God’s incredible gift wrapped in history, prophecy, mystery
Published 12:01 am Saturday, December 22, 2007
One word is heard more than any other around Christmas time: the word “gift.” The wrapping of a gift heightens our anticipation. Did you ever get one of those gifts that was wrapped in a larger box? You unwrapped the present only to find another wrapped box inside, and another inside that one. Finally, you get to the gift.
Some gifts you simply can’t hide by the wrapping. I heard of a boy who expected a basketball for Christmas. His mother thought he needed something more educational so she got him a world globe. Under the tree, wrapped in paper the boy thought he was getting a basketball until Christmas when he tore off the wrapping paper.
Someone once wrapped a grandfather clock, but it chimed a few times and gave itself away. One father got a puppy for his kids and on Christmas morning he wrapped it in a box. When it was time to open gifts everyone knew what was in there, not only by the sound, but by the smell.
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The Bible says that God sent us a special Christmas gift: Jesus. Paul said it was an “indescribable” gift, too wonderful for words (2 Corinthians 9:15). How do you wrap an indescribable gift? What material do you use? Mary wrapped the baby Jesus in cloth. God wrapped Jesus in some very unique ways.
First, He wrapped him in prophecy. Hundreds of Old Testament prophecies pointed to the coming of Jesus, like this one from Isaiah 7:14: “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.” Centuries before the birth of Jesus, prophets were heralding His coming in remarkable detail.
Second, God wrapped his indescribable gift in history. Prophecy is always woven into history. Jesus was born at just the right time. Everything was ready for this event. Religion, culture, even politics prepared for the birth of Jesus at this time in history (Galations 4:4).
Finally, God wrapped this extraordinary gift in mystery. God became man in the form of a baby born in a stable in a small town in Israel. Jesus would grow into a man like no other—both human and divine all wrapped in one. He would teach world changing truths and give himself as a living sacrifice to save mankind from sin. We have difficulty getting our meager minds around that. Simple logic and human reasoning cannot adequately explain it. It’s truly a God thing—a mystery.
If you haven’t unwrapped for yourself God’s indescribable gift this season, consider doing so today. Receive God’s gift of salvation and enter into a reality which defies description, yet satisfies your deepest yearnings and seals your future destiny.
Del Loy is pastor of Crosspoint Church in Natchez.