Sunday, December 14, 2008

Choose Your Gift Wisely

Isaiah 9: v. 6-7 NIV
6." For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the goverment will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7. Of the increase of his goverment and peace, there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Mighty God will accomplish this."

The realization that Jesus was sent to be a permanent solution for the dilemma of mankind was completely missed by the Pharisees and the people of Israel. They wanted political freedom and freedom from bondage, but were only willing to accept that freedom for a short time. They were short sighted and didn't see beyond the "now" of their lives and their nation.

Had they really given thought to the previous reign of kings, they'd have realized there can never be any long term peace or freedom with any earthly goverment or king. Once a ruler's reign ends, who's to say will take their place, leaving them once again in a vulnerable position.

They were blinded to the words in scripture, such as "there will be no end, forever and Mighty God." Isaiah spoke of a king that would rule forever. He would also be able to deliver them from their sins because he would be divine or holy, something only God could do.

Matthew 1: v. 18, 21 NIV
18. "This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary .... was found to be with child through the Holy Ghost." 21. "She will give birth to a son and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins."

You have two packages to choose from this Christmas. One is an earthly package wrapped with fancy paper, a huge bow and gives the most sparkle. It's usually the one we reach for first. When opened it may contain an instant but temporary solution or relief to your "now" situation.

The other is a heavenly package, but it isn't wrapped with fancy paper, ribbons and doesn't sparkle.

Luke 2: v. 7 NIV
"She wrapped him in clothes and placed him in a manager...."

This gift will be chosen with the heart and opened by faith. It was wrapped in love and when opened will reveal in light and glory a permanent and eternal solution for all mankind.

Luke 2: v. 30-32 NIV
30." For my eyes have seen your salvation," 31." which you have prepared...." 32." a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel."

Which gift will you choose?

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