We Esteemed Him Not

We read in Luke 2:10-14 of the birth of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. And we read in Isaiah 53:2-5 (ESV) a prophecy concerning Jesus Christ:

“He had no form or majesty that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Sure he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed.”

And then we read this about Jesus Christ in John 1:1-4,10-14 (ESV):

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men.”

“He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

And the picture that we get from these passages of Scripture is that Jesus Christ, although he was God (the second person of our triune God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), he left his throne in heaven, emptied himself, took on the form of a servant, was born in the likeness of men, and being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross (see Philippians 2:5-11).

Even though he was God incarnate – fully God yet fully human when he walked the face of this earth, yet without sin – he was despised and rejected of human beings. He was a man of sorrows and acquainted (familiar) with suffering. And people hid their faces from him, and they did not esteem him. And even though he is our creator God, when he came to his own people, most all of them did not receive him for who he is.

And the other picture that we get from these Scriptures is that Jesus – that baby who was born to his mother Mary, conceived of the Holy Spirit, who had been laid in a manger after he was born – not only is he the only Begotten Son of God, but he is God, and he is our creator God, and he came to this earth for a very specific purpose, which was to die on a cross so that we might, by faith in him, die to sin and live to his righteousness.

And we also learn that not everyone rejected Jesus Christ. He had some followers, even though his closest companions, his 12 disciples, deserted him when he was arrested and put on trial for a crime he did not commit. Well, one of his disciples was the one who betrayed him and handed him over to be arrested, and another one denied him three times, but we do read that John stood with Jesus’ mother Mary at Jesus’ crucifixion.

And all of them but Judas, who was his betrayer, and who killed himself, continued with Jesus after his death and resurrection. And I believe most of them became apostles. And others believed in Jesus and received him as their Lord and Savior, too. But they were not born of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. For the faith that is required to believe in Jesus Christ is of God and it’s not of our own doing (Ephesians 2:8-10).

So, we can’t decide in our flesh what that faith looks like or what it means for us to “receive” Christ. For this faith is of God, it comes from God, it is authored and perfected by Jesus Christ, and we can’t even come to faith in Christ unless God the Father draws us to Christ, i.e. unless he persuades us as to his holiness and righteousness and of our sinfulness and of our need to repent of our sins to follow Jesus in obedience to his ways (John 6:44).

Hebrews 12:1-2 ESV

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”

So, as followers of Jesus Christ we are to lay aside every weight, everything that holds us back from fully surrendering our lives to Jesus Christ; everything which causes us to stumble, and everything that presents itself as an obstacle to total commitment to Jesus Christ as Lord of our lives. And we must forsake every sin, for sin tends to cling closely to us and to impact our lives so that we obey it instead of Jesus Christ. So we must cast these things off so that we can live the lives Jesus died for, that we might live.

[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

Sweet Little Jesus Boy

By Robert MacGimsey

Sweet little Jesus Boy,
they made you be born in a manger.
Sweet little Holy Child,
didn’t know who You was.

Didn’t know you come to save us, Lord;
to take our sins away.
Our eyes was blind, we couldn’t see,
we didn’t know who You was.

Long time ago, you was born.
Born in a manger low,
Sweet little Jesus Boy.

The world treat You mean, Lord;
treat me mean, too.
But that’s how things is down here,
we didn’t know t’was You.

You done showed us how,
we is trying.
Master, You done showed us how,
even when you’s dying.

Just seem like we can’t do right,
look how we treated You.
But please, sir, forgive us Lord,
we didn’t know ’twas You.

Sweet little Jesus Boy,
born long time ago.
Sweet little Holy Child,
and we didn’t know who You was….

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