Thursday, December 3, 2009

Anticipating Christmas

An oft recurring theme in the New Testament is the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies in the life of Jesus. Indeed, Jesus said that the Old Testament spoke of him. Think for a minute what life would be like in a land without Christmas, without the coming of the Christ. Try to imagine yourself living before Christ came. Now, if you were an Israelite with some familiarity with the Hebrew Scriptures, you would know that God had promised to send a Messiah. You might not be entirely sure what kind of Messiah he would be, but you would have the hope that God would send someone from the lineage of King David to be a Deliverer. But if you were a Gentile you would likely know nothing of this hope. What would that be like?

One of the great Old Testament promises referred to in the New Testament is Psalm 2, a royal psalm. Scholars believe this psalm may have been used during the installation service of a new king in Israel. But the New Testament sees in this psalm a prophecy of the One King promised to come from David fulfilled in Jesus.

"As for me, I have set my King
on Zion, my holy hill.
I will tell of the decree:
The LORD said to me, 'You are my
today I have begotten you" (Ps 2:6--7, ESV).

In the coming of each of the Davidic kings the promise of the One King was carried forward. And even when the kingdom fell due to sin, the line of kings, the line of descendants from David remained unbroken until the coming of Jesus. In Jesus the promise of an everlasting kingdom and an everlasting King has been fulfilled. He is the King of kings and Lord of lords. Here is the good news of Christmas. The King has come. Take a stand. Spread the good word.

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