The Holiest of Nights
It was the night of nights that defines and divides history. All that came before was a precursor to that which would come that night. All that came after is the culmination of the great promise that God made to humankind. The night of Jesus’ birth is the holiest of nights.
Genesis 3:15 is an early reference to what was to come when it says, “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.” (KJV) This verse is part of the curses that God pronounced on Satan and Adam and Eve after their fall into sin. The seed of Eve would be passed through all of humankind as they would be born to a sinful nature. The seed that will ultimately crush Satan is Jesus Christ. It was, therefore, necessary for God to intercede with his Holy Spirit to produce the sinless Jesus through a virgin birth.[i]
This birthday defines history. Before that day we can see man striving to attain favor in God’s eyes despite their inherent sinful nature. Some godly men and women would seek righteousness through a salvation that was still a mystery (Romans 16:25). Some prophets would foretell a savior. God promised Abraham that he would be blessed, and all the people of the earth would be blessed through him. (Genesis 12:3) All of history points to that one day in time.
As time passed, the promises continued. Through Isaac, Jacob and David, the promised savior would come. The world waits. They wait for the night. They wait for the prophecy to be fulfilled. Scripture is handed down from generation to generation and they wait. It was an unimaginable proclamation that was repeated over and over from father to son, “therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). How could this be? How was it possible?
Bethlehem was the designated location of this astounding event. “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.” (Micah 5:2) And so it was fulfilled as prophesied. The angel announced the holy birth. The angels did not sing to the temple priests, nor to the leaders of the world. They did not sing to the rich or the influencers of the day. They manifested glory in the skies above those considered among the lowest of humanity, shepherds. Uneducated, dirty, rough, and poor. “And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone around about them…behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people…born this day a Savior which is Christ the lord.” (Luke 2:9,10,11)
God presents His Son as a tiny baby in a lowly stable among the poor. The greatest gift in history, the greatest gift of all time and eternity comes to earth in humility. How can our glorious God have such love for the unlovable? We are all sinners and undeserving of such a gift. Receive the gift with the humility which God gave it. The holiest of holy nights that defined eternity is upon us. Praise Him on your knees.
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