Behold the Image Word on the Week 19th December 2020.
God’s unquenchable love for man was guaranteed from the start. That the love should have been reciprocal but was not has been highlighted in man’s fall. The image of God so lovingly made self-destructs in Eden (Genesis Chapter 1 verse 27 & Chapter 3 verse 15).
The exile from Eden invoked the curse. It fell on the ground. Unremitting toil replaced self-propagation. By the sweat of his brow Adam now toiled. This was sweetened by God’s promise that one day Satan’s head would be crushed – a mortal blow while the Serpent-crusher would himself be wounded (Genesis Chapter 3 verses 17/19 &15).
God’s love for Abraham produced the wonderful act of obedience whereby Isaac was, figuratively speaking, was received back from the dead Hebrews Chapter 11 verses 18/19). The promises to Abraham of becoming a great nation and a blessing to all people are being fulfilled today in the proclamation of the gospel (Genesis Chapter 12 verses 2/3).
Throughout the Old Testament there was a search for the one who would be the Serpent-crusher or ‘Messiah’ in Hebrew or ‘the Christ’ in Greek. Surprisingly it was to Mary, a Galilean peasant, that the angel was sent bypassing the authorities and religious men of Israel. The image of God was to appear, not in the Temple, but in a virgin’s womb. God had found someone of a humble and contrite spirit (Isaiah 66 verse 2).
The angel told Mary that her cousin Elizabeth was to have a child in her old age. It was to Elizabeth that Mary went to live for three months and when they met, the Holy Spirit who had come upon Mary, filled Elizabeth also. It was then that she understood that Mary was the “mother of my Lord”.
Mary was inspired to put her feelings into a song to God her saviour. (St Luke Chapter 1 verses 39 to 56). The image in the womb soon became the image in the manger and the visit of shepherds brought the confirming message of the angels “Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.” (St Luke Chapter 2 verse 11).
“Who is He in yonder stall at whose feet the shepherds fall?” is the question! Hebrews provides the answer – Chapter 1 verse 3 He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.
He is the incomparable Christ.