Day 60: The Way Of The Warrior - The Warrior's Journey®

Day 60: The Way Of The Warrior

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The Way Of The Warrior

For the Christmas season, we’re going to focus on why Jesus had to be born.  What is the reasoning behind this event, that Christ had to leave Heaven, to be born in a barn, then harassed, maligned, insulted, then willingly dying…for you and me?  Heaven’s kinda nice, why enter this troublesome world?  Why did Messiah have to be born in Bethlehem, and not among the famous and powerful?  Wouldn’t Jesus have more impact in the world, by being among the sophisticated and cultural elites?

That’s not the way God thinks.  A more powerful history would come for the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, arising from the poor and down-trodden.  God the Father, will let his only Son, go through humble conditions, agonizing death, proving that purity can come out of challenging circumstances.  Jesus’ character will transcend harsh and difficult circumstances, so he went through the crucible of testing, to prove to us, he had the character to be worthy of our worship.

And why did he have to be born in Bethlehem?  What was so special about that itsy-bitsy town in the boonies?  If we begin with the answer to this question, we’ll open vistas of understanding.

The Bible tells us in the Old Testament, that God would send his son into the World.  It was not a secret, and he delivered hundreds of predictions about the Messiah.  There were over 300 specific prophecies about Jesus coming to Earth.  There are more than double that number concerning his second coming – yeah, he’s coming back.  If the first appearance was real, guess what, so will the second. So Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him. (Heb. 9:28)

His first coming was for salvation, his second coming, we will rule with him. (Rev 2:26; 3:21).  Let that percolate in the old noggin’ for a while.  His first coming gives concrete evidence that the Bible is reliable, and he is trustworthy.  So, why Bethlehem?  Why not some of the great ancient cities like Alexandria, or Athens?

The Old Testament tells everyone where Messiah will be born.  Between 750-700 B.C. Micah the prophet said: But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth [born] for me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose coming forth is from of old, from ancient days. (Mic. 5:2).  Your head should have exploded there.  Some person who is eternal, shall be born in Bethlehem.  Oh, by the way, there were two Bethlehems, and Micah got the right one!

Not only was there Scripture telling the ancients where Messiah would be born.  God also added to that, the language of Creation. Huh?  Remember the Wise Men, the Magi?  They got the message because they saw something in the cosmos – a Star. Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” (Matt. 2:1, 2).  Wait a minute.  God gives information besides the Bible?  Sometimes.  This isn’t weird, it doesn’t happen often, but the Lord has revealed spiritual truth through different means.

But what about: So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. (Rom. 10:17).  Paul settles the matter, right?  Just the Bible.  Well, not only – watch. But I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have, for “Their voice has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.” (Rom. 10:18).  Paul quotes Psalm 19 which says: The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. (Ps. 19:1). Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. (Ps. 19:2). There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard. (Ps. 19:3) Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. (Ps. 19:4).  Stellar heavens can reveal truth.

So the Lord uses heavenly means to send a message to people who do not have the Bible.  The Magi had clear unambiguous information about a savior being born, and they travel a long arduous, dangerous journey following a unique event, to a unique person, born in a unique place, in a unique way – a virgin birth.  These events are so startling, that the historic narrative should not be dismissed.

Okay, so maybe this was just a convergence of some unusual events.  First a prophecy 700 years before he was born, then a star leading people to him.  But the Lord has more up his sleeve revealing more information pointing to this birth, as miraculous.

The Old Testament ends with its final words about child rearing. “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet…And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers (Malachi 4:5, 6).  The New Testament begins about the influence of a child being born.  His genealogy begins: The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. (Matt. 1:1).  Matthew’s book is about Jesus coming from the line of David, who was the great King of the Jews, and from Abram, the father of the Jews.  As a Jew, you could not have greater credentials, than from these two giants of faith.

But there is a startling departure in Jesus’ genealogy.  Five women appear: Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and then of course Mary.  This is extraordinary, for a Hebrew lineage.  Usually, just men and sons are listed, but these women add a dimension to Jesus’ heritage that will give you a new insight to the mind of God. Why did the Lord include them?

Of course, women are not second class to men.  They are equal in the mind of God: There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Gal. 3:28).  None-the-less their appearance points to an unusual truth that the Lord wants you to understand. All these women, separated by 1,500 years are important to Jesus’ birth – not just the lineage, but their lives point to information we should know.  These five women, and their lives give clues to…Bethlehem.

The Lord introduces intriguing insights from the lives of these women, that point into the future about Jesus Christ.  Their lives add a measure of information, that on the surface gets lost.  But if we dig deep, we’ll see startling truth revealed by their lives.  Stay tuned for some fascinating insights.  God is so cool.

The Warrior’s Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father,

What a monumental event in human history, sending your Son, to invade human history, willing to die for us, for our failures and faults.  Out of love you left the challenge of mankind’s sin be resolved by your kindness and love for us.  It really is a remarkable display of your goodness, that though we have failed, you came streaking into our lives to assure us that you care for our well-being, after we disregarded your well-being.  I shake my head at my own naivete and depravity, but am grateful that out of your compassion, you allow me to advocate for others, by merely pointing them to you.  Help me appreciate you more and more, and let my gratitude be witnessed by many.

Add to my appreciation of you, a measure of maturity and wisdom, that will enhance my character, for your glory.  I want others to see you in new and exciting ways.  I want them to dismiss their old ways of thinking of you as a myth, and accept you as a reality.  If I can help, release me to encourage them to get a glimpse of your majesty, to come into a deeper and more satisfying relationship with you.  Let their old thoughts about you, be reformed to an understanding of one so wonderful and gloriously good, that they question how they did without you for so long.  Then let them fall into a deep satisfaction of your goodness in spite of their circumstances.  Let them experience you in more ways than just intellect.  Let them have total satisfaction in you as their Lord, desiring nothing other than you.  Fill them up with your goodness.  I pray this in Jesus name.  Amen.

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