ON THAT SILENT NIGHT
“THEY (magi) saw the child (the infant) with his mother Mary and they bowed down and worshiped him” (Mathew 2:11)
The growth of a child, before its birth, is in the mother’s womb. After it is born, the mother continues to take care of the infant keeping it held in her hand for feeding. Probably these wise men from the east saw the child in her hands.
In modern days every child that is born in a hospital gets extra care in an incubator when it is affected by any ill health due to early birth or any kind of infections etc. Once it is fit to combat the surrounding troubles, the child comes back into the luxurious place called “the mother’s lap.”
Infant Jesus was a healthy child. Modern diseases were not present or they were unknown. By natural immunity the child would fight against any disease. And mother’s milk was sufficient to give that strength to the child. Nothing was necessary for boosting it and mothers had no such compact-plans in those days. Once the child was breast-fed, the child would have been resting on a mattress of hay.
Angels descending from heaven said to the shepherds in the field about Jesus: “And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:12)
“And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph and the baby who was lying in a manger” (Luke 2:16). The birth of this child was a miracle indeed. He was born of the Spirit.
“She was found with child of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 1:18)
“The angel answered and said to her (Mary), The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee; therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35).
Thus He became the “only begotten Son of God that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have ever lasting life.” (John 3:16). But salvation came to us only after He was sacrificed on the cross after he grew up and was 33½ years old.
The wise men worshiped him. They knew what the child would be. But they were to go home since they could not wait for 33 years. Therefore, as it is customary in the eastern countries, they worshiped the child. “And having been warned in a dream (by God) not to go back to Herod (the king) they returned to their country by another route.” (Mt.2:12). The infant Jesus never spoke to them. He must have been sleeping in his mother’s lap very peacefully.
No other miracles happened that night. Nothing is recorded in the Bible. If there were any miracles, the wise men and the shepherds would have been excited and would have told others about them. However, we read that they reported only about the birth of the Child.
YOU and I, our parents, grandparents and even our great grandparents were all of the “growing” kind. We all grew from infant stage to be boys/girls and then to be adults. No one remains an infant for 2000 years. Only adults can produce offspring, and we are ourselves the proof for it. The child was taken to the temple on the 8th day and all the religious rites were carried out by his parents and they named him JESUS (Luke 2: 21 -24). The infant Jesus grew up to be a boy. He obeyed the Ten Commandments just like any other Jew and honored his father and mother. Probably he learnt carpentry too from his father, being their family profession.
THE BOY JESUS:
He was an exemplary child. He knew the scriptures well at the age of 12. “And…they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking questions. Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.” … (Luke 2: 47).
But, he performed no miracles.
Jesus went to Jordan and requested John to baptize him so that he could begin to carry out God’s plan, for which he was sent to this Earth. This happened at the age of 30, and he was not an infant. He received the Holy Spirit after his baptism. He then, “… began to preach from Capernaum.” (Mt. 4:12 – 17) ….And perform miracles beginning with a miracle at a marriage in Cana. (John 2:11).
A list of all his miracles cannot be written here as they were many during his stay on earth. The Gospel according to John ends like this:
“This is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know his testimony is true. Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.” (John.21:24, 25)
Miracles happened when the adult Jesus took over the task entrusted to Him by his Heavenly Father and not in the house of his earthly father Joseph and his wife, Mary – the most blessed one among all the women on earth. Jesus left his earthly house to fulfill the will of the One who sent him. His parents on earth were surrogate parents, used for the purpose by God. Their role was limited in Jesus life and ended at the age of 30 when he became a responsible adult. He had to carry the burden of the sins of the world to the cross so that you and I are delivered from it.
When Moses performed miracles, Pharaoh’s magicians also performed the same. But God knew their limitations. When King Saul lost the favor of God, he wanted to talk to prophets. The witch of Endor deceived him in speaking to the dead, and that in spite of her limitations. Those spirits that work against the Holy Spirit from our Lord may use men, women, and even children to perform some miracles through them. We should not get deceived or frightened by them. Remember that ultimately, the Lord reigns over the Earth and Heaven.
ON THIS CHRISTMAS DAY:
It is nice to remember the infant Jesus lying in the manger with a beautiful smile on his little face. Yes, “For unto us a child was born”. No doubt about it. (Read Isa 9:6). It is a HAPPY occasion! He was sent to bring about salvation to mankind. He certainly grew up to bear the sins of the world and died on the cross as a final sacrifice to deliver us from our sins.
Therefore the Bible says:
1. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (not the infant), and thou shall be saved, and thy house”(Acts 16:31)
2. “… and by his wounds we are healed.” (Isaiah 53:5)” …. He did not get flogged and develop wounds while he was an infant. He only heard the lullabies of his mother and slept peacefully in her lap.
3. “… and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7) … that is the sinless blood that the adult Jesus shed on the cross.
4. The Holy Spirit was sent by his Heavenly Father after Jesus ascended to Heaven (he was not an infant, then). Even mother Mary had to pray and wait to receive this Holy Spirit. She was one among the 120 people at the upper room praying for that anointing. … (Read Acts.1:14)
5. At his second coming, He will return as the King of Kings and the Lion of Judah, not as an infant, but as an adult.
6. Apostle Paul says:
“Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish (between) good from evil.” …. … (Heb. 5:13, 14 NIV)
Therefore we should grow up in spirit by allowing that infant in us to grow.
CHRISTMAS is a happy event indeed. But we should make it to that “HAPPY DAY” when our sins are washed away by the blood of the adult Jesus. We should be born-again infants, and then….
Grow up in Jesus!
‘Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight …’
Author – C. Samuel Gift (Bethel Seniors Fellowship, Bethel AG Church, Bengaluru)
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