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Christmas Curiosity

When the Christmas presents start to pile up beneath the tree, some people are very curious, trying to guess what’s in the pretty boxes. They lift a package and shake it, trying to figure out what it might be. My curiosity isn’t aroused by all of those gifts in pretty paper and bows. I’m just awestruck by the beauty of it all.

Here are some things I am curious about, though. Why did each of the authors of the four gospels record a different aspect of the incarnation? Matthew told about the wise men (Matthew 2:1-12). He says they came from the east. But that includes a lot of territory. What nationality were they? Dispersed Jews in a foreign country? Or maybe Arabs from a nearby nation? How many wise men were there? Legend tells us three, but the Bible doesn’t say that. Just because there were three varieties of gifts {gold, frankincense and myrrh) doesn’t mean there were only three men. Mmmm. Curious.

Mark skips the details of the birth of Christ altogether and begins with Jesus’ baptism, which involved the Trinity – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Mark 1:9-11). That definitely speaks of the incarnation: God had come to dwell in a human body on earth.

Luke tells the account of the angels and shepherds (Luke 2:1-20). This is probably everyone’s favorite part of the story. We have lowly shepherds on the hillside, the  appearance of the heavenly hosts, the worshipful gathering at the manger in the stable, and the spreading of the good news of the Savior’s birth. It doesn’t get any more picturesque than that. It arouses my curiosity, for sure. I can’t imagine what it was like for God to become a helpless baby.

John gives an eternal perspective by declaring that Jesus existed from the beginning (John 1:1-14). Verse 14 says, “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” How incredible! Was John painting the bigger picture of Christ’s earthly entrance? The all inclusive account of the purpose of God?

We can only get the whole account by reading all of the gospel writers. I wish they had told us more. But who am I to question God and His word? My curiosity just gets the best of me sometimes, and I like to speculate as to what Christ’s birth was like. That gives me the real, human perspective I need in order to appreciate it all.

What do you wonder about? Do you take time during this season to mull over all the information we have? Does it astound you? Amaze you? Draw you into the spirit of Christmas in a way that makes the experience real? Why not start today?

DJK

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