When did the story of Jesus really begin? When the angel came to Mary? Elizabeth? Maybe in the prophecies of Isaiah (the suffering servant) or Micah (when it was predicted that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem)?
I know what you’re thinking. Surely it’s when the promise of the deliverer was first given. Genesis 3:15, “He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” Yay! A deliverer was promised IMMEDIATELY after the fall!
But even that isn’t when Emmanuel’s story begins…
Jesus’ story, which is really our story—the story of our deliverance from the shackles of sin and death—actually began even earlier than that. Look!
“Since you know that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain manner of life received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: Who was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you.” 1 Pet. 1:18-20 KJV2
“… the Lamb who was slain from the creation of the world.” Rev. 13:8 NIV
Before the foundation of the world? I don’t know about you, but this blows my mind! Before the foundation of the world, the Holy Trinity made a pact to send Jesus, the King of Kings, to a dirty stable, to live among us, to die, and rise again—so we could be in fellowship with him.
Our gracious Lord has loved us a long, long time. He thought of us, his children, before his voice broke through the darkness, creating light. Before the planets spun in space, before the molecules of life connected, before he even breathed life into our first father Adam.
So Emmanuel’s story starts before the beginning.
How this fills me with grateful love for him. How it makes me long to serve him.
(When we see a “therefore” in Scripture it often means it’s time for our response to the amazing story of what God has done for us.)
During the Christmas season, it’s easy to compare ourselves with others. She decorated her house better. He bought his kids more awesome gifts. Why wasn’t I invited to that party?
Let’s remember who we are and not fall into the pit of shame and self-loathing. Jesus came down from heaven to save you. Read that sentence again. Meditate on it! Live as a loved child, wanted, adopted, and sought after—not because you’re good enough, but because He’s good enough and his delight in you makes you delightful.
Have a blessed day and remember He loves you like there’s no tomorrow.
How will walking in this amazing truth change you today? I’d love to hear.