The Most Beautiful Paradox | The Christmas Story
Christmas doesn’t just celebrate the birth of a man; it celebrates the birth of Man. There is something profoundly human about Christmas because it celebrates the birth of humanity. It is not a rebirth, but a new birth, and it comes, not in the form of an arrogant conqueror on a triumph, but in a cold and crying baby lying in a manger.
We can’t say Christmas merely celebrates the birth of a good teacher - there have been many good teachers in history, like Socrates or Pythagoras, whose birthdays we neither celebrate nor care to know. Neither can we can’t say we’re celebrating the birth of a wise man - both Confucius and Solomon were wise, but we don’t regard their birthdays, either.
Instead, we perpetually celebrate the birth of a baby and retell the story of his birth because there is something different about Him than all others in history. Every child looks at the universe with wonder, for he has not yet grown old and lost his sense of amazement. But while every baby looks with astonishment at the universe, during Christmas, the universe looks back with astonishment at a baby.
This child - the fulcrum of humanity - is not known by astronomers, but He is known by the cosmos they study. The stars reverenced at His birth and announced His presence as they hailed Him in holy light.
All the celestial beings in the sky looked with anticipation at the Earth. The wail of a child reverberated a more cosmic and commanding cry across the galaxies than the smash of a supernova. The galactic orchestra played in harmony and forte as they arrived at this crescendo of history. But when they trained their attention to the nexus of God’s creation, they silenced, for they knew the sinful Earth had welcomed her doom. They listened to the muffled cries of the Earth who was in tears, not because the God who will one day bring about its Ragnarök was born (for the Earth will be resurrected and made anew), but because while the Earth welcomed Christ as best she could, the ones who were supposed to take care of her - man - would not welcome Jesus Christ at all.
The Saviour of the World is the man the world least expects, which is precisely why He’s the Saviour the world needs. This holiday is perhaps the most sovereign beacon of religious freedom in the entire world. It is an ancient and cherished tradition that refuses to submit to the ruthless oligarchy of progressivism. It announces Christ; proclaims Jesus Christ, and announces the supremacy of Christ across the modern world.
The prime paradox of Christmas is that it’s celebrated in every home even though Joseph, Mary, and Jesus were homeless. Christ didn’t announce His incarnation adorned in splendour and pomp; He arrived in poverty and public shame.
One of the season’s treasures is that friends and family navigate far distances to spend the holidays with their loved ones. But while we travel to see our family, Joseph and Mary travelled far away from their own. However, no one travelled farther than Christ, for His home was in Heaven, His Father and immediate family was in Heaven, and He forsook all of it to be born among sinners on Earth amid a Roman pandemonium.
We congregate with family on Christmas day and feel a sense of security and safety. On the other hand, the child Jesus Christ was running from a man who took innocent Bethlehem families away. Christmas is a day for men and women to relax and unwind; for Herod, it was the beginning of a merciless hunt for Christ.
We celebrate the incarnation of God and the birth of a Saviour on the 25th, but only because no one celebrated him when he first arrived. All the signs were there; all the prophecies were written on the scroll, but the people of God knew Christ not. No one bothered to know Christ’s name on that first Christmas - no one shall ever forget His name again.
Thus, a supreme lesson of the day is this: We can do everything Christ could not do because Christ did everything for us. All that He endured, He endured so we would not have to endure it ourselves. He was taken away from His Father so that we might be brought close to both of them. He was born for the first time in order that we might be born again. He became a servant that we might become Sons of God. He was not forgiven, that we might be forgiven forever. He was not spared the awful judgement and unchallenged punishment of His Father and thus, if we believe in His salvation by faith, we shall be spared from the judgement of God ourselves.
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