Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Package Deal

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of
King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked,
“Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw
his star in the east and have come to worship him.”

-- Matthew 2: 1-2

For many folks, receiving and opening presents is the highlight of their Christmas morning. But giving to others is also satisfying—especially when the gift is significant or has a story behind it. So imagine how you would feel if you bought a particularly expensive gift while overseas, waited patiently while it passed through customs and then paid extra to ship it back home…and then later discovered that the recipient hadn’t even bothered to open the box!

God has also gone through extreme lengths to offer us a costly gift that we can never afford ourselves: total forgiveness of our sins and salvation through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ. But just like any other gift, this forgiveness and salvation is worthless unless we unwrap the package…and then accept it. That means:

  • Accepting it with gratitude (because we didn’t pay for it)
  • Accepting it with humility (because we could never afford it)
  • Accepting it with joy (because God chose us when we didn’t deserve it)
Christmas is getting close. But you don’t have to wait until December 25 to open a priceless gift that has your name written all over it. In fact, you can start untying the bows and shredding the wrapping paper…right now.
“In the Scriptures God says, ‘When the time came, I listened to you, and when you needed help, I came to save you,’” writes the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians. “That time has come. This is the day for you to be saved.”

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