Before and After
When the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law -Galatians 4:4–5.
My wife, Marlene, and I enjoy watching home improvement programs. We love learning from the experts as they transform a tired living space into something new and remarkable. But there’s a catch to all that learning: we have to understand the before of that old house before we can appreciate what leads to the after.
In infinitely more important ways, this reality applies to the Christmas story. When we tell the story, we tend to start “too late.” We celebrate the arrival of the baby Jesus—which is wonderful,—but we forget He had to leave His home to come to ours. We don’t reflect in wonder on the before—what He gave up. The eternal Son of God left the Father’s presence to become that helpless baby.
In Galatians 4:4–5, we read, “But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law.” The keyword here is sent. Jesus was sent here from somewhere else—a somewhere in which He’d lived for all eternity past. That He would leave that place and come to this place is one measure of how deeply we’re loved. And that’s the love we celebrate as we remember the birth of the eternal One in human form.
What do you picture when you think of what Jesus gave up to come to our planet? Why do you think He did it?
Jesus, we can’t thank You enough for choosing to visit Your creatures in the form of a human baby. Help us never to forget the scope of Your love for us.