Where’s the Line to See Jesus?
And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. (Luke 2:15-17)
TO LEARN THE MOST ABOUT CHRISTMAS, we study the prophecies, the people, and the proclamations of “The Greatest Story Ever Told.” Many of the “traditions of Christmas,” yes, and of the Christmas celebration itself, were formed over a long period of time and have taken on their own peculiar shapes. Some of them are good and some are, well, not so good.
I’m not happy about the almost universal combining of the visit of the shepherds and the visit of the Magi (the Wise Men) on the same night. (The Magi visited Jesus several months later after Joseph and Mary and the baby Jesus were living in a house, not a stable.)
When they had heard the king (Herod), they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. (Mat 2:9-11)
THIS INFORMATION SHOULD BE COMBINED with the infamous decree of King Herod to kill all the boy-babies in and around the little town of Bethlehem. Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men. (Matthew 2:16)
IN THE SCRIPTURAL ACCOUNTS of who visited Jesus at His birth, we first have only the uneducated and unwashed shepherds who were chosen by God to know about Him. The angel did not direct the shepherds to go see the baby-Jesus. That’s important, I think. The angels said: “Ye shall find the babe…” That’s it. There is no command for the shepherds to go find the baby. They talked it over among themselves and collectively decided they should go find this baby the angel (and then angels) were talking about. God’s contact with the Magi was at a time that would “enter” the Magi onto the stage later in Bethlehem.
The angel talked to the shepherds about a baby in a manger (a strange place for a baby to be, even in that primitive culture). God’s stirring of the hearts of the Magi in far-away Babylon or Persia (Iraq or Iran) was focused on the stars. Could there be any greater difference in the kind of people God contacted and the subject of their attention? Look at the baby and look at the stars!
It’s like somebody getting saved today by reading he book of Proverbs. And yet, people today have been brought under conviction and brought to repentance by reading the book of Proverbs. I read of that recently. In the New Testament, the Book of James is called: “The Proverbs of the New Testament.” Why didn’t James dwell on the plan of salvation in the book by his name? And yet, James was the powerful prayer warrior who was nicknamed: “Camel-knee James” because he prayed so much on his knees they were calloused like the knees of a camel.
I don’t want to see James for a long time when I get to Heaven. He might ask me to show him my knees. So, I better not criticize him for not including the gospel in his New Testament book, the first book written in the New Testament. God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts and He thought it good to tell the lowest class, the shepherds, first about the birth of His Son. The Magi would get there, but not first. Very important, I think.
It’s because of this feature that I got in on being a witness for Him. I’m with the shepherds, not one of the Wise Men. I would be more at home riding a donkey than a camel. When I hear the donkey bray in the mornings in the field behind our house, I’m reminded that he’s in my class. Donkeys and mules, I’m at home with, but not with a camel. I qualify as weak, base, despised, and things which are not, and not as “the mighty.”
That’s the way God does things. Paul said: Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think anything as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; (2Corinthians 3:5) If a man ever thinks he can do it without God, he is ruined!
But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence. (1Corinthians 1:27-29)
So, where’s the line to see Jesus, today? I suppose it’s like it was when Jesus was born. There was no line to see Him; just the lowly shepherds, and then a handful of regal-minded men in a camel caravan. That’s all. When Jesus played in the streets with the other boys, they didn’t know they were playing games with God in the flesh. When Jesus’ brothers were bothered at times with the strangeness of their older brother in the home, they didn’t know they were troubled at the presence of God in their home. Mary and Joseph knew; but not his brothers. It was probably never discussed. Things unfolded one page at a time until “the fullness of time” brought about the identity of who this carpenter was.
Where’s the line to see Jesus? No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. (John 6:44)
Someone sent me a link to the song I’ve posted for today: “Where’s the Line to See Jesus?” I don’t know the singer, Becky Kelly, and I had never heard the song before today. She is dressed modestly and appears to be serious about what she is singing. That’s all I know. My favorite musical forms run from bluegrass I was raised on, to Handel’s Messiah.
Some of the other musical forms are not my favorites but sometimes carry a message that penetrates. A little boy in a shopping mall asks the singer: “Where’s the line to see the Jesus?” THAT PENETRATES! And, that…. touches my heart. See what you think. Ω
Read Through the Bible in a Year
DECEMBER 26, 2017 - TUESDAY
A.M. Zechariah 1-3 P.M. Revelation 17
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A Good Verse to Memorize:
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. (Luke 2:13-14)
Song for Today:
Where’s the Line to See Jesus? (3:50) (Becky Kelly)
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