Archive for December 25th, 2021

Reflection on God Incarnate


Written by Mark Roberts, a contemporary author.

The prologue of John’s Gospel tells the essential story of Christmas but not in the usual manner. John doesn’t give us angels and shepherds or wise men and a star. We don’t even have a babe born in a stable and laid in a manger. Rather, John reveals the theological essence of Christmas. And what is this theological core? It begins with the Word of God, the living Logos who was with God in creation. This eternal, divine Word “became human” (v. 14). That’s a valid rendering of the original Greek, which states literally that the Word (logos) became flesh (sarx). The Word of God didn’t just look like a human being. He didn’t just appear among us in some mysterious, other-worldly form. Rather, he became one of us, flesh and all.

Here is the wonder of the Incarnation, the in-flesh-ment of the divine Word. For centuries, theologians have sought to explain this mystery, but their efforts only take us so far. We’ll never fully comprehend how an infinite God could take on finite flesh, how an all-powerful God could become a weak, vulnerable baby. Yet this truth is absolutely central, not only to Christmas but also to Christian theology and Christian living. We must beware of the tendency to deny the full humanity of Jesus, even as we also boldly affirm his full deity. In fact, one of the oldest heresies claimed that Jesus was divine but not really human. Though most of us wouldn’t agree with this theology, we may have never taken time to reflect upon the implications of the Incarnation for our faith and life as Christians. In the next few days, I want to explore some of these implications with you. We will keep Christmas well when we focus on the fact of the Incarnation, something we can affirm without ever plumbing its depths. In Jesus, God became human. In Jesus, the all-powerful Word became weak and vulnerable. In Jesus, God reached out to us in a costly, humble, and fully incarnational way. The more we keep this truth in mind, the more we will be able to honor Christmas in all that we think and do.

SCRIPTURE: John 1:14-18

MUSIC VIDEO: What Child is This

Performed by Andrea Bocelli and Mary J. Bilge

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