Why did Jesus come into the world? There would be many answers to this question, but in this Advent season let’s give Jesus the opportunity to answer some of the questions that center on His birth. He will give us the straight story. Remember that He said, “For this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me” (John 18:37).
If we will seriously listen to his voice speaking to us through the Scriptures, we will hear some great biblical teachings, which are a part of the Christian confessions. Here is one of these revelations:
Jesus said, “I must preach the good news of the Kingdom of God because that is why I was sent” (Luke 4:43).
The people in Jesus’ hometown of Nazareth had great respect for Jesus. They could have received him as a rabbi and been proud of his ability to teach. Luke writes, “He taught in the synagogue and everyone praised him” (Luke 4:15). However, when he read the scroll in the service and said, “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord. . . Today this Scripture has been fulfilled” (Luke 4:18-19, 21), those words rocked the synagogue in Nazareth.
The people spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” they asked. But when Jesus announced to these people that he had been sent from God, they became furious and drove him out of town.
This is one of the great truths of Christianity. Jesus was not simply a man who was born like all others, he was also the God-Man sent by the Father to live among us. This is the teaching of the Incarnation. God became man. His coming was part of God’s way of salvation.
Listen to other parts of the word of God as they emphasize that God would send his Son to this world.
The first Scripture passage is Genesis 3:15. God says to the tempter, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers. He will crush your head and you will strike his heel.”
God tells Satan the tempter that he has succeeded in tempting Adam and Eve. They have fallen and brought sin to the world. This places them in an imperfect, fallen world and out of relationship with their Creator. Consequently, Satan has brought suffering into this world. The cross is a reminder of sin which brings pain, suffering, hatred, sickness, and death. However, Christ has come, and he will crush Satan’s head. He will destroy Satan. The empty tomb and the resurrected Christ is a reminder that sin, death, and the devil have been defeated.
Jesus was sent to be the Victor. Humans have never been without sin after the fall, but neither have they been without the promise of the Savior.
A second passage of Scripture tells us that Christ lived as part of the Godhead before coming to earth. This is recorded in John 1: “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:1-2, 14).
This is beyond human comprehension. Only the Holy Spirit working in our hearts can teach us that Jesus is both God and man. It is the teaching of the incarnation. The babe of Bethlehem’s manger is man, but he is also God. Here he was sent to walk with humans and be in all points tempted as we are, yet remain without sin.
The third passage comes to us from the inspired pen of St. Paul, who wrote in
Galatians 4, “But when the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born under the law to redeem those who were under the Law that we might receive the full right of sons” (Galatians 4:4).
You might ask, “Where did Paul receive this information?” You remember that after his conversion Paul spent three years in Arabia. It was a time for Paul to be prepared for his mission, which was to bring the Gospel of Christ to the Gentile world. It could be that God chose that place to reveal the great teaching of the incarnation Ð that Jesus was God born in the flesh. The apostle wrote to the Corinthian church, “God was, in Christ, reconciling the world to himself”(II Corinthians 5:19). Paul also makes it very clear that Jesus was sent by the Father.
Many people have been sent, and people can ask, What is so unique about Jesus being sent? The uniqueness is that Jesus was the second part of the Trinity. He was sent from heaven to perform the mission of reconciling God and a fallen humanity. His desire was that people might live in relationship with each other and with their Creator, as was God’s intention from the beginning.
After Jesus had completed his work on earth, he commissioned his followers to go into the world and preach the Gospel, and then he returned to his Father. So we can say that the One who was sent by the Father sends his children as his ambassadors to this world. It is important that we know this truth, for it helps us to understand who we are and what our primary purpose is while we wait for our Lord to return and receive us to himself.
What is the truth about Christmas? Jesus answers the question in these words: Christmas is celebrating that time in history when I was sent into this world by my Father to be your Savior. I love you. Come to Me and we will walk through life together and then I’ll take you to be with Me. I have a place for you. Will you not receive Me?