Reflections on an Empty Manger

Updated on December 13, 2017
Source

One of the main reasons I enjoy Christmas is the poignant reminder it gives us of the greatest event in human history: the incarnation of Jesus Christ. While I realize He most likely was not born in December, the celebration of His coming to earth is important just the same. We need a time to stop and consider how great the Father's love truly is, that He would send His only begotten Son to a desperately needy planet. A favorite passage of mine, which I often read around Christmastime, is John 1:1-18. In this opening of the gospel book that bears his name, John dwells on the wonder of how the "Word became flesh and dwelt among us". The Son of God humbling Himself to become a human, yet in His humility bringing with Him the life and light that only He can give. The Word who spoke everything into being, dwelling in the midst of His creation alongside His creatures. The Holy Spirit-inspired words penned by John never fail to stir me to awe and gratitude as I consider them. There is no one like Jesus. As spoken by Isaiah, He is "Immanuel" (God with us), a Saviour willing to come and offer Himself up as a sacrifice, and at the hands of the very ones He came to deliver.

Anyone May Come

How awesome is the King who came as one of the lowly, and was worshiped by shepherds and magi alike. Even the accounts of those who came to worship Him paint a beautiful picture of who He is. The shepherds coming to worship the Great Shepherd. The wise men coming to worship the Giver of all wisdom and truth. The small and great alike came before Him in adoration. In the same way now He still receives anyone who will come to Him, whether they are "somebody" in the eyes of the world or not. For "as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God, even to those who believe in His name".

The Adoration of the Magi by Jan de Bray
The Adoration of the Magi by Jan de Bray | Source

A Work Completed

One of the greatest things about the story of Jesus' birth, however, is the reality that He did not remain a baby. Just as later on in His life the tomb was declared to be empty with the words "He is not here, but He has risen", I can also joyfully declare that the manger is empty. The Son of God come in the flesh fulfilled the reasons for His coming. Jesus grew into a man and walked among us, sharing in the joys, temptations, and trials that come with being human, yet was without the sin that so easily besets the rest of us. He ministered to the least of these, showing us the Father as only He could. Then, at the appointed time, He willingly took up the sin of the world and died the death that we deserve. Having made this perfect, acceptable sacrifice before God, He then completed His mission through His resurrection and ascension to the Father. The babe in the stable, the God-man, is now both Lord and Messiah, and He shall reign forever. Hallelujah! The manger is empty!


(All Scripture quoted is from the NASB)

Questions & Answers

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      No comments yet.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, letterpile.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://letterpile.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)