VIDEO Creator, Redeemer, King

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

This prophecy given by Isaiah would be familiar to most Christians, especially during this season when all of Christianity celebrates the birth of the Messiah. Although this event is usually observed on December 25, the day many pagan religions celebrate the winter solstice, Jesus’ birth most likely took place sometime during the fall. Luke 2:8 indicates that the shepherds visited by the angels “were living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night,” which makes more sense in September than during the cold Judean winter.

But whatever time of year Jesus was born, the great miracle was actually His conception. That was the moment when the eternal “Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). The birth itself was normal in every human way, even though the parents went through a challenging series of events.

Christ Jesus is not only our Redeemer, He is our Creator.

We justifiably honor Mary and Joseph’s humility and obedience to the requirements given to them. The teenage Mary, after being told by the angel Gabriel she would bear the Son of God even though she “[did] not know a man,” simply said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word” (Luke 1:34, 38). An angel told Joseph during a vision that his espoused wife would be the virgin who would fulfill Isaiah’s prophecy to “conceive and bear a Son, and [call] His name Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). The kind and gentle Joseph, “being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord commanded him and took to him his wife, and did not know her till she had brought forth her firstborn Son. And he called His name Jesus” (Matthew 1:24-25).

Although the deity of the Second Person of the Godhead was woven through all of the previous biblical narrative, it was not as pronounced there as it is in the later books of Scripture. The emphasis changed with the angels’ announcements to Mary and Joseph. Those few words encapsulate history’s turning point—from the Old Testament to the New, from the millennia of preparation to the coming of the Messiah, from centuries of a focus on Israel to the last days looking for the return of the Lord in glory.

The Child Is Born

The same prophet who identifies the child specifically insists that “the virgin shall conceive and bear…Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). That title is translated “God with us” by the apostle Matthew (Matthew 1:23).

For the LORD has created a new thing in the earth—a woman shall encompass a man. (Jeremiah 31:22, emphasis added)

But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law. (Galatians 4:4)

If words mean anything, the child would be borne by a virgin—a “new thing in the earth”—and that child would be “God with us.” This term conveys all that could be communicated and understood about the coming Person. The apostle John later spelled it out clearly: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). The prophesied child “became 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).

The Son Is Given

When Isaiah utters the prophecy of the child, he identifies Him with a name that can only be understood as completely God. This child is to be called “Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

“Therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:35)

For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. (Colossians 2:9)

“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3)

The Son is described by the Father as His “beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). There can be no doubt that the inspired words of Scripture identify Him as the only Son begotten of the Father in heaven. Everything recorded about this Son demands we see Him as the only One who can be known, seen, and understood of the triune Godhead of eternity past, present, and future.

Christ’s incarnation is the central miracle of the Bible and the turning point of all history.

The Creator Enters His Creation

As they celebrate Jesus’ coming during the Christmas season, many Christians seem unaware that this child who was born, this Son who was given, has an even wider identity. I recently received a letter from one of our supporters who surprised me by saying “I urge you not to claim that Jesus is the Creator.” That is unusual, to say the least. Most of those who share their resources with the Institute for Creation Research are pretty much in agreement with our basic commitment that the Bible clearly portrays Jesus as the Creator, the Second Person of the Godhead, and the Redeemer and King. Let’s look at what Scripture has to say about it.

“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). With these powerful words, the history of the universe begins. God creates space, matter, and time. The shapeless and watery matrix was empty and dark. God’s Spirit “vibrates” over those waters, apparently beginning the processes that would set the universe in motion. The first recorded sound was when God said, “Let there be light” (Genesis 1:3). On this first day, the entire Trinity of God is active. Obviously, God the Spirit is there, and God the Father is certainly implied as the authority and source of the creative power. But Jesus Himself is also there. He is “the Word” who executes the creation activity.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made….He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. (John 1:1-3, 10)

The Word is the One who separates the waters and lifts up land from Earth’s primordial oceans. He is the One who makes the moon, sun, stars, and swirling galaxies in distant parts of the universe. The Word is the One who creates all things. The Word is none other than Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of God, the Savior and Redeemer of the world.

Paul wrote a letter to a struggling church in Colosse to help them understand the union of the Lord Jesus whom they had trusted for their redemption and the God of Israel whom they had understood to be “the Father” and the one God of eternity.

[The Father] has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son…in whom we have redemption….He is the image of the invisible God….For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:13-16)

The English phrase “all things” is used throughout these verses to emphasize that everything that exists has been brought into existence by the Son. The list of created things is exhaustive: heaven, Earth, visible and invisible things, and the rulers in and of the universe—thrones, dominions, principalities, powers. These grand sweeps of eternity are anchors for our faith and encouragement for our witness.

When the Lord told His apostles “I and My Father are one” (John 10:30), He was most certainly speaking of the equality Paul cites in Philippians 2:6: Christ “did not consider it robbery to be equal with God.” The word choice is absolute. Jesus the Creator is isos, the primary word for total equality both in the sense of quantity and quality, with no robbery of either amount or value. The Second Person of the Godhead has absolutely no necessity to “grasp” or “steal” or “overcome” any attribute that God possesses.

The Creator’s Greatest Gift

Much more could be said of the Bible’s open insistence that Jesus is one with the Father and the One by and through whom all things were brought into existence. But perhaps a short passage from Psalm 33 is enough to “seal the deal.”

By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth. He gathers the waters of the sea together as a heap; He lays up the deep in storehouses. Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him. For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast. (Psalm 33:6-9, emphasis added)

All of Christianity celebrates the child born and the Son given to us during this season. We should also celebrate the Creator who entered His own creation, laid down His life on the awful Roman cross, and paid our sin penalty as He cried out, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46). He completed our redemption with the victory cry “It is finished!” (John 19:30) so we may be given eternal life with Him. He was buried in a newly hewn gravesite for three days and three nights as the Scriptures foretold, and then rose from the grave early Sunday morning that we might have assurance that His redemptive work was sufficient and satisfactory for “the sins of the whole world” (Acts 17:311 John 2:22 Corinthians 5:21).

As we give gifts to those we love, we should rejoice in the greatest Gift of all—Jesus Christ.

As we give gifts to those we love, we should rejoice in the greatest Gift of all—Jesus Christ.

* Dr. Morris is Chief Executive Officer of the Institute for Creation Research. He holds four earned degrees, including a D.Min. from Luther Rice Seminary and an MBA from Pepperdine University.

Cite this article: Henry M. Morris III, D.Min. 2018. Creator, Redeemer, KingActs & Facts. 47 (12).

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Birth of Jesus the Bible Story

This is a summary of the Biblical account of the birth of Jesus. You can read more in-depth Bible verses from the Scripture below and use the articles and videos to understand the meaning of this world-changing event in the Bible. Almost 2,000 years ago a young woman from the town of Nazareth named Mary was visited by an angel named Gabriel. Gabriel told the Jewish woman that she would have a son named Jesus and that he would be the Son of God. At this time, Mary was engaged to her soon-to-be husband Joseph. When told Joseph he was hurt and confused because he did not believe Mary. The angel Gabriel visited Joseph and told him that Mary would be pregnant from the Lord and that she would have a son named Jesus who would save the people from their sins.

Mary and Joseph had to travel to Bethlehem because of an order from the Roman emperor that a census, or record, of all people, be taken in their hometown. After traveling pregnant on a donkey for several days, Mary and Joseph arrived in Bethlehem and were told that there were no places to stay. The inns were full. Seeing that Mary was due at any moment, an owner of an inn told Joseph that they could stay in his stable.

Mary and Joseph settled down on the hay in a stable with animals sleeping. Mary went into labor and Jesus was born in the stable. The only place for the sleeping baby to rest was most likely in the animals trough, known as the manger.

During this time, an angel appeared to shepherds who were watching their flocks in the fields near Bethlehem. The angel told them the good news of the birth of the Savior and Messiah, Jesus Christ. The shepherds immediately went to find baby Jesus, which the angels told them they would find sleeping in the manger.

After some time, three wise men, also known as magi, saw the brilliant star in that sky that rested over where Jesus was born. The three wise men traveled from a far eastern country to find the new king. During the wise mens’ trip, Herod the king of Judah met with the wise men and told them to come back and let him know where the baby king was so that he could go worship him as well. The wise men continued to Bethlehem and found Jesus right where the star pointed. They knelt and worshipped the Savior and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. They then traveled back home a different way knowing that King Herod was not intending to worship Jesus but that he planned to kill the baby.

Today we celebrate the birth of Jesus and the coming of our Savior at Christmas time. Read the full Scripture passages for the accounts of Jesus’ birth in Bible books of Luke and Matthew below:


 

Luke 2:1-20

1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. 8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” 15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” 16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Matthew 1

1 This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham:2 Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, 3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar, Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, 4 Ram the father of Amminadab, Amminadab the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, 5Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, 6 and Jesse the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife, 7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asa, 8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram, Jehoram the father of Uzziah, 9 Uzziah the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, 10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amon, Amon the father of Josiah, 11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon. 12 After the exile to Babylon: Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, 13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud, Abihud the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, 14 Azor the father of Zadok, Zadok the father of Akim, Akim the father of Elihud, 15 Elihud the father of Eleazar, Eleazar the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob, 16 and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, and Mary was the mother of Jesus who is called the Messiah. 17 Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Messiah. 18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about : His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. 20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”). 24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

Matthew 2:1-11

1 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem 2 and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” 3When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. 4 When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. 5 “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written: 6 “ ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.’ ” 7 Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. 8 He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.” 9 After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.

The Celebration of Christmas

Luke 2:1-20

How would you explain Christmas to someone unfamiliar with it? Most people define the holiday according to how they celebrate it. But Christmas is far more than trees, lights, gifts, food, and parties. It’s one of the three most important events in human history. God’s plan for mankind’s salvation began with the birth of Jesus Christ. Without that, there would have been no crucifixion, no resurrection, and no hope for humanity.

Once we understand the true significance of Christmas, our attitude about the holiday will change. Instead of focusing on all the externals and becoming exhausted from preparations and activities, we’ll understand that it’s all about Jesus, who came to offer us forgiveness of sins and the hope of eternal life.

I’m not advocating that we drop all our traditions but that we become intentional about keeping Jesus as the central focus of our celebrations. Here are a few suggestions:

• Open a Bible to chapter 2 of Luke. Then place it beside the gifts under the tree as a reminder to read Jesus’ birth story on Christmas morning.
• As you open presents, remember that everything you have is from God, and His greatest gift to you is His Son. 
• Take a few moments to recall how Christ saved you. Share your testimony, and then thank and praise Him for your salvation.

It’s good to evaluate traditions occasionally to determine whether they are helping or hindering your focus on Christ. Don’t be afraid to simplify if Jesus is being obscured by all the activities.

Go With God’s Standards

“Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.” (Jeremiah 9:23-24) 

It is remarkable how different are our human standards of value from those of God. But what should be the criteria by which men recognize hearts of lovingkindness, attitudes of justice, and characters of righteousness? These are the attributes of our Creator and Savior, and it is our achievements in these areas that determine our real standing, in the scales of eternity, before Him. Human wisdom, might, and riches easily generate pride, and pride is “the condemnation of the devil” (1 Timothy 3:6).

Thus the Scripture has to remind us “that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: . . . That no flesh should glory in his presence” (1 Corinthians 1:26, 29). We should, indeed, desire wisdom, might, and riches, but not as measured by the world. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom” (Proverbs 9:10). “As poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things” (2 Corinthians 6:10). “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Let lovingkindness become the standard of true wisdom; justice, the measure of real power; and righteousness, our criterion of riches. All are found fully only in Jesus Christ.

If we must “glory” in something, let it be the cross. “But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world” (Galatians 6:14). HMM

God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes

Revelation 7

Revelation 7:1-3

No leaf shall stir, nor ripple rise, until the redeemed are sealed and saved. The agencies of destruction shall lie down like lions in their dens till the elect are secure, and then they will leap forth to destroy the ungodly.

Revelation 7:4

The Lord knows his own, their number is not left to chance. Jesus will see of the travail of his soul. The number mentioned represents the Jewish church, and is used to express greatness, definiteness, and completeness.

Revelation 7:5-8

Last, but not least, for the smallest tribe is as favoured as royal Judah, or fruitful Manasseh.

Revelation 7:9, 10

The Lord has a chosen people among Gentiles as well as Jews, and these waving the palm of victory and wearing the robe of purity shall chant the song of sovereign grace.

Revelation 7:11, 12

They use seven words of honour, for they render perfect praise both to the Lord God and to the Lamb. There are in heaven no deniers of the Deity of the Lord Jesus.

Revelation 7:14-17

What poetry is here, and yet all is true! It makes one weep for joy to read the passage; but what bliss it must actually be to enjoy such blessings! Shall we all be among that favoured throng? Are we quite sure?

 

Hunger and thirst are felt no more,

Nor suns with scorching ray;

God is their sun, whose cheering beams

Diffuse eternal day.

 

The Lamb which dwells amidst the throne

Shall o’er them still preside;

Feed them with nourishment divine,

And all their footsteps guide.

 

‘Mong pastures green he’ll lead his flock,

Where living streams appear;

And God the Lord from every eye

Shall wipe off ev’ry tear.

 

Of course , Christmas Is Real

Great is the mystery… God was manifest in the flesh. (1 Timothy 3:16)

The birth of Christ was a divine declaration, an eternal statement to a race of fallen men and women.

The Advent of Christ clearly established:

First, that God is real. The heavens were opened and another world than this came into view.

Second, that human life is essentially spiritual. With the emergence into human flesh of the Eternal Word of the Father, the fact of man’s divine origin is confirmed.

Third, that God indeed had spoken by the prophets. The coming of the Messiah-Savior into the world confirmed the veracity of the Old Testament Scripture.

Fourth, that man is lost but not abandoned. Had men not been lost no Savior would have been required. Had they been abandoned no Savior would have come.

Finally, that this world is not the end. We are made for two worlds and as surely as we now inhabit the one we shall also inhabit the other!

 

Precious Things

“And of Joseph he said, Blessed of the Lord be his land, for the precious things of heaven, for the dew, and for the deep that coucheth beneath.” Deut. 33:13

We may be rich in such things as Joseph obtained, and we may have them in a higher sense. Oh, for “the precious things of heaven”! Power with God, and the manifestation of power from God, are most precious. We would enjoy the peace of God, the joy of the Lord, the glory of our God. The benediction of the three divine Persons in love, and grace, and fellowship we prize beyond the most fine gold. The things of earth are as nothing in preciousness compared with the things of Heaven.

“The dew.” How precious is this! How we pray and praise, when we have the dew! What refreshing, what growth, what perfume, what life there is in us when the dew is about! Above all things else, as plants of the Lord’s own right hand planting, we need the dew of His Holy Spirit.

“The deep that coucheth beneath.” Surely this refers to that unseen ocean underground which supplies all the fresh springs which make glad the earth. Oh to tap the eternal fountains! This is an unspeakable boon; let no believer rest till he possesses it. The all-sufficiency of Jehovah is ours for ever. Let us resort to it now.

 

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