The downtown square was aglow with twinkling Christmas lights and festive holiday decorations. As I passed by admiring their splendor, I couldn’t help but notice the tiny Nativity scene tucked quietly away in the far corner of the square. Amidst the magnificent evergreens and brilliant displays, I realized that this scene (although biblically distorted) represented a miraculous birth prophesied long ago. Seven hundred years before the birth of Christ, God through the prophet Micah, foretold of this glorious occasion. “But you Bethlehem... though you are small among the clans of Israel, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from old, from ancient times.” Micah 5:2 He was to be “Immanuel,” God with us. Jesus, who would “save his people from their sins.” Matt. 1:21-23. What we call Christmas is actually the fulfillment of God’s promise made years before.
As I left the scene on the square, amidst the sights and sounds of Christmas, thoughts of another wonderful promise of God flooded my mind. Awestruck, I pondered the promise of his coming return. Jesus said He was coming again! First for all believers... then finally in judgment! I Thess. 4:16-17 says “and the trump will sound... and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that we who are still alive and left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.”
Two promises. One fulfilled, one yet on the horizon. No longer was I looking at the magnificent trees, I was listening for that marvelous trump! No longer was I glancing at the wonderful lights, I was looking for our wondrous Lord! As you anxiously look forward to this Christmas day, remember that we have another glorious event to anticipate. Because he came to Bethlehem as promised, I’m fully confident he is coming again. Count on it... because “He who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23.
HOW CAN YOU THANK GOD FOR HIS GREAT PROMISE TO YOU?
Awesome God by Helen Baylor