Jesus' Birth Was an Epic Battle
“When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.” Matthew 2:16
Hello and merry Christmas friends! Isn’t this time of year peaceful? It’s something we all love about the Christmas season. To echo the words of the popular carol, “Silent night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright.” What you may not realize, however, is the birth of the baby Jesus was actually the turning point of an epic cosmic war that began in history past. This is the Gospel message and why the birth of our Savior is so important. We see this spiritual element most notably in the response of King Herod to the good news that God is with us. He tried to kill him. Crazy right?! In fact, his deception that he wanted to worship the Christ-child followed by his slaughter of children might remind you of two other events in the Bible. The first of which is Pharoah’s attempt at the same thing in the days of Moses’ birth. But the second is the deception of our greatest enemy in the beginning of time. When the serpent deceived our first parents, God said immediately that a Messiah would come through a woman who would crush our great enemy once and for all (see Genesis 3:15). Herod represents this enemy in the nativity story and was doing his bidding in the world by trying to snuff out God’s salvation before it began. Thankfully, God’s plans for his children cannot fail. Psalm 34:7 says, “The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him.” And that’s exactly what we see with the birth of Christ. Luke actually explains that a host or “army” of angels appeared to the shepherds who were attending their flocks in the fields. Both this story and the arrival of the magi have greater Scriptural significance than can be discussed here. Nonetheless, the point of this message is that Christmas tells us that God will protect you from harm because he has already won the war for your soul. This victory would be confirmed about three decades later as Christ overcame death itself and brought salvation to all who would believe in his name. Think about that this week while we await a celestial celebration of the arrival of our King!
What about the Christmas story most stands out to you?
Have you ever looked at the birth of Jesus like a battle?
What is one thing you can do to share the good news (Gospel) of God’s salvation with someone else this Christmas?