14 The Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this,
cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field;
on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life.
15 I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” (Genesis 3:14-15)
A little girl came home from Sunday school triumphantly waving a paper, “Mommy,” she said, “My teacher says I drew the most unusual Christmas picture she has ever seen!”
The mother studied the picture for a moment and concluded it was indeed a very peculiar Christmas picture. “This is wonderfully drawn, but why have you made all these people riding on the back of an airplane,” the mother gently asked.
“It’s the flight into Egypt,” the little girl said, with a hint of disappointment that the picture’s meaning was not immediately obvious.
“Oh,” the mother said cautiously. “Well, who is this mean looking man at the front?”
“That’s Pontius, the Pilot,” the girl said now visibly impatient.
“I see. And here you have Mary and Joseph and the baby,” the mother volunteered. Studying the picture silently for a moment, she summoned the courage to ask, “But who is this fat man sitting behind Mary?”
The little girl sighed, “Can’t you tell? That’s Round John Virgin!”
How humorous, how sad, but how true that many within our world, culture, neighborhoods, schools, places of employment and even churches have similar mistaken notions and ideas as to the characters, scenes, settings, and incidents which occurred that first Christmas. Many in our world would rather focus their attention on a variety of other sights, sounds, and characters. Others would even regulate Jesus Christ to the status of myth and attempt to banish and ban the very word “Christmas” from the holiday season.
Among religious people, and I use this term loosely to define those who call themselves people of faith regardless of whatever object their faith may be centered in, there is rarely little debate that Jesus Christ was born. The debate centers on who Jesus Christ is? Is He the Messiah? Some say that He is just a man. Others would acknowledge that He is at least a prophet, and perhaps a good, moral teacher.
But what does the Bible say about whom the Messiah would be, His credentials, and how He would come to earth and how we would recognize Him? Most significantly, does Jesus Christ fulfill the qualifications of the Messiah? If He does not, then He is not Messiah no matter how much we revere Him. However, if He does fulfill these qualifications concerning the Messiah, then the believer is to share this truth and the unbeliever is challenged to consider this truth.
What are the qualifications, through biblical prophecy, surrounding the birth of the Messiah, and does Jesus Christ fulfill them? For the next several days, we will examine the various and cumulative prophecies contained in the Old Testament Scriptures regarding the person and work of the Messiah. We will then compare those prophecies with the New Testament record concerning the person and work of Jesus Christ. We will see if they are in harmony with each other.
The first prophecy contained in the Scriptures regarding the Messiah is contained in Genesis 3:14-15. When next we meet we will examine this inaugural Messianic prophecy in light of its overall context. Stay tuned.
May the Lord’s truth and grace be found here.
Soli deo Gloria!