A Savior, Who is Christ the Lord

“In the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shown around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, ‘Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.’” (Luke 2:8-11)

Easter might seem an odd time to begin an article by quoting from the Christmas story. But, in reality, the two stories are marvelously connected. We cannot forget who it is that was born in Bethlehem on that date more than 2,000 years ago. Sure, He was the son of Mary; sure, Joseph was legally considered to be His father. But, in reality, that child was more. Much more. In reality, this Child was no less than the Son of God. More, this child claimed to be, and proved to be, God Himself. John tells us this in his Gospel:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God… And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:1-2, 14).

Later on in the same chapter John explains why Jesus came to earth in the form of a man. John the Baptist proclaimed, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).

You see, only as a human could Jesus become our sacrifice, paying the price we owe because of our sins. Galatians 4:4-5 explains, “But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”

Only as a human could Jesus do what all the animal sacrifices in the world could not. For many, many years the Jewish people had made countless sacrifices for their sin. But each day, each month, each year they had to repeat those sacrifices because “it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” (Hebrews 10:4). Only the blood of the spotless Lamb of God—God Himself!—could accomplish that.

But there’s another reason why Jesus came for a time as a human being. You see, only as a human could Jesus become our sympathetic high priest. “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” (Hebrews 4:15). In an even more gracious move, Scripture tells us, “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13). 

The human Jesus knows; the human Jesus cares; and, “for our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Corinthians 5:21).

That is the child who was born and laid in a manger wrapped in swaddling clothes so many years ago. That is the man who only a few years later was stripped of all His clothes and hung on the cross, shedding His blood to pay the full price, the full penalty for sins.

That is the God-man who is even now seated at the right hand of God in heaven, making intercession for us (Romans 8:34).

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