The Birth Of Christ – His First Advent (Gal. 4:4-5)

By | Jan 14, 2018
The Apostle Paul tells us in my text that, “when the fullness of time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.” The birth of Christ was the most significant event in all the history of man. It was the fulfillment of the promise that God gave to Adam and Eve that “the seed of the woman would come and bruise the head of the serpent.” The words, “when the fullness of time was come,” reveals that in the eternities past, the triune God sat in counsel concerning all humankind. A divine purpose and plan was laid out before the foundation of the world and these words disclose the unfolding of that plan.
Christianity is the only religion that places its credibility in the fulfillment of prophecies made thousands of years previous to their fulfillment. The promise of the “seed of the woman,” was made four thousand years before its fulfillment. Jacob, prior to his death prophesied that “the scepter shall not depart from Judah…until Shiloh (Jesus) come.” Seven hundred years before the His birth in Bethlehem, Isaiah made a declaration as though it had just happened when he wrote these words; “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, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Simeon was told that he would not see death until he had seen the Christ-child. At the end of eight days, following His birth, the parents brought the child Jesus into the temple according to the custom of the law, we read: “then (Simeon) took him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, ‘Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: for mine eyes have seen thy salvation.”
When the fullness of time came, eternity’s clock struck and the angel announced to the shepherds the birth of the Son of God. As the heavenly host bowed low in the balcony of heaven and their anthem filled the sky, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” The salvation and hope of the human race hinged on that announcement. The mystery of the Incarnation was “the Word was made Flesh and dwelt among us.” The Eternal and Infinite becomes an Infant. “He made Himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:…He humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” What condescension! He, who was the Ancient of days, the maker of heaven and earth, the creator and sustainer of all things, has stooped to the place of a servant in order to be our Savior. To create the world was great but to re-make (redeem) man was greater. Matthew Henry said, “When God made man out of the dust of the ground all He needed to do was to breathe, but to redeem fallen man He had to bleed.” He was made man in order that he could be “made sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.”
He came “to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.” When Abraham journeyed to Moriah to offer his son, Isaac, back to God, Isaac asked, “where is the lamb?” Abraham replied, “God will provide Himself a lamb.” While on the altar with Isaac under an upraised knife, God spoke to Abraham, “lay not thy hand upon the lad.” God provided a ram in Isaac’s stead. That ram was the type of Christ, for Jesus took our place on Calvary. The incarnation was on purpose for the crucifixion. The cradle would have no meaning without the cross. “Thou shalt call His name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.” “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Let us gladly seek His face, receive His name and partake of His nature. While there was no room for him in the inn, let us not refuse Him entrance into our hearts and lives. Let all humanity open their hearts and make room for His presence and receive Him with joy and gladness.
When we appropriate by faith the salvation that He provided for us in His first advent, we then can look for and love His appearance in His second advent. Let us, once again, be reminded that the first advent was promised and prophesied thousands of years before He finally appeared. He came not as some supposed in pomp and ceremony but as a lowly babe, born in a barn and laid in a feeding trough. The purpose of His coming was, “to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.” After thirty three years He was offered up on a cruel cross as “the Lamb of God” to take away the sins of all who would receive Him as their Savior. The writer now reminds us of the promise of another appearance, “to those who look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”
Remember that eternity’s clock keeps perfect time and as Peter said, “the Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness……one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” The hope of the church in all ages has been the imminent coming of Christ. As Simeon and Anna looked with great anticipation for His first coming, let us with great anticipation look for His second coming. This Christmas, while we sing and herald the good news of His birth in Bethlehem, let us look forward with great faith and expectation to the coming bridegroom.

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