When did Christmas Begin?

Every year I am captivated by some new facet of the Christmas story. As if a splendid diamond was turned revealing a new shimmer, glint or sparkle of light never bent or reflected that way before.

This year I’m captivated with when the Christmas story truly began. Christmas is the time when we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the promised one, who came to save mankind from eternal separation from God resulting from their sin.

But Scripture reveals that the Christmas story started long before mankind ever existed.

Jesus existed before all things were created and was involved in creating all things (John 1).  Scripture states, “we were chosen before the foundations of the world” (Ephesians. 1:4, 1 Peter 1:20).   So, in a sense, Christmas began in eternity-past, in the mind of God.  And so I find myself wondering,

“Why would God create mankind when he knew they would be treasonous and make themselves his enemy by sin?”

If God the Father knew it would cost him his Son and the Son knew he would hang on a tree bearing the weight of sin and the full wrath of the Father, why would God extend the gift of eternal friendship to any of mankind?  Why would he not just refuse the idea of such a creation?  Isn’t that what we would do?

This is one of the great wonders of Christmas;  God knowingly, created mankind and offered them mercy.  

That mercy was Jesus, packaged as fully human; a man, who could die and take the judgment of the law mankind had broken. A man, who could live and fulfill perfectly all the law demanded.  That mercy was also packaged as fully God; that he might make payment eternally for all of mankind’s sins, and once and for all, conquer the effects of sin (suffering, guilt, death), affirming by the resurrection that mankind  could again be in a forever friendship with God.

Why? Why would God do this?

That certainly is something to wonder about this Christmas season.  It is the wonder of the ages, the mystery of the gospel, and it never ceases to bend and reflect its light anew bringing fresh amazement to all who view it.

My  greatest wonder this Christmas?  

…that the idea of the gospel was ever retained (much less acted upon) by the mind of our infinitely merciful God.  

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