Christmas, it’s more than the nativity.

Every adult child has that one Christmas present that they remember the most. I got mine the Christmas of 1992. It was a 1:4 model kit for a V6 Turbo Engine.
 
My parents had an ulterior motive for giving me this gift. I was taking my first 7th-grade shop class. In shop, we were learning about the internal combustion engine, and I had become fascinated and that is a dangerous thing for me. My inclination has always been to get stuck on things in which I become interested. If there is some sort of attention disorder that is like A-D-D and O-C-D all rolled into one, then I have it.
 
Long story short, prior to getting the model for Christmas, I had completely dismantled our family’s push mower. After attempting to reassemble it, there were a plethora of parts left over. My dad was furious. He did not understand that I was just wanting to see the inner-workings of an engine for myself, that the pictures in my textbook were not satisfying my curiosity. I wanted to study the pistons, valves, and cylinders in three dimensions. Getting me the model for Christmas probably saved all the small engines in our garage from utter destruction.
 
I was fascinated with my gift. As I assembled the model, I got to see all the parts and how they fit and work together. Once assembled, it also had a handle that I could crank that turned the crankshaft and put all the parts in motion. The model engine block was see-through plastic so that I could see the pistons moving through the four cycles, intake-combustion-power-exhaust, and I could see the lifters pushing the valves in and out. At last, my curiosity was satisfied because I had an exact interactive copy of the object of my interest.
 
I think about my model V6 engine when I think about what the Father did for us in sending His son. The earth receiving that baby boy into the world was much like me receiving that model. Prior to His arrival, the only way one could know God was through creation and the Old Testament. However, creation and the Old Testament was a revelation that was incomplete, disjointed, and difficult to grasp. Hebrews 1:2-3 teaches us that “in these last days,” that is now at just the right time, God the Father sent His son who is “the exact imprint of His nature.”
 
Just like my model kit served to satisfy my search for a revelation to the mystery of the inner workings of the internal combustion engine, so also Jesus reveals to perfection the mystery of who God is. No one had ever seen the glory of God, but Jesus was the manifestation of “the radiance of His glory.” He was God in flesh, one whom human beings could see, interact with, and talk to. Through His creation and what He spoke through the Old Testament prophets, mankind could know Him in part, but now through Jesus, man could know Him intimately and as completely as a fallen human can know God.
 
Friends, this is the beauty of Christmas. It is more than an angel visiting a virgin. It is more than a baby being born in a manger. It is more than the visits from the shepherds and wise men. Christmas is about all of those events, but the most important event in the Christmas story is the incarnation.
 
Jesus, who “is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of His nature” and who “upholds the universe by the word of His power,” (Hebrews 1:3) took on flesh and walked among us. Men and women touched Him. They heard His teaching. They saw His miracles, and as such, they came to know Him and behold “His glory as the only son from God the Father” (John 1:14).

 

He died on the cross to make purifications for sins; He was raised from the dead, and today He lives. He lives today, still radiating the glory of God into the hearts of men and women awakening them to salvation. He lives still today, serving as our advocate before the Father. He lives today, upholding the universe by the power of His word. This is our cause for celebrating His glorious birth.