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Christmas is all about the pressies!

December 25, 2011

There is so much I love about Christmas time, but if I had to say what I love the most it’s definitely the presents. Not so much the receiving (although that’s great fun) but the giving of them – the look of happiness and surprise in the faces of those I love is by far the best feeling.

Now I’ve always said there are 2 types of present you get at Christmas. You get the presents you want; things like DVD’s, CD’s or whatever else tickles your fancy, and then you get the presents you need; like new pants or toothpaste, and other such extravaganza that my mum always used to get me.

Believe it or not; Jesus actually came as both, He comes as a practical answer to fix all our needs, but He is so good that He also satisfies all our wants.

So what does the bible tell us about Jesus? – Well the bible is stuffed with information about Jesus from Genesis to Revelation (we can look more into this in 2012!) but I wanted to look specifically at the three gifts that the baby Jesus was given by the wise men. I’m sure you know the story well. Jesus was given gold, frankincense and myrrh. But I wonder if you’ve ever asked yourself why? Well I think the bible tells us lots about this Jesus by just looking at what gifts he was given.

Gold

Gold is synonymous with wealth and significance. Typically speaking if you have gold you’re considered important or wealthy. This tells us that Jesus is hugely significant; the bible tells us He is the King of all Kings. The book of Philippians (bible) tells us that He left infinite glory behind to become a man – something we think of a lot at Christmas time. Gold is also considered very precious – but its worth is nothing compared to that of Jesus.

Frankincense

If you lived at the time of Jesus you would probably have understood the significance of this gift. Frankincense was incense used in the temple by the High Priest in offering sacrifices to God. The book of Hebrews (bible) tells us that Jesus came as our great High Priest to mediate on our behalf. He offered Himself as our sacrifice; once and for all.

Myrrh

This is probably the strangest gift you would expect to be given to a new-born. Mary and Joseph may have grasped the significance of the first two, but this one was sure to throw them. Myrrh is a perfuming agent used to cover up the stench of dead bodies. It’s a bit like someone coming to your baby shower with a tombstone and what’s worse it’s got your kids name on it – it’s just a little inappropriate.

The thing is the gift of Myrrh has lots to tell us about Jesus. Gold told us that He was someone of huge significance and worth; frankincense told us that He came as our great High Priest to offer Himself as a sacrifice. Myrrh shows us that He came to achieve this by dying in our place.

The gospels remind us that He came to seek and save that which was lost. In fact just like Myrrh, his perfect sacrifice covers up our sinful stench. He replaces our arrogant odour with the most beautiful of fragrances – perfect obedience and perfect worship.

What’s most astonishing about this was God’s attitude in giving this gift. I stated at the beginning of this blog that the thing I love most about Christmas is being the one who gets to give presents to those I love. The bible tells us that Jesus endured the shame of the cross for the joy that was set before Him. A well known Hymn, when talking of Jesus, also tells us the following:

“…on the cross my burden gladly bearing, he bled and died to take away my sin.”

God was glad to give us this costly gift – no gritted teeth here – just pure and undiluted delight.

Jesus came to meet a very urgent and practical need. I want to finish this blog on this most joyous of days by encouraging you to let Jesus meet not just your practical needs but also to let Him satisfy all your deepest desires – after all He’s the only one who can!

Merry Christmas Everyone!

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