Who Is this Baby Jesus?
Who is this Baby Jesus?
Sweet baby Jesus! His birthday is coming and we are preparing to celebrate His birth and teach our children the reason for the season. But… who is this baby Jesus? We adore this sweet baby in the Christmas productions, on the Christmas cards and in our Nativity scenes. We give gifts because He was given gifts. We sing songs of praise and thanksgiving for His coming. We squeeze in a little of the commercialized aspects and rationalize that it is okay because when asked, “Who is this baby Jesus?” – we know how to reply. We do, but Christmas is about more than the birth of Jesus, it is about more because of who this baby Jesus is.
“And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Highest; for you will go before the face of the Lord to prepare His ways, to give knowledge of salvation to His people by the remission of their sins, through the tender mercy of our God, with which the Dayspring from on high has visited us; to give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.” Luke 1:76-79
This scripture is a foretelling of what was to come, a foretelling of God’s Word, and a praise to our Heavenly Father. When Elizabeth delivered John the Baptist her friends and family rejoiced because the Lord had shown great mercy to her. They came on the eighth day to circumcise and name her baby boy – assuming he would be named after his father, Zacharias. But Elizabeth said no, his name would be John. They were confused because there was no one in the family with that name. They turned to Zacharias and asked him about the baby’s name. Zacharias, who was deaf, scribbled on a writing tablet, “His name is John.” The people were surprised. Then it happened – something miraculous – something that was talked about across the land. Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, his tongue was loosed and he prophesied saying the words in the scripture above.
Here at the birth of John the Baptist we learn that John was to prepare the way for Jesus, to be a forerunner of the Messiah who was to come. He would prepare the people by teaching and spreading the word that they needed to repent of their sin. He would preach and give knowledge of their need for salvation. He would reveal that the gospel, the good news, is for all people. That we are all guilty of sin and deserve death. But that God, in His goodness, made a way for us to have a relationship with Him. He would send His Son, baby Jesus, to be the Christ, the Hope of the World.
The good news - “Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you – unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures” I Corinthians 15:1-4
Who is this baby Jesus?
He is the Dayspring, the promised Messiah, the Sunrise from on High, the Son of God who would rise like the sun to bring light to our dark world. He is our hope.
He is the Light – the Light of the world. “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” (John 8:12) A relationship with Him exposes our sin and gives us sight to see what matters, what truly matters. By inviting this Light into our life we will escape the ultimate darkness of death and spend eternity with Him in heaven. When the Light is alive in us, Jesus tells us, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”
He is our guide – our guide into the way of peace. Jesus’ command to “follow me” is repeated throughout the gospels - deny yourself and “follow me”. As we look around we see that we have become so full of ourselves – our way, our plans, our opinions, our desires, our needs, our feelings – all rule our lives. Yet, He is to be the One, the only One, who rules our life, our decisions, our plans, our desires. When we surrender ‘us’ to Him – then He leads us, guides us into a way of peace – a harmonious relationship with God. Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) Peace is not the absence of trouble. No, peace, real peace, is the presence of God. Jesus wants to lead us into the presence of our heavenly Father.
Who is this baby Jesus? He is the Messiah, the Light of the Word, the One who bore our shame and became our Hope of Salvation. The One who has given us sight, spared us from darkness and lives within us. He is the Way, the Truth and the Life, our guide and the Prince of Peace. This baby Jesus is our life, everything we have ever wanted, everything we will ever need. This Christmas season let’s celebrate more than His birth – let’s celebrate all that this baby came to offer us.