Devotional

Down From His Glory

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John 17:20-23

Struggling for the right words in my devotional prayer, suddenly a wonderful old song came to mind! It is the gospel in a nutshell. It is also very appropriate for Christmas time, although not generally known as a Christmas Carol. Down from His glory.

Ever living story,

My God and Saviour came,

And Jesus was His name!

Born in a manger,

To His own a stranger,

A man of sorrows, tears and agony.

There is so much theology (the study of God) in these words. Jesus is God. He gave up His glory in heaven to become a man; not just any man, but the One who fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy in His sufferings (Isaiah 53:3). His sufferings were not just physical, but were also emotional and spiritual. He was ridiculed and rejected by the people God called His chosen children, to whom He was sent. His death on the cross caused a morbid separation between Him and the Father; it was something like dividing soul and spirit of the man who was uniquely God-man! This separation was necessary in order to bring together God and mankind, whom He created for a unique fellowship.

The lyricist knew Jesus personally as “My God and Saviour”. God’s saving grace had drawn him into the family of God. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, it is possible for Gentiles to be adopted into God’s Holy family, when they believe and receive the Lordship of Christ (John 1:12-13). Down through centuries of time people have responded to this remarkable “condescension, bringing us redemption”. The Creator God “laid aside His splendor, stooping to woo, to win, to save my soul” according to the second verse of this incredible praise song!

The Christmas association comes with the reflection that this babe, “born in a manger, to His own a stranger” ….”took the form of man, revealed the hidden plan”. From the moment of creation, God knew mankind would be unable to cope with the great gift of choice. Having been made in the image of God we have a will. How often does your will and mine conflict with the will of our Heavenly Father? So God’s plan of creation included a plan of redemption, and here we see it: “all God’s fulness dwelleth in Him”. What does that mean?

Without reluctance, flesh and blood His substance, He took the form of man”. Paul wrote about this to the Philippian Church. “Christ Jesus Who being in very nature God….made Himself nothing, …..humbled Himself and became obedient unto death (Philippians 2:5-8). He died in your place and mine. “He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours (wrote the Jewish Apostle), but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:2). This is the glorious mystery revealed in the man Christ Jesus!

Reflection:

There will always be a response to the life of Christ. The lyricist wrote:

O how I love Him! How I adore Him!

My breath, my sunshine, my all in all!”

.and now I know Thou art the great “I AM.”

Sadly there are those who reject Jesus for innumerable reasons. Satan is quick to give any excuse for not following Him, this One who was born to die that man might live eternally with Him in heaven. This is “the reason for the season” is it not?

Remember Jesus’ prayer recorded by the Apostle John (17:20-23) “I have given them the glory that You gave me, that they may be one as we are one” (:22).

by Marilyn Daniels (MarilynDaniels.net)

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