Jn 1:10-11 ‘He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him’.
The story of Christmas is a story of missed opportunity!
Although it was heralded by angelic choirs, the world, the innkeeper and the setting into which he came i.e. Israel, did not recognise who he was.
Even Mary and Joseph, did not fully recognise who he was and what was taking place!
It wasn’t something that was soon rectified either!!!
Lk 19:44 ‘…you did not recognize the time of God's coming to you’ NIV
After 33+ years of God being manifested in flesh, the last three being confirmed by the power of the Holy Spirit, Jerusalem still did not recognise him as the Christ, the Son of the Living God, the Salvation of the World.
At best they thought he was a prophet (Mt 21:10-11), at worst they were already plotting to crucify him.
But when you think about it, God has always made a habit of turning up in ways that challange us to recognise him
Even today, we as Christians need to be aware of the danger.
Jerusalem was blinded by religion; we can be blinded because Gods visitation does not come according to our doctrine (seen this over last few years with some of the controversy over certain revivals)
But also because Gods visitation comes in ways we don’t recognise
· Jacob, who wrestled with God in human form
· Balaam’s donkey. Spoke accoring to circumstances
· Elijah – God not in the wind, fire or earthquake, but whisper
In Bethlehem he was not recognised either because he came in a way that was outside their mind-set and tradition.
This Christmas be open to how Jesus wants to come to you.
Have eyes to see 'Emmanuel', the 'God with us'.