Remember the Christ of Christmas!
Jaded, or jubilant?
How are you feeling about this upcoming season? Excited? Expectant?
Or are you stressed out from all the running about here and there, anxious over the amount of money being spent, or sickened by the stench of commercialism which wafts from TV screens and shopping malls?
In all the hectic rush of making preparations, have we as believers become prey to the secular hype of the season, leaving us with little, or even no time to focus on the Christ of CHRISTmas?
I trust we are not so familiar with the nativity story that the wonder of God’s marvellous gift to humankind no longer enthrals us.
Stop! Step back, See
Sometimes it helps to stop, take a step back and examine the familiar from another perspective.
So let’s just do that now shall we? Let’s for a moment forget about the baby in the crib, the shepherds and wise men.
Let’s look instead at how two ordinary women’s lives were impacted by an extraordinary God. Let’s stop, step back and see what the Christmas narrative has to say to us personally about the miraculous experience of these two women.
Luke’s meticulous account of the Christmas story, brings Elizabeth and Mary centre stage. He showcases God’s awesome power in producing not just one, but two impossible pregnancies—one involving a virgin and the other, a woman who is described as “well advanced in years”, in other words well past the age of child-bearing!
Elizabeth – a blameless wife
Elizabeth is described as a “daughter of Aaron”. Now, as a woman directly connected with the Aaronic priesthood, Elizabeth would have been familiar with and subject to, the exacting demands of holiness required of the Levitical community. Indeed, Luke tells us that both she and her husband, Zachariah, were righteous and blameless (Luke 1:5-6). However, the couple are childless, a condition which in Jewish culture is seen as a curse, a condition about which Zachariah had apparently sought God.
Now, let me change your focus for a moment and shift it from Elizabeth to yourself. If you are a born-again believer, did you know that as far as God is concerned you are righteous, i.e. blameless?
Romans 5:1 tells us that we have been JUSTIFIED, which is a legal term declaring us as righteous, or signifying our acquittal. Derek Prince brings further enlightenment, when he explains that the terms means: just as if I had never sinned!
Are you aware dear woman of God that you are a member of God’s holy priesthood?
And now you have become living building-stones for God’s use in building his house. What’s more you are his holy priests; so come to him—[you who are acceptable to him because of Jesus Christ]—and offer to God those things that please him (1 Peter 2:5 The Living Bible).
What is it that pleases God? We can find the answer in Hebrews 11:6—FAITH! We are told that without faith, it is impossible to please our Father God.
So, now we know (if we didn’t already) that we are priests, and as priests unto God, we are blameless. And as priests we are to offer prayers that please him, prayers that are inspired by faith.
Now, let me ask you another question – is your prayer life barren—i.e. not producing results?
(To be continued…)
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