By Scott Tibbs, December 25, 2009
Today, we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. While many church services focus on the glorious birth of Christ with heavenly host singing, it is also important to recognize how much of a sacrifice it was for Jesus to come to earth to be our Redeemer. We often think of the crucifixion as Christ's main sacrifice, but his entire life was a sacrifice for us.
For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Many paintings of Jesus depict Him as a glorious, good looking man. But the prophesy of Him in Isaiah indicates that He was just the opposite. Born in a manger rather than a palace, Jesus humbled Himself to be with the lowly rather than the rich and powerful. Born as a baby, Jesus humbled Himself by being completely dependent on his mother and father for everything aspect of His life: food, shelter and clothing. Think that the Creator of the universe was completely helpless.
Jesus Christ is the creator of the universe. He is all-powerful and all-knowing. Yet he entered this world with no power whatsoever, in the body of a newborn baby. Jesus was completely dependent on Mary and Joseph for food, shelter and basic care. Like all newborns, Jesus could not walk or even crawl. Imagine, the Creator of the universe being carried around because He has no mobility! Jesus was willing to lower Himself not only to take on a frail human body, but to have the most vulnerable and frail body of all: a newborn child. How many of us, if we were omnipotent, would be willing to make that sacrifice for the people we created?
Most importantly, why did He do this? Jesus came to earth, endured the humiliation of helplessness, endured the humiliation of being of low social status, and endured the suffering of the cross for our sins. All of us have sinned against God, and no one has the ability to repay that debt and make ourselves right with Him. So God Himself comes to earth and suffers, and is eventually executed for the sins we committed against Him. What a merciful and loving God our Father is, to sacrifice Himself to free us from the bondage of sin and death.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I 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. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.