‘Till He Appeared 12/6/98

I John 3:5, 8 & 4:9
Page 1777 Come Alive Bible

Jesus Christ laid aside His robes of eternal glory and became enshrouded in swaddling clothes for a purpose. This was the greatest extraterrestrial rescue mission ever attempted. It had more peril programmed into the mission than Apollo 13 multiplied a thousandfold. There was no escape vehicle for the cosmic Christ.

His mission had been pre-programmed and chronicled over a period of 1500 years. More than 330 exact details were penned by Old Testament prophets. There was to be no lack of understanding of the mission.

After the accomplishment of His mission to liberate and extricate doomed human beings one of His earthly companions wrote of the reason for it. John, who shared His earth walk gave three reasons for this daring undertaking.

“And you know that He was manifested to take away our sins, and in Him there is no sin.” The word “manifested” or “appeared” translates the Greek word PHANEROO, which means to remove a lid, or pull a curtain. It speaks of divine revelation. That is what happened in Bethlehem. God was unveiled and revealed as never before.

John 1: 1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

Persons who master more than one language know that in some languages you can say things you can’t say in certain other languages. There are no words by which certain words can be translated.

Literally, the Greek structure says, “Before time began to begin the Word was…” Time was a part of creation. Creation involved time, matter, and space – all three. Before time began to begin Christ existed.

The word “Word” translates the Greek word Logos. “In the beginning was the Logos.” Or, “Before time began to begin was the Logos.”

To find the meaning of a word look to see how it was used during the time it was employed. At the time of John’s writings “Logos” was used of Philo meaning, “all that is known or knowable about God.” John used it as a reference to Christ meaning, “All that is known or knowable about God is in the person of Christ.”

When the virgin Mary pulled back the cover and let persons see her new born baby she was manifesting, unveiling God.

There is a complex rule of Greek grammar when applied asserts emphatically that Jesus is God. The rule is: When two nouns in the same case are connected by the Greek word “and” and the second noun is not preceded by the article, the second noun refers to the same person or thing as the first noun, and is a further description of it.

Titus 2: 13 refers to “the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” The rule of grammar identifies Jesus Christ at God.

This is further emphasized by the fact the Greek word for “and” can be translated “even.”

II Peter 1: 1 also refers to Christ as “God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” He is God.

When applied to Titus 2: 13 it is even clearer: “the great God even our Savior Jesus Christ.”

In Bethlehem the unveiling began.

The purpose of this unveiling of God was to take away sins.

He did this for every infant that dies before reaching an age of reasoning. We are all born with an old sin nature variously called our Adamic nature. Jesus Christ being born of the virgin had no old sin nature. Therefore, when He died on the cross He acquitted all of us of our old sin nature.

He lived without any personal sin. We all have personal sins. He died without any personal sins for our personal sins. For His gift of salvation to be applied we must respond to Him in loving acceptance.

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (II Corinthians 5:21).

He came to – – – – –

“He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil” (I John 3:8).

The word destroy means “to render ineffective, to rob of power.”

A missionary in Africa returned to his house to find in it a large python. He retreated to his truck and got his 45 pistol. Quietly he got as near the snake as possible and fired a mortal round right between the snakes eyes. The python didn’t die instantly. The missionary ran outside as the monstrous snake began to thrash around. The missionary heard things crashing, falling, and breaking. Soon all was quiet. Upon returning to the house he found the place in a mess. In dying the snake had caused a lot of damage. Christ mortally wounded Satan on the cross but he continues to do damage. Christ wants to repair that.

Is there a work of Satan in your life presently that you need to enlist Christ’s help in destroying? In these moments I want to deal with the one considered by some to be the number one sin of church going Christians. It is bitterness.

Guilt is what we feel when we hurt someone.

Bitterness is what we experience when someone hurts us.

Bitterness comes from within us. If a container of sweet water is jolted sweet water comes out. If a container of bitter water is jolted bitter water comes out. What is within is what comes out of us.

If you keep bitterness inside you it will make you sick.

If you vent it on others it will make them sick —– of you.

Get rid of it.
Admit you have been wronged.
Concede the person who wronged you deserves to be punished.
Resolve to release the offender of his or her debt.

You get rid of bitterness unilaterally. It doesn’t matter what the other person did or that they don’t seek forgiveness. Don’t concentrate on the offender. What he or she did is her problem. What you do about it is your problem. When you refuse to rid your life of bitterness you are the puppet of the offended. That person controls your emotions. Let Christ control them instead.

If you were to competitively run a race for a prize had you rather run alone or strapped to the leg of another as in a three legged race. When you refuse to get bitterness out of your life you are strapped to the offender and limited by that person.

Let Jesus destroy the word of Satan in your life. Get all bitterness out.

“In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him” (I John 4:9).

He gives us strength by which to live.
He gives us peace in which to live.
He becomes the object for which to live.
This life is a reference to the fullest development of our highest powers, both of understanding and enjoyment.

Life with Christ gives even adversity purpose. Cripple such a person and you have Sir Walter Scott. Put him in a prison cell and you have a John Bunyan. Nearly bury him in snow at a place like Valley Forge and you have a George Washington. Have him born in abject poverty and you have a Lincoln. Put him in a grease pit in a train roundhouse and you have a Walter Chrysler. Make him second fiddle in an obscure South Africa orchestra and you have a Toscanini. Hardships with Christ as our companion don’t crush us they challenge us.

Christmas is not just the story of a baby born. It is the story about the person into whom the baby grew, who came to redeem us from our sins and to call us into partnership with His great and mighty purpose. That’s living.