2023 Advent Devotional - Luke 2:15-16 (Day 24)

Luke 2:15-16 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger.                                                                        

Do you think the shepherds could have grasped this mystery of what God had set in motion?

Whatever they understood, they definitely understood the urgency!  The shepherds response to their heavenly message is just awesome.  They get up and run.  They fully believed that they will see this thing they have been told about.

When we see the shepherds here in Luke's gospel, may we remember to get up and run when we hear God's call, and respond rightly to the good news of salvation.  It is the only response that makes sense!  But it is possible to miss the invitation to come and see Jesus.  The shepherds teach us that responding rightly to a heavenly invitation means to respond right away.  We can't allow our fear or our to-do list, our shopping, baking or merrymaking to delay or distract us.  Don't miss Jesus by being 'great' at Christmas.  Instead, ask for the simple faith of these shepherds - look up, listen, and run.

Go! Tell it on the mountain that Jesus Christ is born!

The shepherds didn't need to run all over Bethlehem.  They knew what they were looking for and they likely knew where to find him.  You see, the shepherds would not have missed the sign the angels told them about - a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.  Bethlehem was only a few miles from Jerusalem.  Most of its sheep were destined for temple sacrifice and stayed out in the fields.  The shepherds brought the ewes into the stables or caves at night to give birth.  For those lambs to be fit for Passover sacrifice they had to be without a single blemish, so they were swaddled to keep from injuring themselves.  The sign of the swaddling cloths around a baby in a manger carried this clear powerful message: This baby, this Passover lamb, has come to take away the sin of the world.

The birth of Jesus contains plot twists and contrasts like no other.  The story is one no human could make up -  a King born in a barn, God in humble human flesh, the turning point of all of history first witnessed by a few lowly farm hands, a baby King that came to die for the life of the whole world.  This story leaves Santa in the dust.  Now, get up and run! - by Stacia Eversole
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1 Comment

Linda Cox - December 24th, 2023 at 6:41am

On this Eve of Christ's birth, this devotion really spoke to my heart! Each year at Christmas we get closer to losing the magnitude of Christ in the season. The real reason we get up every day and walk or run by HIs Grace. Oh my goodness, with these beautiful devotions from the office staff at AIC this Advent Season, how can we miss the hearts call to follow HIS Kingdom, HIS Purpose, HIS desire for hope, peace, joy & love. Thank you all.