Listen: The Birthday of a King
Read: Matthew 5:17-20
Culturally, the truth of Jesus’ birth isn’t totally lost in our Christmas celebrations. However, much of the significance is not clearly understood. Let’s try and dig a little into the significance of the Saviour’s birth.
First, who was this new born king? Significantly, that baby was God Himself in the form of a servant. Second, God had come to serve. Jesus’ birth had an ultimate purpose and aim. Christ came to reveal God’s righteousness. This singular goal can be thought of in two distinct parts: Jesus’ active obedience and passive obedience. We will talk more about his passive obedience on another day. So let’s look at the significance of Jesus’ birth as we gaze upon His active obedience.
What is meant by “active obedience” can be illustrated by our text in Matthew 5 from today’s reading. Jesus hadn’t come to destroy the law, but He did come into the world in order that He would fulfill all the law of God. Therefore, Jesus was born in part, to actively obey all God’s law.
Our King’s active obedience toward God was on behalf of us guilty, already condemned, sinners. The law stood to condemn us for our disobedience. Our King was born to merit our salvation through actively obeying God on our behalf. Now we are declared to be right with God by His grace through faith in Christ to the Glory of God alone.
In our Christmas carol, consider these lyrics, “From the manger bed what a path has led, what a perfect holy way.” That perfect holy way was Jesus’ active obedience that secured for us eternal salvation. This is at least part of the significance of the birthday of our King. Happy Birthday, Jesus.