question, "WHY?" "Why was it necessary for Jesus to come?" is, "To save and destroy."
Jesus is the reason for the season- 4 Christmas questions: #4, “WHY?”
In the military you have heard the expression, “A Search and destroy mission.” Well, the reason why Christ came was to, “Save and destroy.”
We have come to our final question in our series, “Jesus is the reason for the season - 4 Christmas questions.” This Christmas Eve we close by asking, “WHY?” Why did Jesus come to earth?” The answer: “To save and destroy.”
The answer to WHY is really the culmination of the previous three questions.
WHERE did the idea originate took us back before the creation of the world to the very mind of the Triune God. We looked at the Covenant of Redemption between the Father and Son and the plan and purpose of God for our redemption. We saw that as believers in Christ we are an IMPORTANT part of God’s plan.
WHO, took us to examine the Son of God, His eternality and the love between the Father and the Son. As believers in Christ, we are LOVED, and saw how the Father loves us in the same way He loves the Son.
HOW, brought us to consider the Incarnation and Virgin birth of the God-Man, Jesus. In putting on human flesh, Christ became one of us, that we might become a child of God. We saw that we are UNDERSTOOD because Jesus was human and was tempted like us.
All these bring us to the actual event of that first Christmas and to ask, “WHY?” “Why did he come?” To save and destroy.
Let’s take a look at each of these missions, first, to save and then, to destroy.
Our first verse today is, Lk.19:10, Jesus tells us why he came.
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost.”
This is what the angel had told Joseph in a dream. In Mt.1:21 we read;
“She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
A Savior saves. To save someone means they are in danger and need to be rescued. What is the danger, and is it so great that the very Son of God had to come to earth to save us? The fact is, without this danger being present, Christmas would be pointless! This is exactly the trajectory the secular world is moving Christmas towards- being pointless. It wants to cut away the Gospel meaning and hide the danger, reducing it to a mere ‘Holiday’ of gift exchanging. The meaning is lost behind Santa and snowmen. The ‘silent night’ the world wants is silence to the danger that precipitated Christ’s birth.
Yes, the danger is very great. Yet countless are the number of people who are unaware that this danger looms before them. They are not scrooges, or bad people, though some may be. They are good neighbors and co-workers and family, and all are unaware of the danger. Some have heard about it, but choose to ignore it. They all go about life as routine as if it will go on and on. They don’t know that they are on the wrong path and lost.
It’s easy to get lost and not know it. I remember years ago when my son was a teen, we would go on a Father/son canoe trip out of a Christian camp called Northern Frontier in the Adirondack Mts. This one particular summer trip it was hot, in the 90’s hot. At one point, we had a long portage, I think it was about a mile. So we put on our backpacks and hoisted our canoe overhead and started to march. We we the last in the line. It wasn’t long before the strength in the shoulders began to ebb and the canoe slowly settled down until the seat bar rested across our shoulders. This of course, meant my head was inside the canoe so I could only see downward, maybe 3 feet in front of us. Well, on and on we trudged, sweat pouring down, muscles aching, the only comfort was knowing that ahead was another lake and easy paddling. But suddenly, I thought I heard someone shout my name. “Bob, Bob” it was someone calling me. We stopped and rolled the canoe off our shoulders. I looked ahead for our group, but they were not there. “Bob, Bob” I turned to see our leaders jogging towards us. “Bob, you missed the turn!” I had been on the wrong trail and lost but didn’t know it. I felt confident that soon everything would be well, but it wouldn’t have been, because I was lost. If it weren’t for our Leader coming back and looking for us, we’d still be walking! That’s the danger with being lost, you may not even know you are.