Christmas Morning – Luke 2:1-20
“Don’t be afraid!” [the angel] said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior — yes, the Messiah, the Lord — has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!” (Luke 2:10-11, NLT)
The Savior. The Messiah. The Lord. These three titles often get overlooked in our telling of this story, perhaps because they are so familiar to us. I often wonder if that familiarity keeps us from comprehending what Luke is claiming about the child who was born in Bethlehem to Mary and Joseph. Savior and Lord were titles used by the Roman emperors to describe their activity and their authority. Messiah is a title that combines the ideas of priesthood and kingship into a singular role. Within this one verse, Luke makes profound statements about the relationship between the head of the Roman Empire, the most revered figure in Jewish imagination, and a baby born in humble circumstances in a little-known town. Philip Yancey once described the birth of Christ as an event of cosmic significance, because it represented the moment that heaven and earth met. Today, as you celebrate the coming of our Lord, may you be amazed anew by the power of this story that has changed our world forever!
All-powerful and unseen God, the coming of your light into our world has brightened weary hearts with peace. Call us out of darkness, and empower us to proclaim the birth of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (From Evangelical Lutheran Worship, p. 20)
– Pr. Andrew Chavanak, St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church (ELCA)