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LOVE CAME DOWN – Second Advent Sunday
As I sought inspiration for a message on love, the words “love came down” kept coming to me. They made me think of a sermon I recently heard from “Your Move with Andy Stanley” where he talked about how Jesus came down to us. While the rest of the world was trying to make its way up, Jesus came down. Thinking about that in terms of Christmas, it occurred to me that Jesus didn’t just “come” down. He was sent.
Jesus, God’s only Son, who was the Word, who was with God from the Beginning (John 1:1), was sent to us. He was sent by God, our Heavenly Father. Why would God send His only son to us? The reason was because God LOVED us. In Jesus was life and light to overcome darkness. We were sinners in need of a savior. Instead of judging us in condemnation, God loved us enough to redeem us with the saving grace of Jesus, the Christ (the anointed One).
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.” – John 3:16-18
This powerful Savior did not come through earthly royalty, and was not born into a “high” place among men. He was born to a poor couple from Nazareth, and birthed in a stable in Bethlehem. A manger was used for his crib. He was not dressed in fine baby attire, but wrapped in cloths to swaddle him. Jesus entered the world humbly, not royally. Yes, Love came down.
I had a conversation recently with a foreign exchange student. In response to questions I asked as we got acquainted, she said she was surprised by how Americans tend to be so much about self – seeking to serve own needs, promote themselves. A friend shared that she had a similar conversation with someone visiting America. That person observed America’s need to have and acquire – money, material things, status, etc. Just as in Jesus’ time, we are trying to make our way up. If our sights are set in the wrong direction, we will miss the gift of Love God wants to share with us.
As we light the Candle of Love for Advent, let us remember that Love came down, sent to us by God, our Father. This was an amazing act of love, for God knew Jesus’ life would not be easy, and that His beloved Son would be rejected and forced to endure terrible treatment from the very people God longed to save. Jesus, also, displayed great love for humanity as he endured the agony of dying on the cross as the atoning sacrifice for all our sins; and then, as He promised, He rose again and proved that in Him is eternal life.
As stated in John 3:16-18, Love came down, not to condemn, but to save.
“This is love; not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” – 1 John 4:10 (NIV)
We will find the Christ child in a lowly manger, not high upon a worldly throne. Let us humble ourselves before Him, for Love came down, and it is only by His grace that we will one day be raised up.
“Praise him, all you people of the earth, for he loves us with unfailing love; the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever. Praise the Lord!” – Psalm 117 (NLT)
Renee Myers 12-2-15