Three Questions for Christmas
Dr. Ray PritchardDr. Ray Pritchard is the president of Keep Believing Ministries, in Internet-based ministry serving Christians in 225 countries. He is the author of 29 books, including Stealth Attack, Fire and Rain, Credo, The ABCs of Christmas, The Healing Power of Forgiveness, An Anchor for the Soul and Why Did This Happen to Me? Ray and Marlene, his wife of 39 years, have three sons-Josh, Mark and Nick, two daughters-in-law--Leah and Vanessa, and four grandchildren grandsons: Knox, Eli, Penny and Violet. His hobbies include biking, surfing the Internet, and anything related to the Civil War.
- 2010 Dec 09
You never know how a baby will turn out.
I feel like more of an expert on this subject than I was a year ago. Over Thanksgiving our new grandson Knox came for a visit. The rest of our family came too, and his father and mother came with him, but Knox was the star of the show all weekend long.
We all have our jobs to do, and mine was picking up our four-month-old grandson (who is a hefty little boy) and walking him around the house. It really wasn't a "job" at all. A long time ago I picked up his father and walked him around our house in Norwalk, California. That was in the last century, a nice phrase that reminds me of the passing of the years. I am actually happy about because I could look around and see three generations in the same room: grandfather, father, son . As I walked Knox, I would sing to him. Usually I started with "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine," a song I remember my father singing often. Then I sang Christmas carols and Scripture songs, including one I used to sing to Josh, "The wicked they flee when no man pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion" (see Proverbs 28:1). I made up the melody when Josh was a little boy, and now I sing it to his son, my grandson.
About our grandson I would only venture to say that he is absolutely captivating. This grandparenting business is entirely different from being a parent even though I can't exactly explain it. I find myself thinking about that little boy and praying for him and wondering how he will turn out.
Parents and grandparents have been wondering about babies since time began. It must have been that way when Jesus was born. Luke 2:19 tells us that after the shepherds visited Mary and no doubt shared what the angels had said to them, she "treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." There was certainly a lot to think about:
"He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end" (Luke 1:33).
"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord" (Luke 2:11).
"A sword will pierce your own soul too" (Luke 2:35).
The last verse of Mark Lowry's beautiful Mary, Did You Know? poses the question this way:
You never know how a baby will turn out, do you?
Mary did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know that your baby boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your baby boy is heaven's perfect Lamb?
This sleeping child you're holding is the great I am.
This one turned out to be the Savior of the world.
But not everyone knows that or understands it or believes it. As we prepare our hearts for Christmas, let's remind ourselves once again who Jesus really is. Revelation 1:5 offers a threefold picture of our Lord. This verse is part of John's introduction to his book where he introduces himself and wishes his readers grace and peace. Here is his description of Jesus Christ: "Who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth."
These three phrases help us understand the true identity of the baby born in Bethlehem. Each one answers a question we would like to ask about Jesus Christ.
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