What did Jesus accomplish?

Christmas.

The incarnation.

Something no one can fully comprehend; it’s so fantastic, yet real.

And necessary.

Jesus. God with us. God being like us—yet not exactly like us.

Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary, a miracle baby, conceived by the Holy Spirit.

I often wonder what it was like for her to have a perfect child. We can only imagine. After His birth, her other children were normal, sinful human beings. Can you visualize their home? Older brother is the perfect example. Younger siblings need correction and guidance. Older brother always does the correct thing—and He obeys without questioning, all the time.

Why didn’t his brothers trust Him to be their Savior until after the resurrection? They must have rebelled against this good Brother, never being able to measure up to His perfection. They might even have resented Him. But, when He rose from the dead and they saw Him, they knew He was the Messiah. They finally understood.

Was Jesus twelve when He knew who He was—or was it much earlier? The Bible doesn’t say, and I always try to envision what Jesus was like as a child—what He said and did.

In the Temple, He asked questions to the smartest, most schooled people in the world and answered their questions. It was, in a small way, the beginning of His ministry.

Of course, we know Jesus’ formal ministry began with His baptism—the amazing words from God the Father and the Holy Spirit Dove descending onto Him: Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased (Luke 3:22b).

From that moment on, Jesus taught, preached, healed, did miracles, and led people to believe in Him.

He had three years before they killed Him.

Humanly speaking, His ministry was cut short. Yet, we cannot look at it that way.

Jesus accomplished salvation!

Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him (Hebrews 5:8-9).

Jesus did what no one else could possibly have done. He came, lived a perfect life, blessed others, died, and rose again—by His own power—and in so doing defeated death. He made a way for every person to live eternally. The Perfect Son of God was the only Person who could have paid for sin—because He was sinless.

I can’t fathom that kind of love.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved (John 3:16-17). The whole purpose of Christmas was the salvation of the world.

Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us (Matthew 1:23).

May God bless you as you celebrate this amazing Gift—God with us.

Whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Have you believed on Jesus?

How God protected Mary, Jesus’ mother

Especially at Christmastime, we think about the mother of the Lord Jesus, Mary. She was willing to become the mother of the Savior. You can just imagine Mary trying to explain her miraculous pregnancy. “Oh yes, the angel Gabriel told me . . . .“ “No, Joseph and I have never . . . .” “My baby is the Messiah.”


And the reactions: “Yeah, right. Tell us another one.” “Great story, Mary. Now, can you tell us the truth?” “You saw an angel? Hmm . . . can you describe him to us?” “God chose you to be the Messiah’s mother?” “Bwa, ha, ha, ha!”

But, God helped Mary and protected her. He confirmed to her time after time what she must have sometimes doubted:

  • Joseph got the message of Jesus’ divinity also, straight from an angel of God. (Matthew 1:20-24)
  • Her cousin Elisabeth greeted Mary with, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? (Luke 1:42b-43)
  • The baby John the Baptist leaped in Elisabeth’s womb. Even John—before he was born—knew who Jesus was! (Luke 1:41)
  • The night Jesus was born, Mary had visitors. They were shepherds who told a fantastic story about angels and the message of the Messiah’s birth: And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger (Luke 2:10-16). It’s no wonder Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart (Luke 2:19).
  • When Jesus was eight days old, he was taken to the Temple to be circumcised. An elderly man named Simeon was there. God had let him know he would not die until he had seen the Messiah. When he saw Jesus, he took him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel. And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him (Luke 2:28-33). Can you imagine Mary’s reaction?
  • That wasn’t all on that day! Anna, a very, very old lady, gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem (from Luke 2:38).
  • A while later, wise men from the east showed up at their house. They probably told Mary and Joseph about how the special star lead them. I would love to have been there to witness this scene! And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh (Matthew 2:11).
  • Then, God preserved Jesus’ life and Mary and Joseph from Herod’s crazy persecution. The angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him. When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt (Matthew 2:13-14). See how God took care of their family?
  • The next confirmation to Mary that we know about was when Jesus was found in the temple sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers (Luke 2:46-47). Later, the Bible tells us that his mother kept all these sayings in her heart (from Luke 2:51).
  • To me, it must have been amazing to have this Child under her roof. The Bible tells about His obedience in this short statement: And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them (Luke 2:51a). Can you imagine what it was like for Mary to have the Son of God obeying her and her husband, perfectly, all the time? A perfect Child . . . Emmanuel . . . God with us (Matthew 1:23).
  • God allowed Mary to watch Jesus’ earthly ministry. We find her with the believers. She saw His miracles, heard His teachings, witnessed His death on the cross. She was there when He appeared after His resurrection. What a privilege!
  • When Jesus hung on the cross, Jesus, Mary’s firstborn, made sure Mary would be cared for. She was a widow by then, and Jesus asked John (the youngest apostle) to care for her. I wonder what she thought. Surely, she cried.

All through Mary’s life, God took care of her, confirmed to her that Jesus was the Christ, the promised Messiah, and ministered to her. God protected her.

Praise Him!

Revised from post first published in 2014, at “In the Way,” my first blog.