Tuesday, December 24, 2013

the joy of Messiah

Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion! When God restores the fortunes of his people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad. 

Psalm 53:6

David's cry encapsulates hundreds of years of Israel's longing for the Deliverer. It was the cry for salvation. And even as Israel waxed and waned in spiritual commitment, the constant hope of Israel was for Messiah to come. It was anticipated. And David knew that when such salvation would one day arrive great joy would be known for all.

And then in history God answered the longing for the Deliverer. He answered it by sending Jesus, born to humble Jewish parents. He sent the message with angelic announcement to shepherds. He sent Jesus in the midst of oppression and longing for hope. The Messiah came and that is what will be celebrated tomorrow on Christmas Day.

All that longing was fulfilled when a newborn's first breath revealed God's salvation had arrived. And there, surrounded by parents in an ox's feeding trough the Son of God would begin bringing joy to all. He was celebrated at the temple at His circumcision. He was worshiped by wise men and shepherds. He was also hated by kings and murdered by leaders who rejected His message. But He was vindicated by the resurrectin so that His death forever redeemed us from sin's hold over us. And in new life, this Christmas we celebrate Jesus, the salvation for Israel and all who believe and trust in Him!

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