Christmas morning. What a glorious day. Not literally, its cloudy and overcast. But spiritually it’s a day of rejoicing. Before the first Christmas the world was without hope. Sin reigned unchecked in the lives of all people, enslaving them into perpetual sorrow and eternal ruin. Death loomed over mankind without mercy, taking whom he willed when he willed. Before Christmas the grave opened its jaws with a fervent greed, believing that every soul consumed was forever lost. Darkness and evil rode upon the clouds causing the winds of despair to prevail in the hearts of men.
But then it happened. A baby was born. Not just any baby. The Son of God. The eternal Son of God. Let that sink in. He who is the eternal One, the everlasting God disrobed himself of his glory and clothed himself with flesh. The creator of all things now lay in a feed trough surrounded by poor parents and farm animals. The angels saw it and marveled. They rejoiced with an exceedingly great joy. The wise men discovered the birth and found him. They too rejoiced with unrelenting joy. Shepherds were told of the marvel, and they went and told all in whom they came in contact with.
On that morning hope dawned in the world. It was at first a faint flicker against the thick darkness of the world. But the darkness saw it and feared. God’s light was not to be seen in the realm of darkness and death. In desperation the darkness sought to shroud the light in death. The voices of the male children cried out from their graves. Mary and Joseph fled far away to save their lives. The darkness smiled. In its arrogance, it thought the light had been put out.
Silence. There was no hint of the light for another thirty years. The darkness was trampling upon the sons of men. Death, despair, fear, hatred, enmity, and strife continued unabated. The darkness was pleased. But then it happened. A miracle occurred. Light sang out into the darkness. It was a loud, piercing sound. It shook the gates of hell to its very foundations. The Son of God emerged. In the spiritual realm his glory was unveiled. The demons trembled. They begged him, “Do not torture us before the time!” They ran away from him in every direction, even hiding in the flesh of pigs to escape the piercing of his glory.
The Son of God marched in triumph over the powers of darkness. He raised the dead. He healed the sick, he gave sight to the blind. But then he did the unexpected. When the powers of darkness marshalled their army against him, he gave himself into their hands. They mocked him. They lied about him. They tortured him. And they finally killed him in the most humiliating and torturous way they could invent. The slow death of a cross.
He died. The glorious Son of God died on that cross. Hell sneered in victory. The darkness mocked. Evil’s greatest victory was won. Death eagerly embraced the Son of God. The grave enthusiastically opened its jaws. All was lost. The light was put out.
But only for a moment. Before the stench of death could set it, it happened. The light burst forth with an exploding power that death had never seen or experienced. It made every other light that ever shined look like a shadow by comparison. As this light rang out, it brought eternal ruin and devastation to the kingdom of darkness. Its foundations collapsed. Its gates fell. Its palaces crumbled. Its rulers ran away in fear. Death collapsed in despair. The grave was opened, the strength of its jaws broken.
The King of glory burst forth from the grave. He shined forth the light and life of the eternal God. He stood in victory over the enemy that was once so feared. Hope poured into the world. Love flowed from the light into any and all who would receive it.
And a door was opened.
The Father, he stood
Holding his arms to receive all who would
Come unto him broken by sin
To be free from death.
Eternal life for all who left
The world of despair, forever broken.
Guarantee, the Spirit our token
Now sons of God
Forever at rest.