Bethlehem’s Babe Exalted
by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam
The Bible accounts of the birth of Christ are touching indeed. The angelic announcements, the virgin with child, deeply embarrassed, yet highly honored; the holy Babe in a stable because there was no room in the inn, wrapped in swaddling bands and laid in a manger; the night suddenly turned to day, the multitude of the heavenly host praising God!
Surely it is fitting that we remember all this and celebrate it, especially since our Lord thus humbled Himself that He might die for our sins. Yet here we must be careful not to be led astray, lest we know Him only as a sweet babe in a manger rather than as the mighty Savior that He is. As Americans we celebrate the birthdays of great men, but we do not emphasize their babyhood! We rather honor them for what they have accomplished, rejoicing that such men were born into the world.
Our Lord is no longer a babe and He does not wish to be thought of as a babe, but rather as the One who, having died for our sins at Calvary, now lives to dispense to a world of lost sinners the riches of His grace.
It was from His glory in heaven that He revealed Himself to St. Paul and instructed him to write: “Henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we Him [so] no more” (II Cor. 5:16).
And again in Hebrews 2:8,9, the Apostle declares: “Now we see not yet all things put under him, but we see Jesus…. crowned with glory and honor” as the One who “tasted death for every man.”
It is wonderful to remember our Lord as the Babe born at Bethlehem, but still more wonderful to know Him now as the One who is “able to save unto the uttermost all them that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make inter- cession for them” (Heb. 7:25).