Photo from Full of Eyes.
Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
“The Word became flesh and tabernacled among us.”
INI + AMEN.
God was born for you. He came from His Father for you. The Creator of the universe became a creature for you. The One who formed Adam from the dust of the ground, who built Eve from Adam’s side, is born. He has flesh and blood, just like you and me.
He did all the things a baby did. He nursed, He slept, and all the rest. He did all the things a toddler did. He learned to walk, to talk. He did everything tweens and teens and adults do. He “became flesh,” a human being. He got tired. He got hungry. He got thirsty. Just like you and me in every way, except one big difference: He didn’t sin.
That means, He did all those things for you. He was conceived and born sinless because you are conceived and born sinful. He was a sinless toddler, tween, teen, and adult, too. He never wandered off and got into trouble, never said things He shouldn’t have, never had lusts or sinful desires, never sinned in any way. He was tempted in every way just like us, but, unlike you and me, He lived a completely sinless life. But that’s not to say He didn’t have sins…
He had your sins. “He became flesh,” after all, to take on what’s sinful and broken and wrong with our flesh. Since He’s flesh, a human being, it means that His perfect life gets credited to your account. He comes with God’s love, favor, and kindness to save us. He dwells among to save us from sin, to rescue us from the devil, and to raise us from the dead. He is “full of grace and truth” for you.
It’s not some nice idea. Real flesh and blood Jesus. A Savior from your real flesh and blood sins—what you’ve done or failed to do for other flesh and blood people. He is born for those sins. He grows up for them. He dies for them. He rises for them. And all that He does—His good in place of your bad, His death in your place, His coming back to life, too—is all for you. And it’s really yours. You are “son of God” in Jesus. You’ve been “born not of the will of man but born of God” in Holy Baptism, “heir of eternal life.”
He still tabernacles among us, sets up shop among us. Not in sacrifices or temples, but still with His flesh and blood, though. His glory, His flesh and blood crucified and raised for you, is delivered to you. He is flesh of our flesh to make you flesh of His flesh, to unite you to Himself and to unite Himself to you really, truly, eternally. He wants to meet you, to dwell with you and within you, that you risen from the dead would live with Him forever. He would be one with you, and you with Him and His Father.
That’s probably the best gift you can ask for! And He doesn’t do it by wanting you to agree with some doctrinal point, or to drum up some right feeling, motivation, or preparation. He simply says, “Take, eat; this is My body; drink; this is My blood.” There He dwells within you and you in Him, and He will resurrect you on the Last Day. There He is our God. There we are His people, the sheep of His pasture. Bodied and blooded to Him, we are bodied and blooded together.
There’s no other way to get to God except through the Word made flesh. “No one has ever seen God, but the only God, who is at the Father’s side, He has made Him known.” Jesus is that “only God.” He makes God known to you. He comes to you, and He brings you back to His Father. Again, this isn’t some idea. “I agree, so it’s true.” No, you can only see God, hear God, encounter and meet God, and He only meets you in His Son Jesus. Outside of where Jesus is, there is no God.
“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us,” John tells us. Born of Mary, born in Bethlehem. Born for you. Real flesh and blood. For you. Lived a sinless life for you, in your place. Died in your place, too. Rose for you. Lives for you right now.
He still brings about His with you and within you, and you with Him and His Father forever. Because where Jesus is, flesh and blood is, there His Father and Spirit, too. Not ideas. Where His flesh is, there Jesus is FOR YOU “The Word became flesh.” “Take, eat; this is My body given for you.” He dwells among us, with us, within us. That’s what He does. “Drink; this is My blood shed for you for the forgiveness of sins.” Merry Christmas, indeed!
INI + AMEN.