Jude, in his epistle, issues a challenge, a call. He appeals to readers to contend for the faith (Jude 3) or, to stay true to the message of Christ as originally proclaimed by the Lord’s apostles. As believers today, one application of his appeal throughout the book of Jude is...
During a recent dishwashing experience, something happened that I think may be a first in history. I got a bacon splinter!
You read that correctly. I tried using my hand to clear a rack that I use to cook bacon in the oven (picture a rack placed above a cookie sheet that allows the grease to drip onto the sheet). Suddenly, my cleaning and deep thinking were painfully interrupted. I looked at my finger and there it was. Hardened, dried bacon pierced and lodged into my finger.
We’ve all heard of splinters from wood, but bacon? I thought, “No one is going to believe this happened. This is just too unusual.” My wife laughed, but then we tried for about an hour trying to get it out, to no avail. So, I walked around with a piece of pork in my finger for a whole day.
Do you find all of this unusual? It definitely is! It is unusual, but not untrue. And this phrase carries some truth for Christianity. The world often says that the claims of Christianity are far too unusual, silly even. However, unusual does not equal untrue.
Here are some components of Christianity that are both unusual and true:
The Creator of Man Became a Man
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made… And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:1-3, 14)
How is that for unusual? The Creator of all things, including every human that has ever existed, took on the form of a human. The invisible God revealed Himself by clothing Himself in flesh like ours.
We live in a world that thinks that this is far too unusual to be true, yet God’s inerrant Word says, “when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman” (Galatians 4:4) and, “He was manifested in the flesh” (2 Timothy 3:16). This is all very unusual, but unusual does not equal untrue.
According to Philippians 2:6-8 Jesus Christ…
- Was in the form of God
- Emptied himself by taking on the form of a servant
- Was born in the likeness of men
- Was found in human form
At one time a man walked the earth who was 100% man AND 100% God? Yes! That is Jesus Christ. It is unusual for a man to—
- Live a completely sinless life (Hebrews 4:15)
- Claim to be pre-existent (John 8:58)
- Have the ability to permanently forgive sins (Mark 2:5-7)
- Teach that all of Scripture points to him (John 5:39; Luke 24:27)
- Walk on water (Matthew 14:22-33)
- Do so many signs, wonders, and divine deeds that there is not enough room on the planet to exhaustively document them (John 21:25)
Unusual, but not untrue! By God’s grace, I’m more confident that Jesus is God than I am confident that my name is Kyle Green.
The Creator of the Cosmos Came to Earth as a Baby
It gets even more unusual. Our Creator didn’t come to earth as an adult but as a baby.
The baby that Mary held in her arms in Bethlehem was the God who created her (Matthew 1:23). What do you think was going through Mary’s mind as she looked into his divine eyes? She was holding Jesus Christ, the God who spoke the world into existence (Colossians 1:15-20; Hebrews 11:3)!
Charles H. Spurgeon called Jesus “the infinite even while He was an infant.” Inspired by this line, I like to call Him the Infant from Infinity!
The Creator of Life Tasted Death for Us
It is unusual for someone like Jesus to die for someone like you and me. The innocent, sinless Creator of all life, died for His death-deserving enemies? The Sinless, dying for the sinner?
For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:6-8)
Jesus Christ tasted excruciating death that we may taste eternal life (Hebrews 2:9-10). The glory of this good news is so heavy that even holy angels long to look deeply into it (1 Peter 1:10-12).
Celebrating Christmas Every Day is Unusual
God came to earth to save us (Luke 19:10). He came miraculously as a baby. Yet, He didn’t come to be rocked and swaddled, but to providentially be betrayed, rejected, beaten, crucified, and raised from the dead (Luke 9:22).
He did that so that all who believe in Him may be rocked and swaddled in the love of the Father for all eternity. Those who have been saved by grace through faith in Christ can celebrate Christmas every day with great joy.
The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. (John 1:9-13)
Unusual, but not untrue.