The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. Psalm 126:3
This short verse not only summarizes what Christmas is all about, it also summarizes what Christians believe. The Lord has sent a Savior – Jesus – and He has redeemed us from our sins. To redeem means to buy back … He bought us back with the innocent suffering and death of His Son. And God gives all of this to us, above and beyond the daily blessings He provides, despite our complete unworthiness. No wonder we are filled with joy.
Nowhere in God’s Word does He say that we have done great things for Him so that He can be impressed. In fact, the one man who said something similar went home unjustified according to Jesus (Luke 18:9-14). We have not done great things for God, nor can we do so. We cannot measure how close we are to God by figuring out how good we are, no matter how much we imagine our good works are worth. God knows we are unworthy, and still He does great things for us.
The Good News of the Gospel is that Jesus has done for us the great things we could not do for ourselves. We are filled with joy – at Christmas and forever – because what Jesus has done brings us forgiveness, peace, reconciliation with God, and life everlasting in paradise.
Prayer: Dear Lord God, we praise and thank You for fulfilling the promises of Your Holy Word in sending Your Son, Jesus, to redeem us from all our sins. Amen.
© 2006 Lutheran Hour Ministries
These devotions have been written by Rev. Paul and Kaye Wolff. Rev. Paul Wolff is a 1996 graduate of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. He has served as a pastor in the Detroit area for 10 years. He and co-author wife, Kaye, live in Southfield, Michigan.
Kaye Dumas Wolff is Chairperson of the Black Ministry Church Planting Task Force and a Mission Affiliate of LCMS World Missions where she serves as a training facilitator for laity in evangelism and mission work. Kaye serves on the Advisory Council of the Ethnic Immigrant Institute of Theology of Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, and she is a presenter for Lutheran Hour Ministries’ Equipping to Share Workshop.
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