Summary: An invitation to consider the love of God.
Behold His Glory In The Incarnation
Woodlawn Baptist Church
November 26, 2006
If I’m counting correctly, after today we’ll have 28 shopping days left until Christmas. Whether we were ready or not, Thanksgiving came and went, leaving us just a few short weeks of holiday madness. The holidays can and should be a great time of celebration and rejoicing for us. From Halloween until the New Year, families are brought together, we are reminded of the many blessings we enjoy and we have the opportunity to reflect on the birth of Christ and God’s desire to reach out to us.
For many though the holiday season is not that. Knowing that there are only 28 days left before Christmas is cause for distress instead of delight. You intended to save up this year, but never got around to it, or never seemed to be able to, and now you’re looking at more credit card debt. Family get-togethers make you tense and anxious instead of happy and relaxed, and for some of you it is but another reminder of good years gone by with a loved one who is no longer here. The closer Christmas gets the more some wish it would just hurry up and be over with.
It doesn’t have to be so. In fact, our distress and discouragement and sometimes even depression are generally indications that we have turned away from what the season really ought to be about. Each year we have the opportunity to behold God’s glory as it was manifested to us in the incarnation of Christ, but if we’re not thinking along those lines then we’ll miss what God has for us. We shouldn’t miss it. This is a time when our hearts and minds ought to be pulled out of the mire of the earthy and into the glories of the heavens, and it is a time to remember where our hearts and minds ought to be year round.
As we spend a few moments in John 1:1-14 this morning our challenge, or God’s invitation to us is to behold His glory in Christ’s incarnation and respond to it as the Holy Spirit leads. If you are one who frets and frowns and wishes the season would hurry up and pass, I want to invite you to stop and consider God’s Word. You may have never trusted Jesus Christ as your Savior. Today God’s invitation is for you to be saved. Regardless of how you entered the room, God wants to meet with each of you as He shows off His glory as He demonstrated it at the time of Christ’s birth: the incarnation. Let’s read John 1:1-14.
Imagine with me a time before the Creation when there was only the Godhead. God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit, existing in a time when there was no time in a place we cannot comprehend. Jesus, the Word of God, speaks the Creation into existence. He says, “Let there be light,” and there was light. He divided the light and called the light day and the darkness night. In the five days afterward He speaks the word and a glorious place is brought into being: the earth with all its water and land. He says but a word and the mighty oak is planted by rivers of water. Perhaps He created the redwoods to remind us of His majesty. Without the slightest effort an elephant is brought into being, then a lion, a dog, a herd of wild buffalo charging the plains. Hundreds of sparrows feast in fields of bounty while the mighty eagle soars overhead.
John tells us that everything that was made was made by Christ, the Word who was and is God. Paul tells us in Colossians 1:16 that “by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers…” But Paul goes beyond telling us that Jesus created everything to say that “all things were created by him, and for him…”
Why did God create the earth? To make Him happy. Why did He create a bass, a shark or a stingray? To make Him happy. Why did He create a snail or rock or a rose? Because it made Him happy! All of Creation joined together in a wonderful chorus to sing forth the praises of the God who made them and sustains them. But man destroyed much of that. Adam and Eve determined to be their own gods…the lords of their own lives and cast all of humanity into sin, and from that day all the world walked in darkness. From that day the Creation would no longer sing in harmony. In fact, Scripture tells us it groans and travails in pain as it awaits the return of Christ. That’s why John’s words are so beautiful. Jesus, the Light of the world shined into the darkness that has been cast over all of creation.