|God Became Man - The Incarnate Christ|
Since before the foundation of the world, God knew that in the fullness of time His Son would be sent into the world. This truth was made known by angels and prophets.|
It was Gabriel who appeared to Mary in Nazareth of Galilee and announced the fearful, but glad news to the Lord's handmaiden. According to the angel's word, she was overshadowed by the Holy Spirit and thus was fulfilled the divine purpose of the ages. His name was to be called Jesus, for He would save His people from their sins.
Through conception in the womb of the blessed virgin, God the mighty Creator condescended to take upon Himself the form of man. God became man and Spirit united with flesh. The Son of God with divine prerogatives became Son of Man with complete haman characteristics. The person who inhabited eternity entered into time and history. Infinity became finite, yet remained infinite. Omnipotence became weak as a baby, yet remained almighty.
Omnipresence became centralized within a human being and at the same time filled the whole universe with His presence. Omniscience within Christ contained all knowledge while Jesus grew and increased in wisdom. Eternity without beginning or ending came to begin, yet had no ending because He filled eternity eternally.
Thus through a divine-human encounter, God became man and man became God. In the conception two whole and complete natures, very God and Perfect Man, became one person who was born of the virgin Mary.
At the time of His entrance into the world, the plan of God had matured to perfection, "Pax Roma" was the watch word of the Powerful. Greek culture and language dominated the intellectuals. The Promised Land was preoccupied with religion and Messianic expectations. Finally, the stars of heaven gave testimony and guidance to the wise men of the East.
By divine decree, the angelic hosts from the far corners of the universe were placed on notice to assemble in "ample theatre" above the ancient fields of Boaz. Shepherds bedded down to keep watch over their flocks by night. Joseph, not finding room in the inn, entered the grotto stable with Mary his espoused wife, which may have marked the birthplace of Boaz and David.
On that silent and holy night He was born. They wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and placed Him in a manger.
The angelic universe went wild with jubilation. Nor could they refrain from announcing it to members of the human race. "l bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger."
On the heels of the announcement came the roar of angelic acclaim, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men."
This lesson deals with the Incarnate Christ and how God became man and man became God. We are still attempting to answer at least partially the question, "Who is Jesus Christ?" But in quest for this answer we must turn to the Scriptures.
ASSIGNMENT: Isaiah 7:14; 9:6; Micah 5:2; Matthew 1:18; 2:23; Luke 1:26-56; 2:1-40; John 1:1-18; Romans 1:3; Galatians 4:4; I Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 1:7, 8; 2:14; I John 4:2.
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