Christmas (2004)

Sermon notes from the Feast of the Nativity of Christ (2004)

In the beginning God said: “Let there be light.”

God speaks (His Word) and the visible (Light) comes into existence.

God’s spoken Word can be seen, allows us to see, makes sight possible.

Even before anything else existed, even before anything was to be seen, God speaks light into existence.    The Light of God existed before there was anything to shine on – to be seen.   Even before anyone else was there to see, God’s light existed, and the ability to see pre-existed before any humans were there to see.

And today as we celebrate Christmas, we celebrate the feast of the Word of God becoming flesh – that is how John in his Gospel describes the birth of Christ.

Again God’s spoken Word, just like in the beginning, at creation,  is made to be seen, is Light.

God’s Word is that which is to be seen, allows us to see, makes sight possible

God’s Word allows us to see and know God, and makes visible that which before was before invisible.   For in Christmas we  begin to see that God is Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Christmas is more than the sentimental story of a baby being born into poverty.

It is symbolically the same story of God saying “Let there be light”

It is in reality the story of the Word becoming visible, incarnate, physical, flesh.

It is God speaking the Word into visible existence, or the visible itself  into existence.

Our God does not put us either into non-existence or into darkness.

God is the giver of life and light, of light and existence, not of darkness or non-existence.

God spoke into the non-existence and said “Let there be light” and the Word became flesh.  God speaks us into being, and overcomes the darkness, and gives us the light which knows no end.

God speaks at the beginning of creation and light comes into existence, but that isn’t enough for God, for not only does He will light into existence, He wills that His Word, His Light become flesh. The spiritual, life itself becomes increasingly incarnate and manifest, light becoming increasingly physical and human. Jesus Christ is the light of evening, the Light of the World, He is both Light and Life, and we see in Him God’s plan, will, and intention. 

God’s Word evolves from Light, to life, to human flesh. And in this we understand, the Light of God is not opposed to being human, but is its intention and destiny: God’s will and plan. God’s Word is not opposed to the flesh, but becomes incarnate – the Word becoming the flesh, and the flesh revealing the Word.

Christ is who and what God intended and intends for each of us to be.

God took on human nature – became enfleshed, incarnate so that humanity could be again united to God.    Light became flesh so that God would always be visible to us. 

The Word becomes flesh so that we might be able to see God not just with the eyes of our hearts but with the eyes of our flesh. So that we can once again see what God spoke from the beginning – the Light He called into being before there was any sun or stars. In Christ we can see that Light once again.

This is why the greeting “Christ is born!” contains such a powerful message.   We are affirming our conviction that God has indeed entered the world, entered the darkness in order to give us light and life.

One small aside – today we also remember the Magi who came to see the newborn Christ child.  These wise men use the physical light (the star) in order to search for and find the Spiritual light, which God spoke into existence on the first day of creation.

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