We cannot appreciate some gifts fully unless we know what went into giving them. That’s certainly true when it comes to the ultimate gift God has given us. We must consider what it took for the Son of God to be born as a man. Otherwise, we will miss the depths of God’s grace and love.
Who is the Son of God?
The Son of God did not cease to be fully God when He became man––that would be impossible. But, He did, for a time, give up some of His privileges. He was, in the words of Paul, rich, but for our sake He became poor:
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9)
The One whom the angels worshipped became the object of man’s hatred and rejection. He who shared in the Father‘s glory before creation was weary, thirsty, and burdened with grief. He was even willing to be crucified for sinners like us.
Paul’s Response to God’s Gift
We will never fully be able to wrap our minds around the incarnation. But, the more we reflect on it, the more we should be in awe. The God who created all things and is worthy of all praise and worship has given His Son as the ultimate gift so that we might be reconciled to Him. Our riches were made possible because of Christ’s poverty. Now, at Christmas, the apostle Paul’s response in 2 Corinthians 9:15 seems especially fitting: “Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!”
This excerpt is adapted from Radical’s new Daily Reading Guide for Advent titled “To Us A Son Is Given.” You can download it for free.