“The Word Became Flesh”
Sports coaches have for generations emphasized something every year usually at the beginning of the season: basics. The same holds true for business.
Executive coaching gets you back to basics. One business magazine puts it this way. “The return on investment for this kind of training ranges from 6-1 to 600-1.” [Dr. Richard D. Underwood found on ww.bizjournals.com]. Such things as good listening skills, knowing how to give good advice, and analyzing disputes are important, he says. “But what’s more important is things like self-control, persistence, personal motivation, and the ability to handle relationships smoothly,” says Dr. Underwood. “Success comes from developing good customer relationships.”
The same holds true when it comes to Christianity. This morning I want to say something more about the Christmas story; actually the basics of Christmas story.
There are some basic beliefs that simply make up Christianity. Clearly one central fact of the Scripture is the basic we know as “the incarnation of Christ.” So, for just a few moments today I want to have you consider this amazing and marvelous wonder regarding the Person of Jesus Christ.
I’ve titled today’s sermon:
“The Word Became Flesh.” Shall we pray?
Everything about the incarnation is impossible. Yet, as you know, “with men, this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26.
First and foremost, the incarnation says that God always tells the truth.
Here is a promise from the Prophet Isaiah and notice that by implication, He predicts the incarnation.
Isaiah 9:6 “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.”
The child to be born, according to Isaiah, was a “son” who would be given. And His name? Wonderful Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace.
There is just one way that this prophecy could ever come to pass – the incarnation.
So you see; the incarnation demonstrates the truthfulness of God Himself.
Here’s Micah 5:2. “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.”
How can any ruler in Israel be “from of old, from everlasting” other than the LORD Himself becoming a human baby?
And here’s the corresponding word in the NT. Luke 2:4 “And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) (5) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
(6) And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. (7) 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.”
You see folks, the OT, like the NT, does not use the term “incarnation,” but it certainly implies it.
First, the incarnation reminds us that God is a God of truth.
Second, the incarnation tells us that the only means God had at His disposal to save us was that He become one of us.
The term “incarnation” simply means “in/with flesh.” Well, from all you and I know about life and man, all of us who are living on planet earth, are made up of flesh. Yet the Bible says “The Word became flesh.”
Here’s what we know.
One, the Son of man descended from Heaven. John 3:13 “And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.”
John 6:51 “I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
Two, God sent His Son into the world. John 3:17 “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”