The final lesson in our series, Cutting a Covenant will conclude on Friday, December 29. We’re going to take a pause to reflect on the birth of Jesus this Christmas with this special bible study from me to you!
It Was Not Just a Baby Born That Christmas Day
The gospels describe the birth, early childhood, and adult years of Jesus – Jesus, the child and man. However, we need to look at the epistles to get the fullness of Who exactly was born that day that we not simply see a baby, a son of man, but rather the Son of God.
[The Gospel] regarding His Son, Who as to the flesh (His human nature) was descended from David, And [as to His divine nature] according to the Spirit of holiness was openly designated the Son of God in power…
– Romans 1:3-4Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
Who, although being essentially one with God and in the form of God [possessing the fullness of the attributes which make God God], did not think this equality with God was a thing to be eagerly grasped or retained, But stripped Himself [of all privileges and rightful dignity], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being.
– Philippians 2:6-7Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
For it has pleased [the Father] that all the divine fullness (the sum total of the divine perfection, powers, and attributes) should dwell in Him permanently.
– Colossians 1:19Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
For in Him the whole fullness of Deity (the Godhead) continues to dwell in bodily form [giving complete expression of the divine nature].
– Colossians 2:9Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
…so that when Mary looked down at her baby boy she saw not just a child; she saw the face of God. He was God come to earth in a human form. That gave Him the right to be called the Son of Man Who would die for mankind’s sins and also feel their pain. But He was so much more. He possessed “the fullness of the attributes which make God God.” “The sum total of the divine perfection, powers, and attributes” dwelt in Him permanently.”(Colossians 1:19) He gave “complete expression of the divine nature.” To see Him only as “the baby Jesus” – special as that may be – is not title enough. He is God in the flesh; King of Kings and Lord of Lords.The kingdom of this earth shall become the kingdom of our God and of His Christ and He shall reign forever and ever. Hallelujah!
By now you’ve guessed that I have a special love for the Book of Hebrews for so many reasons (as a former Catholic, chapters 7-9 are a glorious wonder to me). It is to the first three verses of Hebrews chapter one that we will look to complete the full understanding of Who was born that day.
1 In many separate revelations [each of which set forth a portion of the Truth] and in different ways God spoke of old to [our] forefathers in and by the prophets,
2 [But] in the last of these days He has spoken to us in [the person of a] Son, Whom He appointed Heir and lawful Owner of all things, also by and through Whom He created the worlds and the reaches of space and the ages of time [He made, produced, built, operated, and arranged them in order].
3 He is the sole expression of the glory of God [the Light-being, the out-raying or radiance of the divine], When He had by offering Himself accomplished our cleansing of sins and riddance of guilt, He sat down at the right hand of the divine Majesty on high,
– Hebrews 1:1-3 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
In the Old Testament God spoke at different times through our forefathers, a variety of prophets, speaking in bits and pieces. All these Words were “given by inspiration of God” (2Timothy 3:16) and made the readers look forward to the coming of Jesus.
A New Prophet Like Moses
15 “The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your midst, from your brethren. Him you shall hear,
– Deuteronomy 18:15New King James Version (NKJV)
The Servant of the Lord
“42 “Behold! My Servant whom I uphold,
My Elect One in whom My soul delights!
I have put My Spirit upon Him;
He will bring forth justice to the Gentiles.”
– Isaiah 42:1New King James Version (NKJV)
The Good News of Salvation
“61 “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me,
Because the Lord has anointed Me
To preach good tidings to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives,
And the opening of the prison to those who are bound;”
– Isaiah 61:1New King James Version (NKJV)
But Jesus Himself came in “these last days”! One person telling one complete story with all the facts, nothing left out because:
… in Him the whole fullness of Deity (the Godhead) continues to dwell in bodily form [giving complete expression of the divine nature].”
– Colossians 2:9 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
“The whole fullness,” “giving complete expression of the divine nature” – here it was! No more bits and pieces like a jigsaw puzzle scattered across the centuries. Yes, they were all true but you had to work to put them together – and some of us are not very talented when it comes to jigsaw puzzles. But then Jesus came: One voice, at one time – the fullness of time – telling us all the facts clearly – with love in His heart and such a desire that we hear Him. There is nothing else we need to know – Jesus has told us everything. The Book is closed. The Word of God has spoken. His is the last voice we ever need to hear. We never need to listen to another…and we never should. The Prophets could only tell the people what they saw and heard – rather second hand. Jesus, as God Himself, spoke His messages first hand.
Hebrews, having established Jesus’ identity, proceeds to richer and more glorious things. Verse two lists His preeminence, His supremacy over and above all others.
“ [But] in the last of these days He has spoken to us in [the person of a Son, Whom He appointed Heir and lawful Owner of all things, also by and through Whom He created the worlds and the reaches of space and the ages of time [He made, produced, built, operated, and arranged them in order].”
-Hebrews 1:2 (AMPC)
Jesus is the “Heir of all things.” According to Jewish law, the firstborn Son inherits everything his father owns. Jesus’ Father is God. Jesus is God’s firstborn Son. Hence, everything that God owns, Jesus is heir to. Jesus “lawfully” owns everything.
“Ask of Me, and I will give You
The nations for Your inheritance,
And the ends of the earth for Your possession.”
– Psalm 2:8New King James Version (NKJV)
Jesus is the Creator of all things as it says in verse two. This Word is confirmed in Colossians 1:16.
“For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.”
– Colossians 1:16New King James Version (NKJV)
Creator. Complete owner. But that isn’t all. “He is the sole expression of the glory of God [the Light-being, the out-raying or radiance of the divine]” (Hebrews 1:3 AMPC).
Later in His life Jesus would say:
“9 Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.”
– John 14:9-10 New King James Version (NKJV)
While He was here, people saw His human appearance – in later life as a carpenter and preacher; in the beginning as a baby. But underneath that outer shell dwelled the Son of God and that small baby reflected God’s glory.
Jesus proclaimed Himself “the Light of the world” (John 8:12). He sheds His light into the dark corners of our hearts to cleanse us of sin and fear. That light shines within us and people are drawn to it. He is our peace when times are darkest.
Verse three in Hebrews continues“ He is the perfect imprint and very image of [God’s] nature, upholding and maintaining and guiding and propelling the universe by His mighty word of power.”(Hebrews 1:3 AMPC)
This speaks of His Godly Attributes. He is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent. Colossians 1:15 says that Jesus is “the image of the invisible God.” God may be invisible, but Jesus walked this earth and was seen by thousands of people until He ascended to the Father. (A word of caution: He now sits at the right hand of the Father and will not be physically seen until He returns again in glory. Any attempts to “imagine” Him will result in bringing up “another Jesus.” Only in the presence of the true Jesus is there fullness of joy).
Notice also, in verse three of Hebrews 1, how Jesus is the One Who holds the whole universe together. He is a God of order. A very dear friend of mine had an uncle who came to Christ simply because, as an astronomer and mathematician, he could find no logical reason for how the universe could continue to be held together. It could only be God. Having so magnificently made His case for the supremacy of Jesus in so many aspects, the author of Hebrews lists the one point so dear to us all “When He had by offering Himself accomplished our cleansing of sins and riddance of guilt,”
In the Old Testament the priests futilely ad infinitum ordered animal sacrifices for the people’s sins, even having to offer sacrifices for their own sins. It did no good. Then Jesus came: the unblemished sacrifice, the High Priest after the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews chapter 7), offered up Himself and, finally, it was enough.
“27 who does not need daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the people’s, for this He did once for all when He offered up Himself. 28 For the law appoints as high priests men who have weakness, but the word of the oath, which came after the law, appoints the Son who has been perfected forever.”
– Hebrews 7:27-28New King James Version (NKJV)
Finally, God was satisfied. Sin was atoned for. His heart for His people could now be reciprocated. And what did Jesus do when all His work on earth was done? Oh my, what an incredible verse is this next! It speaks so beautifully of “it is finished.” What did Jesus do when His work on earth was done and He had ascended into Heaven? He sat down!
“Hebrews 1:3 He sat down at the right hand of the divine Majesty on high,”
He had nothing else to do – He had brought mankind back to its intended state, sinners cleansed by the blood of the Lamb of God, the Son of Man and Son of God. It was finished, once and for all, for all eternity! He did it all and now He could sit down.
The Almighty King had come and redeemed man. We thought He was a simple baby that Christmas Day over 2000 years ago. Yet what He was instead was the Creator of the Universe, the Lord Most High, The fulfillment of every Scripture, God became man Who dwelt among us, Jesus, the Son of God!
Voices of Lee: Jesus, What a beautiful name it is
Bethlehem Morning by Silvie Paladino