Incarnation

How did God fulfill his promises to Israel and the world?

She will give birth to a son, and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins. Matthew 1:21

For I say that Christ became a servant of the circumcised on behalf of God’s truth, to confirm the promises to the fathers, and so that Gentiles may glorify God for his mercy. As it is written,
Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles,
and I will sing praise to your name. Romans 15:8-9

Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, because it is written, Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree. The purpose was that the blessing of Abraham would come to the Gentiles by Christ Jesus, so that we could receive the promised Spirit through faith. Galatians 3:13-14

For every one of God’s promises is “Yes” in him. Therefore, through him we also say “Amen” to the glory of God. 2 Corinthians 1:20

God sent his Son, Jesus of Nazareth, to rescue Israel and the world from the power of sin and death.

Most religions are about how to get to—or how to be good enough for—God; or how to become a better person. And while we can all agree that, in one form or another, our world is a mess, many people think that if they’re ever going to get to God, they’ve just got to rise up out of the mess on their own while God watches.

It’s true, the world is a mess. And, yes, the goal is to be in relationship with God. But here’s the plot twist: we don’t have to get to God. God put on flesh and blood and came to us—fully God and fully human in the form of Jesus. That’s the startling message of the Christian faith. God rescues us from this mess. We do not have to rescue ourselves.

And through it all, this rescue—this incarnation of God—is evidence of God’s faithfulness to his promises to Israel. God promised to bless Israel and to bless the world through Israel. When sin broke their relationship, God sent Jesus to overcome the power of sin and death and to restore, redeem, and renew our salvation. Jesus fulfilled God’s faithfulness to his covenant with Israel, the covenant designed to rescue the world. The covenant to rescue us.

But this is the most important point of all: wherever we find ourselves; however we find ourselves; whatever mess we’re in: we are not alone. We are not abandoned. God himself can and will come to rescue us. That’s the great hope of the Christian faith.

Spend some time today reflecting on the good news that God has come to us in the person of his Son, Jesus. Consider what that shows about the character and nature of God and his incredible love for you.

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