THE CAST OF CHRISTMAS – The Prophets
MONDAY, November 29, 2021 – Read Genesis 3:14-15 - You may think it strange that God’s curse upon the serpent for the evil brought upon humanity would be included in the prophecies of Jesus, but within this passage we hear the first Gospel message – the protoevangelium! The enmity God put between the serpent and the woman, and between their offspring is not only referring to our natural dislike for snakes, but to the greater work of God’s salvation through Jesus Christ. The serpent represents Satan and the forces of evil at work in the world today and Jesus is the ultimate offspring of Eve. Though Satan struck Jesus’ heel at His crucifixion, Jesus crushed His head upon His resurrection. Through Jesus’ life, death and resurrection we have victory over sin and death. Now that’s Good News!
TUESDAY, November 30, 2021 – Isaiah 7:14 - Jesus was no ordinary child and his conception did not come about in the ordinary way. His mother Mary was a virgin. Even she acknowledged the miraculous nature of her pregnancy (see Luke 1:34). And Joseph, thinking that Mary had been unfaithful to her vows, considered divorcing her quietly until the angel convinced him otherwise (see Matthew 1:19-20). That God became flesh and made His dwelling among us is essential to our salvation. Jesus, fully God and fully human, has bridged the gap between sinful humanity and a Holy God. Through Him we have direct access to the Father. He is indeed Immanuel – God with us!
WEDNESDAY, December 1, 2021 – Isaiah 9:6 - Birth announcements have a way of brightening our day. Isaiah’s announcement of Jesus’ birth certainly did that for God’s people. Delivered 700 years early, Isaiah declared to Israel and to us that this baby would be the “Wonderful Counselor” for those who need guidance; the “Mighty God” for those who are weak; the “Everlasting Father” for those who are alone; and the “Prince of Peace” for those in need of peace – peace with God and peace with others. May the celebration of Jesus’ birth brighten your day!
THURSDAY, December 2, 2021 – Jeremiah 23:5-6 - Israel longed for a king like David. Through the prophets God declared that He would “raise up for David . . . a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land.” The wise men identified Jesus as King of the Jews and through His ministry of love, grace, healing and forgiveness people often referred to Him the “Son of David.” The title Christ and Messiah both mean “anointed one.” Jesus is the Son of David, the anointed King of the Jews whose kingdom is not of this world, and whose reign will never end. Rejoice in the news that Our Righteous Savior has been born – He truly is the Son of David!
FRIDAY, December 3, 2021 – Micah 5:2 - Big things sometimes come in small packages. That was certainly true of Bethlehem. Located six miles from the capital city of Jerusalem, Bethlehem was small and insignificant by comparison. But despite its size, it is known as the birthplace of Israel’s greatest king, David and of the King of Kings, Jesus! Take time this Christmas to notice the little things. A child’s laughter. The brilliance of lights shining in the darkness. The warmth of a fireplace. And as you do, remember that God’s greatest gift came as a baby in a manger in the little, out of the way town of Bethlehem. The Son of God, who “did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,” became small to save us.