For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16
As presented on *The Lutheran Hour® by Dr. Walter A. Maier, 1937
At the manger in Bethlehem there are no restrictions or distinctions. “God so loved the world”—the entire human race from pole to pole—from the first moment of its existence until the last moment when this world crumbles into everlasting decay! Before the cradled Christ child there are no Nordics or Slavs or Semites. There are no destitute, like the 20,000,000 plus who are fed by the open hand of public or private charity. Before the Christ child there are no barriers separating capitalists from laborers, doctors of philosophy from illiterates, freemen from slaves, Protestants from Catholics, or Jews from Gentiles.
The angelic message, “Unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord,” is treasured in the hearts of hundreds of millions, from the poorest and the most underprivileged men and women to internationally acclaimed geniuses, statesmen, and leaders.
No matter who you are or what you are, God loves you. Will you not resolve: “Let us now go even unto Bethlehem and see this thing which is come to pass”? True, we cannot understand the immeasurable mercy by which Christ loved this world. We have our Christmas gift lists for our family and friends and for those—how ashamed we ought to be, and yet how true this often is!—who must be remembered because they remember us. But, above our knowledge and understanding is God's worldwide, eternal gift list from which no name is omitted. Only the sinner himself, rebellious, unbelieving, blasphemous, can cross off his own name.
Prayer: God grant that we will all come and bow before our glorified Redeemer! Amen.
Taken from A Message of Hope: Proclaiming the Promise (selections from messages broadcast on *The Lutheran Hour, celebrating 75 years of proclaiming the promise).
Copyright © 2005 by Lutheran Hour Ministries
*The Lutheran Hour is the longest-running Christian radio broadcast in the world. It is a production of Lutheran Hour Ministries. For more information, visit www.lutheranhour.org.
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