Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God. 1 John 5:1 (NIV) The mark of a genuine Christian is not a general faith in God, but a specific faith in Jesus. Many people think a general faith in God makes you a Christian; it doesn’t. Jesus...
“Behold, this child is appointed for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is opposed.” Luke 2:34
Jesus Christ has been appointed to bring the true attitude of your heart toward God out into the open.
He will lead to “the fall and rising of many.” This may mean that some will fall and others will rise, or it could be that people have to fall before they rise. Either way, there is both a warning and an encouragement in this verse.
One commentator says: “In order to fall, it must be assumed that a person is first standing. So these words mean that those who imagine themselves to be strong and high, who rely on their own merit and power, will come to woeful ruin and undoing, because in their pride they do not realize their own need and doom and do not take refuge in Christ.”
Yet the coming of Jesus Christ brings hope. It will lead to the rising of many. And in the rest of the New Testament, that word is used in relation to resurrection from the dead! There will be a great company of the redeemed.
He will also be “a sign that is opposed.” It is not surprising that Christ was and is a sign that is opposed. He came to his own, but his own received him not (John 1:11). The secular world hated him; the religious world hated him. He was despised and rejected by men. And Mary, who laid him in the manger, had to endure the agony of seeing him on the cross. This is the default response of people to Jesus, but the Holy Spirit changes hearts toward Christ.
What different responses to Christ do you observe from people around you?