Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Jesus came to destroy the works of the enemy

I love the Christmas season. I know there is a lot of commercialism that takes place, but the entire world talks about Jesus Christ coming to this world in the form of a baby. Make no mistake about it, some talk about Him while arguing about who He really is, and when He actually was born, etc. But the fact remains, He is discussed all over the world.

For the Christian, we need to remember that Christmas is about us celebrating the fact that Jesus came into the world to destroy the works of the devil. That's "shouting' ground" isn't it?

You see the manger and the cross are two symbols that remind the enemy of his ultimate defeat. I am so thankful that Jesus was born to die. And not only did He die, but through the power of the Holy Spirit, He rose from the dead. He defeated death, hell and the grave! That is such good news this Christmas season, and what we can celebrate! May we never grow tired of reading the wonderful story of Christmas:

Matthew 1:18-25 This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. (19) Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. (20) But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. (21) She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." (22) All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: (23) "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"—which means, "God with us." (24) When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. (25) But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

During an all-night festival in Paris, five young people, apparently drunk, broke into the Orsay Museum and left a 4-inch gash in a priceless painting by Claude Monet. Culture Minister Christine Albanel said the painting could be restored, but she was deeply disturbed at the damage done by "a purely criminal act."

One news headline read: "Monet Masterpiece Marred." To mar is to injure or damage; to spoil, disfigure, or impair. It's an apt description of sin's effect on us. We know well the results of our own choices made in ignorance or defiance of God.

As we approach Christmas, it's good to remember why Jesus was born. The Son of God did not come to establish a nostalgic, family-oriented, commercially successful holiday. The angel told Joseph: "[Mary] will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins" (Matt. 1:21).

Christmas began with a present from God to His sin-damaged world: "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Rom. 6:23).

1 John 3:8 [But] he who commits sin [who practices evildoing] is of the devil [takes his character from the evil one], for the devil has sinned (violated the divine law) from the beginning. The reason the Son of God was made manifest (visible) was to undo (destroy, loosen, and dissolve) the works the devil [has done].

The masterpiece of God's human creation, marred by turning away from Him, can be restored when we give our hearts to Christ. Blessings!

Pastor Rusty


Karyn said...

Thanks for sharing this, it's really great. It's wonderful to read such encouraging words, especially in the lead up to Christmas. Karyn