“And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn”
(Luke 2:7) KJV
Christmas is arguably the most celebrated season around the world. It’s a time when all sort of beautiful decorations adorn the landscape such as exotic Christmas trees, people also go out of their way to give gifts to friends, loved ones as well as foes, and people from around the world also feast on all manner of cuisines and delicacies. It is also one in which people from every nation, tongue, tribe, and kindred acknowledge as a time of festivities depending on what their understanding of the season is. However, to Christians and believers in Christ, it is a time in which the Saviour of the world is born, and brings hope to mankind in its lost and deplorable state (Matt 1:21; Luke 2:14)
Every year different people, Christians inclusive celebrate the birth of God’s Son revealed in the mystery of the incarnation- the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us (John 1:14; 1 Tim 3:16). Each time they celebrate Christmas, their minds go back to the baby wrapped in swaddling clothes in a manger, and this paints a picture of an innocent, harmless and helpless baby born to Joseph and Mary, and every year the baby remains in this state in the manger without ever growing up to become a man.
However, the scriptures present a totally different picture of why God sent His Son into the world. Jesus as a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes in a manger couldn’t fulfil the Father’s ultimate will of saving man from his sinful and pitiful state, until He grew into a Son who understood the plans, purposes and the will of the Father.
In Isaiah’s prophecy in Isa 9:6-7:
“For unto us a child is born, unto us, a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this”
We see in the above scripture that a child is born but the son is given. It is also instructive to note that the government will only rest on the shoulder of the son but not the child. The shoulder is symbolic of the place of bearing the burden of government on one’s shoulder and being responsible to the heavenly vision, divine mandate, and the Father’s will. Jesus in His earthly ministry was only able to fulfil the Father’s will as a Son not as a baby in the manger but as a man child (Luke 3:23; Rev 12:5; Ps 2:7-9; Rev 2:27).
We see in His earthly ministry as Jesus grew from babyhood to Sonship. He willingly subjected Himself in complete and total obedience to the process, dealings, discipline of the Father, and followed the path that He mapped out for Him (Heb 5:8; John 18:11). And right now, He’s not a baby helplessly wrapped in swaddling clothes in a manger, but the Lord and Christ, who is the administrator of God’s universe, and one whose eyes are like flames of fire and His feet as burnished brass, and one who gives meaning to creation (Acts 2:36; Col 1:15-18; Heb 1:3-8; Rev 1:10-18). Hence, God’s purpose for sending His Son into the world is not just to save man and make him His child but to make him a son who can manage His estate on the face of the earth.
Note: God sent His Son into the world to become the Son of man so that He can make the sons of men sons of God.
The true purpose of Christmas is not just in celebrating the birth of the Messiah, but God’s ultimate purpose of sending Jesus is to make us sons of God and joint-heirs with Christ, and sons who can be led by His Spirit, understand His heart and can act with the power of attorney on His behalf in the earthly realm (Rom 8:17; 2 Cor 5:20).
Therefore, God’s ultimate desire for you isn’t fulfilled when you remain in the arena of babyhood Christianity like Jesus as a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes, and your desire is just in seeking His blessings, but you aren’t bothered about how to secure, manage the Father’s estate, and how to reclaim part of His estate that’s been ceded to the evil one.
I conclude with Paul’s epistle to the Galatians, where he points out that as long as the heir apparent remains a child, he is not different from a slave, until he grows into sonship, and comes into maturity to manage and take charge of his father’s estate, as no one in his right senses commits an estate to a child (Gal 4:1-4). Even so, God isn’t pleased when your idea and celebration of Christmas ends in the manger where the baby is born, and doesn’t culminate into growing into sonship, as only sons can bring about the manifestation of the glory of God upon the face of the earth. This is God’s utmost desire in this “kairos moment” (opportune time), as He desires to redeem creation from the bondage of corruption (Rom 8:19-23).