Summary: The purpose of Christ’s coming is clearly laid out for us.

December 21, 2003 Hebrews 10:5-10

Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said:

“Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; 6 with burnt offerings and sin offerings you were not pleased. 7 Then I said, ‘Here I am—it is written about me in the scroll— I have come to do your will, O God.’”

8 First he said, “Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them” (although the law required them to be made). 9 Then he said, “Here I am, I have come to do your will.” He sets aside the first to establish the second. 10 And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

Out of all the places I would have thought the Armed Forces would find Saddam, it wasn’t in a little rat hole under the ground of an old run down house. I expected him to go out in a blaze of glory - a huge battle to the death. But when the troops got to him, he gave up and said, “I am Saddam Hussein, and I am willing to negotiate.” Ha, what a joke. Here he was, supposed to be the king of Iraq, leading this great insurgency to free Iraq from it’s captors, and he ends up in a hole in the ground! Why? Because he was afraid.

There’s actually a somewhat similar story to that found in the Bible. After the Israelites had requested a king, Samuel personally told Saul ahead of time that he was going to be it. So Samuel had a public showing, choosing one tribe, then the family, then finally narrowing it down to Saul. Finally Saul son of Kish was chosen. 1 Samuel 10 says, But when they looked for him, he was not to be found. So they inquired further of the LORD, “Has the man come here yet?” And the LORD said, “Yes, he has hidden himself among the baggage.” Saul - the future king - was hiding among some baggage! Why? It appears he wasn’t ready to be king or didn’t want to be king.

Even more strange than these findings - is how and where Christ came into the world. How? By taking on flesh - what a strange thing! And where do we find Him? Not in a palace or in the capital of Jerusalem - but in a manger outside of Bethlehem. What was he doing there? Why did he come into the world? That’s the question the writer to the Hebrews answers as we see today -

The Mission of the Manger

I. Is found in the choice of birth

You and I didn’t choose to be born where we were or to have the parents we did. We didn’t have that power. God says that HE chose where and when you would be born. But imagine if you could have. What would you have chosen? There would be several options - depending on what you wanted out of life. As to where we’d want to be born, I would think most of us would at least choose a hospital in America - with nice equipment and a heat lamp to be put on you. Then, you’d obviously want parents that were first of all faithful believers. Knowing that, then it would depend on what you wanted to do with your life. If you wanted to be smart, you’d probably pick a doctor or professional. If you wanted to be admired, you’d probably pick some good looking parents. You name it, you’d want someone who’d give you some “good genes.” If we wanted to be honest, most of us would probably pick the best possible path there was.

The writer to the Hebrews stated that Christ came into the world. Since He existed beforehand - He could have chosen anyone He wanted. He could have been born anywhere He wanted. Jesus could have chosen to be anyone’s son - Caesar’s, Herod’s, Ananias’, any priest’s, you name it. But Jesus chose to be born of a virgin - a lowly handmaiden who was engaged to a carpenter, not a priest - of David’s heritage. He chose to be born in a cattle stall, not a palace.

Why? It wasn’t because He was afraid of Herod. He wasn’t trying to hide from his duty either. His purpose was stated in Psalm 40 - I have come to do your will, O God. God had predicted in Micah and Isaiah -

“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.”

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