Consider – before the Incarnation, God had not spoken to man (through the prophets) for over four hundred years! Selah
When God finally had something to say it centered on joy and a Person!
Even though this joy was for the whole wide world, joy happened in a small and ‘hidden’ way, consequently religion and the world didn’t know it and still don’t!
Look at these small ‘hidden’ joy-filled encounters involving the Incarnation story. Note Greek meaning elaborations included.
- Elizabeth shouted with clamorous screaming that was extremely boisterous with great emotion as she explained, upon hearing the sound of Mary’s voice, how her baby John in utero – leaped skipped, bounded with exuberant, wild, ecstatic, delightful joy! (Lk 1:39-45)
- Mary, while pregnant with Jesus, extolled that her spirit was experiencing a gladness that was jumping in celebration! (Lk 1:47)
- The angel, standing before the shepherds, reassuringly and excitedly declared – Don’t be afraid, I bring good news of great and large joy! It is a joy because of grace recognized. And this joyful news is for ALL the people!” (Lk 2:9,10)
- Then suddenly the sky filled with a multitude of heavenly host, who brought the message to conclusion – “peace to the earth and goodwill, happiness, favor, and delight in men”. (Lk 2:13,14)
- The Shepherds urgently went searching for the babe. Can you imagine their wide-eyed excitement and anticipatory joy at what they would find? Afterwards encountering, they spread abroad this joyful good news. Those who heard marveled and were astonished. Perhaps because it came from shepherds! (Lk 2:16-18)
- The Wise Men, after their arduous long-seeking journey, when they saw the star standing still to indicate where Jesus was, rejoiced with excessive, violent, extreme, great, loud, even fierce joy and delight. (Mt 2:9-10)
- The earth was given a declaration of peace – i.e. a sense of welfare, to tie together into a whole, God’s gift of wholeness. Imagine the joy with that kind of ‘togetherness’! (Lk 2:14)
Joy Is The Focus Not Sin
Please realize Jesus did not have to come, He wanted to come to restore truth. Jesus came to show us who the Father really is and who we really are. (Jn 14:9 2Tim 1:9)
God did not send His Son into the world to condemn it, but that the world be saved, preserved, rescued on account of His Son. (Jn 3:17)
God’s joy over us propelled Him to come and remove the emptiness of sin that was keeping us from real relationship with Him.
Sin literally means ‘without form, having no substance’. Truly when we sin there is no fullness in it. It leaves us formless and empty in the long run.
God hates that emptiness. He originally made us to enjoy His fullness. Jesus came to restore that fullness. That is why God was so happy when, after 400 years, the fullness of time had come to reveal His eternal joy over us and restore access to the fullness.
- At times it can seem God is nowhere to be found, all is silent, life seems hopeless. But joy is coming. He might surprise you in a humble hidden way. Be open to believe (be persuaded) and receive, just like Mary. (Lk 1:38)
- If you live in fear and guilt in your relationship with God, then know that is a religious relationship. Repent = change your religious mindset! Joy is a huge part of God’s kind of relationship. Ask for the real deal. He longs for you to have it.
- The Incarnation is huge – it means God enjoys our human ‘be-ing’. And God is not partial in His enjoyment. Consider – He made known to illiterate poor shepherds (the lowliest of people in that culture and time) something profound. In the darkness and quiet of the night He let them encounter the supernatural and hear heaven-resounding news that affected the whole wide world. The shepherds didn’t grasp it all. But, they were one little hidden way He expressed His value of all mankind.