被从天上差遣到世上，像我们 人样样式，牺牲了自己的生命来救赎我们脱离罪恶的 刑罚，以便我们可以在祂心中和天父的家中占有一席之地。这就是我们庆祝的事情。
也许这句话听起来太 “悬浮” 了，但是当我们说 “愿你的国降临” 时，这的确是事实，这意味着我们正在欢迎并接受神作为在祂永恒的计划中的统治和统治我们生活的君王。不幸的是，有时候，有些疑惑使我们摇动并引诱我们摆脱祂的国度，就如玛利亚的丈夫并且小耶稣的父亲约瑟夫所经历的那样。
在黑暗中行走的百姓看见了大光；住在死荫之地的人有光照耀他们。 你使这国民繁多，加增他们的喜乐；他们在你面前欢喜，好像收割的欢喜，像人分掳物那样的快乐。 因为他们所负的重轭和肩头上的杖，并欺压他们人的棍，你都已经折断，好像在米甸的日子一样。 战士在乱杀之间所穿戴的盔甲，并那滚在血中的衣服，都必作为可烧的，当作火柴。
It’s that time of the year again, the most celebrated season of all. Christians and non-Christians alike celebrates this month one strong reason for family gathering, gift-giving, festive eating, and excessive decorating. The halls are decked with boughs of holly, Christmas trees are lit beautifully, warm cookies are ready in glistening jars, even our phones are constantly playing Christmas songs. Oh, how everything would be perfect, if only like in the past Christmases, we can also welcome family and friends for gatherings!
However, as Christians, let us be reminded that Christmas holds a deeper meaning than all those nice things. Sure, the festive eating and decorating and family gathering and gift sharing are all fun, but what we are truly celebrating is the love of the Father given to save us all. Jesus, the Son of God, was sent down to earth to walk our path as human, sacrificed Himself to atone our sins, and ultimately securing our spots both in the Father’s heart and house. Yes, we celebrate the whole story of the Kingdom that came to us, for us.
A child has been born for us;
a son has been given to us.
The responsibility of complete dominion
will rest on his shoulders, and his name will be:
The Wonderful One!
The Extraordinary Strategist!
The Mighty God!
The Father of Eternity!
The Prince of Peace!
(Isaiah 9:6, TPT)
This verse is written in the Bible, prophesied by Isaiah, centuries before Mary and Joseph entered the scene. What a strong promise it holds, full of the hope of salvation that the world needs. Jesus, the King of complete dominion was set to come and bring salvation for us, what more reason do we need to celebrate Christmas, right?
This Christmas declares the same message as its prophecy did: The King has come, and He brought the whole Kingdom with Him. It is even re-announced in the Lord’s Prayer Jesus Himself taught, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” The invitation and declaration to agree with and to welcome the Kingdom of God has been spoken through generations. The King Himself, who rules over everything and has defeated the enemy, now showers us with unlimited love as He has come to our reality!
Now it may sound unreal, but yes, as we declare “Thy Kingdom come”, it means we really welcome His authority, handing over the government to God and submit our life to enter His eternal plan. However, the lurking doubt sometimes gets the best of us and side-tracks us from enjoying life in His Kingdom. Sadly, this even happened to Joseph, Mary’s husband, too.
While Mary was ecstatic after her encounter with the angel Gabriel and gladly agreed to carry the holy bundle of joy (Luke 1:46), Joseph’s experience was not as bright. He even considered breaking the engagement to Mary altogether. It is understandable, considering all the things he must endure, including bringing himself to believe such “impossible” plan God had set for Mary. He did go through a serious season of doubt.
Isn’t this sound familiar? We have heard, read, listened to so many promises of God, and when it sounds and seems too impossible, we too think of quitting believing. The promise of healing over an incurable disease, of fruitfulness in business on the brink of bankruptcy, of provision during a phase of being laid-off… When our mind could not find a hint of a way out, we begin to plan our way out of faith.
It is easy for us to be doubtful, or skeptical, in these situations. Nothing we can see physically is certain, and nothing in our own plan is guaranteed. Just like Joseph had a season of doubt, we may be going through a similar conflict at this very uncertain time. However, remember this: God did not dismiss Joseph’s reluctance, nor did He condemn him for being skeptical. Instead, He gave assurance and grace in his hesitancy, and that personal encounter brought Joseph back on track. He once again welcomed the Kingdom of God in his life, and as a result, his story of obedience went all the way in history as we know it and take part in it.
Those who walked in darkness
have seen a radiant light shining upon them.
They once lived in the shadows of death,
but now a glorious light has dawned!
Lord, you have multiplied the nation
and given them overwhelming joy!
They are ecstatic in your presence
and rejoice like those who bring in a great harvest
and those who divide up the spoils of victory!
For you have broken the chains
that have bound your people
and lifted off the heavy bar across their shoulders,
the rod the oppressor used against them.
You have shattered all their bondage,
just as you did when Midian’s armies were defeated.
Every boot of marching troops
and every uniform caked with blood
will be burned as fuel for the fire.
(Isaiah 9:2-5, TPT)
Friends, the only reason God decided to bring the whole Kingdom down to our lives is because of His love for us. It is so great that He is not intimidated by our skepticism, so powerful that not even our doubt could cancel His promise for us. It is even written in the Bible, that He promised to carry us out of darkness to see His light as He brought His presence into our lives. So as we now celebrate yet another year of Christmas, let us once again declare that His Kingdom come, and only His will be done in our lives!