Read This Week: Luke 2

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. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 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.” – Luke 2:4-7 NIV

In-cred-i-ble (in-ˈkre-də-bəl) function: adjective 1 : too extraordinary and improbable to be believed  2 : an amazing or fantastic claim

Language is so powerful and important. It shapes the way we see the world, ourselves, and other people. What we say possesses amazing abilities. It can be humble yet boastful. It can attract or repel. It can build up and tear down. Words bring peace, preserve history, communicate truth, reunite friends, and harmonize families. They’ve even been known to sink a few ships, save a few lives, and close a few deals. It is a compelling thing about us as human beings in how we choose and use words.

Particularly fascinating is our use of the word incredible. It seems to find its way into an everyday conversation and into any speech or remark that necessitates an adjective. But it begs the question: are all of these things actually incredible? Hyperbole is one thing but are they too extraordinary to be believed? Are these things we talk about so improbable that people would not trust their legitimacy? Was lunch so exceptional that it defied description? Maybe, but let’s consider something that is all of those things and more.

A young engaged woman, who would not consummate her relationship with her husband until after her child is born, is visited by an angel and told she will be impregnated by supernatural means and conceive a son who is to be named Jesus. Jesus will not be an ordinary child. Instead, he will be the transcendent Son of God, perform many miracles, attract a myriad of followers and enemies, die a cruel death on a cross, rise from the dead after three days and reign over a kingdom that has no end.

All of this would occur just as the Scriptures foretold many years before. God had promised that the Messiah would be human, and not an angelic being (Genesis 3:15). He would be of Jewish origin (Genesis 12:1-3; Numbers 24:17). He would be from the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:10), and the family of David (2 Samuel 7:1-17). The Savior would be born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14) in Bethlehem, the city of David (Micah 5:2). He would be the Lamb of God sacrificed for the sins of the world (John 1:29). And Luke 2 shows us that it all happened.

When Mary said in Luke 1:38, “I am the Lord’s servant, may your word to me be fulfilled,” she knew her life experience would be part of the fulfillment of divine prophecy dating thousands of years. She knew her journey would be too extraordinary to believe at times. She knew that it would be so incredible that people would not trust its legitimacy. She knew but believed.

And because of the most significant moment of all time, it is always and shall ever be an amazing and fantastic claim for us to know and love Jesus. To have a relationship with the one true God who created us and sent His Son into this world to bring Himself eternal glory and redeem mankind. Knowing all of this, incredible is the appropriate word for the real story of Christmas.

16 Comments

  1. Ken on December 23, 2020 at 11:49 pm

    Happy Birthday Jesus!

    • Jason on December 30, 2020 at 10:39 am

      Indeed! I hope you guys had a great Christmas celebrating the birth of the Savior.

  2. almaschmidt on December 24, 2020 at 8:50 am

    Happy Birthday to Jesus. This week, God gave me a song called, “This is the Season”:

    This is the season, season
    This is the season of our Lord

    Many years ago a beautiful baby boy was born
    His name is Jesus
    Born in Bethlehem

    Glory Glory Glory to the highest
    A king was born

    He believes in all of us
    Let’s worship, worship, worship our Lord
    Who brings us joy, understanding, and love
    Because we believe in our Lord

    This is the season, season
    This is the season of our Lord. Amen.

    Happy Birthday our sweet, Jesus. We love and adore you.

    • Jason on December 30, 2020 at 10:59 am

      This is a beautiful Christmas tribute to Jesus, Alma. It reads like a carol or old spiritual. This was my favorite part:

      Glory Glory Glory to the highest
      A king was born

      He believes in all of us
      Let’s worship, worship, worship our Lord
      Who brings us joy, understanding, and love
      Because we believe in our Lord

      What a joyous and encouraging truth to know that the King of Kings believes in and loves us.

      • Almaschmidt on January 2, 2021 at 1:26 am

        Thank you so much Jason you always make me feel amazing. Your encouragement truly is a blessing. Hope you and your family enjoyed Christmas and The Birth of Jesus.

        • Jason on January 6, 2021 at 10:25 am

          I am so humbled and blessed to know that I encourage you and make you feel that way, Alma. You are such an encouragement and blessing to me as well. I pray you had a wonderful Christmas too. Thank you and Happy New Year!

  3. Heidi on December 26, 2020 at 4:51 pm

    Thank you, Father God, for loving us so much that you sent Jesus to us. Happy Birthday, Jesus

    I know you had a wonderful Birthday Jesus because you’re hanging out with people who love you so much. I love to celebrate your Birthday here with people who love you. Thank you so much for coming here to help us and save us so we can be with you forever and ever.

    I love you. You are the best gift for sure.

    • Jason on December 30, 2020 at 11:08 am

      Beautiful tribute, Heidi. I pray God’s richest blessings on you and your family in this season and always.

  4. Kathy on December 27, 2020 at 9:22 am

    Happy Birthday, Jesus! We needed a Savior. The world needs peace. The angels came and went but Jesus remained. The Shepherds good news they shared with everyone, and everyone was amazed who heard it. We are all born in sin. Jesus came here as a baby identifying with sinners. He did also at His baptism and on the cross. He continued to live a life of pain, shame, and blood-shedding for us His children until He finished on the cross the work His Father had given Him to do. Mary and Joseph had a combination of joy and surprise, to see how God has touched the lives of others with an understanding of their Son.

    No matter how well you know Jesus, there is something special about seeing someone else come to know Him. Mary would know that mothering Jesus would be both a great privilege and a great burden. I know what it is like to lose a son, My mama’s heart hurt’s with Mary’s. I didn’t have to watch my son be tortured or suffer until He died. God and Mary both know what it is like to lose a Son. I know they know my pain. What a blessing that the birth of Jesus is why we celebrate Christmas. We needed a Savior and I am so blessed and grateful to be saved.

    • Jason on December 30, 2020 at 11:21 am

      Thank you so much for these heartfelt and deep thoughts into Luke 2, Kathy. This was such a profound and emotional insight: Mary would know that mothering Jesus would be both a great privilege and a great burden. She did know all of that, yet she believed and followed in obedience. Just as God calls us to do.

      I, too, know the pain of losing a son but I can’t imagine being in eternal communion with my son like God the Father and sending Him to be born, suffer and die to redeem mankind. What a Savior and what power in His gospel that we can lay hold to at Christmas and always. Blessings to you.

      • Kathy on January 2, 2021 at 9:24 am

        Thank you so much Jason. It hurts my heart that you have had to go through this same loss I have had. We can take comfort that God knows our pain and He will continue to heal our hearts. Grief Share is an awesome support group that has helped me, as well as Compassionate Friends. Blessing to you also Jason.

        • Jason on January 6, 2021 at 10:28 am

          We absolutely can take comfort in that. I am so blessed to hear that God has given you peace and granted healing to your heart. He has certainly done the same for me over the years. He is a good and faithful Father like that. Blessings and love to you.

  5. Jeri Centers on December 27, 2020 at 9:58 am

    From and inspired by Luke 2:10:

    May the joy of Christmas ring in your ears
    May the hope it brings rid you of your fears.

    For unto us this day, a child was born
    A Savior to the world one glorious morn’.

    May the joy of Christmas fill you with cheer
    May the peace it brings last all throughout the year.

    What that means to me is that it’s the joy of Christmas so let it be loud and clear. May His love bring and draw you to Jesus, near and close.

    From and inspired by Luke 2:11:

    Why do you celebrate Christmas?
    What does it do for you?
    Does the real meaning of it hold for you what is true?

    For Christmas is God’s gift, of His love for one and all
    He sent His Son so you would receive salvations call.

    What do you want for Christmas?
    What are you looking for?
    Do you not know by now you can’t find it in a store?
    You may think you don’t need Him but, He will always want you to ask Him for forgiveness
    He can make all things new.

    What that means to me is that Christmas is only about the Savior’s undying love for you.

    • Jason on December 30, 2020 at 11:33 am

      Thank you for this offering to God, and for continuing to bless others with your creative gift, Jeri. I love how you blended the two themes of these verses in your poems. The eternal truth of the first one informs the promise(s) of the second one.

      The joy, peace, and hope of Christ that came through His birth is all we need in this life and for all time. It can’t be bought or purchased or manufactured by human hands. That is truly the meaning of Christmas in this season and all year round.

  6. Sam Centers on December 27, 2020 at 4:27 pm

    God drew me to verse 47 this week. And all that heard Him say was that the people were astonished and overwhelmed and bewildered with wonder at His intelligence and understanding and His replies. And what God said to me was, “My son as you grow in me and with me, the people you come in contact with will be amazed with the new you. And your ability to answer there questions about me.” That means to me that we should always seek Him in all we do while learning to be as much like our Father as we truly can.

    • Jason on December 30, 2020 at 11:49 am

      I really enjoyed your post, Sam. It’s so encouraging word from God to know that if we seek Him and pursue the knowledge of God that His Spirit will make us powerful and effective as we minister to and testify about His grace and goodness. As you said, “The people we come in contact with will be amazed at the new us. And your ability to answer questions about God.”

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