Pierre, Jean-Baptiste-Marie, Nativity
“3. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. 4 They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. 5 To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen.”
Do you ever find yourself being disappointed with Christmas? Sometimes I do. Sometimes it doesn’t live up to memories of my childhood. Or I feel a let-down when Christmas ends because I want “it” to keep going.
Perhaps that should be a sign to me that the emphasis needs to be less on the activities and materialism of Christmas and even more on Christ Himself. Maybe I need a reality check from Paul…
Paul says that He would gladly be accursed for the sake of His Jewish kinsman. He longed for them to accept Christ…so much so that He was willing to be cursed if it would mean they would then understand. (Wow.) Because Jesus was theirs in the sense that He was Jewish as a fleshly person. So Jesus, the long-awaited Messiah, God incarnate, came from their race. And this Jesus who was flesh and Jewish was also God over all.
Jesus, the Jew, is God over all. Jesus, the man, was God over all. Jesus, the carpenter, was God over all. Jesus, a man people saw and knew and conversed with, was God over all.
Did you catch the list of all that Paul said belonged to the Jews? Christ Himself, the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. If this raised Jesus is ours now, then because of His incarnation, all who are in Christ have all that the Jews had but more. For Jesus brought to greater fulfillment all of the blessings that are contained in this list. We have received a rich inheritance…all of these blessings but more.
The Christ – If we are in Christ, we have been given the Spirit of God and by Him we cry, “Abba! Father!” (Romans 8:9-17). He is truly the inheritance of all inheritances! The Spirit of God living in His people…
The Adoption-We are no longer slaves to sin but adopted into God’s family (Romans 8:14-17). And this family is not only in Israel but has spread all over the world and continues to grow!
The Law -Jesus has followed the law perfectly and His life is counted as ours. We no longer have to strive to fulfill the law.
The Glory and Worship – Perhaps the glory mentioned here is the glory of the tabernacle and temple. If so…Christ has opened the door to us experiencing this glory as well. We can approach the throne of grace in confidence and worship Him any time anywhere in Spirit and in truth.
The Covenants – The Mosaic covenant, made with Israel and constantly broken due to Israel’s sin, was replaced with the new covenant, which provides total and complete atonement for all of the sins of God’s people.
The Promises – The promises made to Israel were for all of God’s people – then and now. And all of His promises are Yes in Christ (2 Corinthians 1:18-20).
Christ Himself and all of these blessings that come with Him are yours now. The ultimate Gift to us at Christmas and always.
Will you resolve with me today not to be disappointed with Christmas this year? No matter happens with family, friends, gifts, schedules or stress? Because there is no disappointment in Christ – the true purpose of all of our Christmas celebrating!
To do right now: Meditate on the verse above. Would you write a Christmas card to Jesus today telling Him your desire this Christmas (and always) to be fully satisfied in His gift of Himself? Or just jot down some thankful thoughts on these passages. Listen to the song O Come All Ye Faithful.
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