Word of the Month

God Incarnate

December 1998

At Christmas we remember the birth of Jesus Christ in Bethlehem. It is nice that there is a day in our calendar that reminds us of it. The important thing is that in Jesus Christ, God took on flesh, and by His sacrifice at the cross, created the possibility to reconcile mankind, that has fallen into sin, with the Creator.

Many events preceded the birth of Jesus. History reports that Caesar Augustus of Rome had decreed a census for the purpose of taxation. That enterprise was not as easy to accomplish as it is nowadays; it was not done by filling in a questionnaire. At that time everyone had to travel to his own city to be registered there. Thus, on the decree of Caesar, whole tribes where on their way, which, due to the then traffic conditions were no doubt rather tedious and strenuous. These earthly happenings, however, came to pass in fulfilment of the divine plan. Mary was to give birth to the Son of God, and that was to happen in Bethlehem, as the prophets had announced centuries ago. Joseph was a descendant of that town; therefore he had to travel there with his pregnant wife - seemingly on the decree of Caesar, but actually however, so that the Scriptures should be fulfilled!

In our enlightened time, where everything is analysed and questioned, many people refuse to believe this fact. To them, the biblical report that Mary became pregnant through the Holy Spirit, sounds like a fairy tale out of the Orient. To the shepherds on the field the angels proclaimed: "For unto you is born this day a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." (cf. Luke 2:11). He who grasps this divine message in faith, will not question the supernatural incarnation of the Son of God either. Apostle John unmistakably qualified this event in his gospel: "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth." (John 1:14). We want to keep to this! And if, at Christmas time, we especially remember the birth of the Saviour, we do so in the sure knowledge that: Jesus Christ, God incarnate, who has overcome and is victor over hell and death, will fulfil His promise, return again and lead the faithful ones into eternal fellowship with the Heavenly Father!

Wishing you a peaceful Christmas!<br/> Yours<br/>

Richard Fehr