Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men[a] from the east came to Jerusalem, 2 saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose[b] and have come to worship him.” 3 When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; 4 and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. 5 They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:
6 “‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’”
7 Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” 9 After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.
I consider myself to be a glass half full kind of person. But when given the “injustice” of the Christmas story… the more I researched, the more I realized we are looking from a glass half empty view for this discussion, if not a glass completely empty view.
Jesus often found himself in unfair situations from the very beginning. He faced many challenges and obstacles that no adults must face. These challenges start with Mary & Joseph. They were faced with Poverty and Hardship. Joseph was stripped of his job. Mary most likely dealt with gossip and rumors being unmarried and pregnant. They had to walk 70 miles to Bethlehem to be counted in the census. They were greeted upon their arrival with no room to be found in a foreign land with just what they had carried with them. They were forced to seek shelter in a stable surrounded by animals.
Jesus was born to face a life full of challenges. He would face hatred towards him, questioning his every move, his every word. He would experience denial of who He was and ultimately betrayal by one closest to Him.
Faith in God’s plan led Mary and Joseph to positive things, their faith rested solely on the first coming of Jesus. They were reassured by God that “everything” would be ok. The new parents still rejoiced even though their situation wasn’t fit for a king. This unfair journey leads to phenomenal things you and I know.
Blessed are the poor, for they will inherit the kingdom of Heaven.
Jesus Christ, in the flesh, as a defenseless infant had an army of angels who appeared on His behalf. Not to fight with violence but with courage and kindness. Jesus brings promise with him. Jesus brings Hope. Jesus brings Joy.
We live in an unjust world. We all experience injustice at some point. This Christmas season we must remember that Jesus faced the toughest situations. The worst injustice that could happen to someone, happened to Jesus, and He volunteered for it. He volunteered himself to take on the sins of the world so that you and I can receive the gift of eternal life through the cross. I, myself, think that it is unfair for my lord and savior to do that for me. I’m excited because I no longer must be incomplete, but I am allowed to become complete in Christ. In fact, we all become complete when we trust Christ because the most beautiful thing is the hope and joy that came with Jesus.
That’s what we truly needed. Not “materialistic things.” Our hope rests solely on His second coming.
How can so many unfair and dark situations be accompanied by the brightest star in the sky, by the brightest light of our life, and by paving the way for our Savior? That is what Christmas is all about. All of us can know that we received Hope when Jesus was born, but it’s also important to remember the injustice that Jesus had to endure from the very beginning.
Jesus is our Hope today. Jesus is our Joy today. Jesus is our light today and tomorrow.
Oh, come let us adore him, for He is Christ the Lord.