December 25, 2019
The Jesus Candle
By Lynda McKinney Lambert
December 25, 2019
Peace on Earth, Goodwill to Men
Please enjoy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M7670CXvPX0
How can Jesus be both God and God’s son?
It is documented in the ancient historical accounts that Jesus is God’s son, who was born of a woman. This is the reason we celebrate Christmas annually for over 2,000 years. We celebrate because we understand that God fulfilled the prophecies and promises made to the Israelites, that he would send his son to them to be their deliverer.
Also, these scriptures clearly state that Jesus is God. We can read in Genesis, the first book of the Old Testament, that in the beginning, before the creation of the world, there is a conversation between the 3 parts of the God-head. The Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit existed and created all that is.
This is the Incarnation – the in-dwelling of the divine, inside of Mary’s body. She safely carried her baby who was both human and divine, and delivered him on that miraculous night in Bethlehem.
David Mathas writes, Deairing God – Read it here!
(The articles on this site are fantastic. Below is a quote from him.)
The doctrine of the incarnation claims that the eternal second person of the Trinity took on humanity in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. A helpful way to remember the key aspects of the incarnation is the summary statement of John 1:14: “The Word became flesh.
Before any human was created, there was
The Word is the Trinity – God.
Christians have puzzled over this for centuries. It is normal to struggle to understand how the relationship between God, Jesus, and Holy Spirit works. The Trinity existed before the foundations of the world. They are outside of time. They have no beginning, middle or end. Now, that is hard to grasp, isn’t it! As finite creatures it is difficult for humans to understand that which is infinite. Our minds cannot grasp what it means to have no beginning and no end. Eternity.
Do you recall at some point in your life, you were learning how to count? Did the time ever come when you realized you could never come to the end of counting?
I have heard someone say at one time that when he realized there was no end to the numbers and he could go on counting forever, he was overwhelmed with this realization. How can we grasp it with our human mind?
When I was a small child, I often tried to think about what life is as I lie awake in my bed at night. I thought about eternity and tried to imagine what it is. This was a puzzle to my child’s brain and to be honest, it is a puzzle to my well-educated, well-read, brain. I am a finite creation. I have a beginning-of-life story. Now, in my seventh decade of life, I am often aware of mortality as friends and family members are no longer here with us. I think about how I, too, am moving toward my own end-of-life story. As humans, we seem to have a linear timeline and we consider our past, live in our present, and hope for our future.
I think the most exciting verse in the entire Bible is this:
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten….–The Greek word means “tabernacled.” John 1: 14.
We can understand the meaning of God coming to earth as a baby. Mary’s body became a tabernacle of God. God dwelled inside of Mary. She was carrying God inside of her – in the form of Jesus who is The Word. This was planned in eternity, before anything was created by The Trinity.
WHY did Jesus come to the earth?
Jesus became human so that he could enter into our world and die for humans. The Bible treats this as something to marvel at: … Jesus Christ ‘though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.’ (Philippians 2:6-8)
The actual mechanics of how God had a human son are not explained to us, but we are left in no doubt that Mary’s conception and pregnancy are miraculous.
We can read chapter 1 of the gospel of Luke to see the angel tell Mary that she will fall pregnant. The gospel of John, which is written in symbolic language at the beginning, speaks about ‘the Word becoming flesh’. ‘ This makes it clear that Jesus is the eternal God becoming human.
- There is only one Almighty God – so even as we talk about the three persons of the trinity we are talking about one God. All three persons of the trinity are God. If you want to look at some verses, you can read more at:
- There is relationship in the trinity – the Son (Jesus) is obedient to the Father (Luke 22:42); the Holy Spirit is sent by the Father and the Son (John 16:15ff).
In the book of John, Jesus explains himself. We can get the picture of the whole gospel and how it builds together our picture of the relationship of the Son to the Father, especially as the Son came to earth as a man to reveal the Father to us.
What does this mean to me?
In the Incarnation I can see something that is unique and true about God.
God wanted to live in a human form in order to fellowship with us. This means that when we accept Jesus into our life, ask him to come and indwell us, to live in us, and to be a part of us – he does! Our God is the God who lives INSIDE of us. He is not out there in space or beyond our reach or knowing. He is not “the Universe,” but is the creator of the entire universe and that includes humanity. When we ask God to be with us, he enters into our very being – becomes a part of us, indwells us. We are no longer only flesh and blood, but we are a dwelling place for God as the Holy Spirit as well. We are complete, as we were created to be in the beginning.
I will bring this essay to a final thought from my own life story. In the summer of 1973, we hosted 2 people who had come from Vietnam to stay with us for a short weekend. Don and Alta Warren were the missionaries who lived for a number of years in Vung Tau, Vietnam. My husband, Bob, and I adopted a little boy through their help. Our new son, Robert Andrew Lambert, arrived in the US on December 28, 1972. They came to visit us and him that summer. Before they left, the woman gave me a little book she thought I would like. The book is Come Away, My Beloved, by Frances J. Roberts. (Copyright 1970.) While reading this book, I began to feel the presence of Jesus and I was deeply moved. Bob and I gave our life to Jesus in October, just 3 months after Don and Alta visited us.
I’ve always loved to read philosophy and personal life stories. That summer I was also reading Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s book, The Cost of Discipleship. I was being prepared to make a decision that would change my life forever, but I did not know that yet. Here’s what I read in Bonhoeffer’s book:
The cross is laid on every Christian. The first Christ-suffering which every man must experience is the call to abandon the attachments of this world. It is that dying of the old man which is the result of his encounter with Christ. As we embark upon discipleship we surrender ourselves to Christ in union with his death—we give over our lives to death. Thus it begins; the cross is not the terrible end to an otherwise god-fearing and happy life, but it meets us at the beginning of our communion with Christ. When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.
“When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.”
In Frances J. Robert’s collection of short essays, I was encountering Jesus every time I picked up her book to read. For example, here is a quote form her essay, “The Healing Power of Joy,” (pp. 26 – 29.)
Do ye desire to follow me truly? Look for the blood-stained prints of my feet. Go, as it were, to the cold, unyielding rock in the Garden of Gethsemane, where self if put aside, and the cup of suffering is accepted. Die to thine own treacherousness and deceitful heart. Rise with determination to go on unflinchingly, not hoping to spare thyself. Save thy life, and ye shall surely lose it Offer it up to Me, this very day, in a renewal of consecration unto sacrificial living, and I will accept thee and thou shalt know joy as new wine.
Quote from Come Away my Beloved, Frances J. Roberts.
Enjoy this music as you celebrate the reason for the season: Listen Now!
Brought to you with love from the writings of Lynda McKinney Lambert, December 25, 2019.
Copyright, 2019. All rights reserved. You may share my essay but I ask that you respect my copyright.
Please join Christians around the world today as we light The Jesus Candle on the Advent wreath.
If you missed any of the Advent articles you can visit the links below.
#1: The Candle of Hope , Part 1: Read Part 1 Here!
The Candle of Hope, Part 2: Read Part 2 Here!
#2: The Candle of Preparation: Read it here!
@3: The Shepherds Candle: Read it here!
#4: The Angel Candle: Read it here!
#5: The Jesus Candle: Read it Here!
An earlier version of this article is in a blog post from 2014, I have expanded it at this time.
Revised: December 25, 2019.
Copyright, 2019. Lynda McKinney Lambert.
All rights reserved. You may share my stories, poems and photos but honor my Copyright, please.
I Love You for That!
Authors Page for Lynda McKinney Lambert: http://www.dldbooks.com/lyndalambert
“Lynda McKinney Lambert writes spare poems & thoughtful personal essays.” NLS (BARD)