1 Peter 1:10-11 “As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow.”
Christmas is a time for giving and receiving, and who doesn’t know this better than children? For weeks now youngsters have been dreaming about the packages they will find under the tree Christmas morning, and the hopes and expectations build as the day approaches.
I remember as a teenager my younger siblings tiptoeing into my room to wake me up early. Together we would sneak into the living room to peek under the tree. We would curl up and watch the lights twinkle and we would dream while waiting for the day to begin. That was one of my favorite parts of the special day, and it’s probably why you children could always get me up Christmas morning before Dad.
This natural tendency of eagerly waiting for gifts started many years ago. Throughout the Old Testament God inspired prophets to write about a gift that He would send to earth. Soon after Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden God promised that He would send a Savior to restore humanity to a right relationship with Him. The prophets foretold the birth of the Messiah and the suffering that He would endure. They spoke of details of this heavenly King that only the Father could reveal. They foreshadowed His love, His mission, and the new hearts all mankind would receive if they believed in Him.
These inspired men prophesied of the grace that would come to the world through Jesus Christ, but they did not fully understand all that the gift would offer or when it would come. They made careful searches and inquiries of Scripture seeking to figure out the Who, the what, and the when of the promised events, but that was only for God to know. Finally they realized that, though they would be beneficiaries of the gift, their prophecies would not be fulfilled until a future time.
Today we can look back on the birth of King Jesus and His death and resurrection. The grace of God has appeared, in the person of God’s Son, bringing salvation to all men who believe. This is what we celebrate at Christmas. Now we can look forward to the time when He comes in glory to fully claim His Kingdom.
You are all older now. Maybe the presents under the tree don’t bring as much anticipation as they did when you were little. But there is so much to look forward to. God’s gift of salvation has come to the world in power. His grace gives us what we need to live for Him every day. And someday soon He will gloriously return to earth as the rightful King and all will be made right in the world. Now, that’s something to eagerly wait for!