McMinnville Seventh-day Adventist Church


Christmas - An Incarnation Experience

How many of you would expect a visit from the President of the United States in your lifetime? You may ask, Why would He visit me? I am not that important. I am quite insignificant to him. So why would the Creator of the universe think to pay this rebellious planet a visit? Not just a visit, but a mission with a plan to save this planet from eternal doom. Not just a visit, but an incarnation, a God-with-us kind of visit. He did not just pay a hasty visit and leave before He could get tainted and soiled by this sin-sick environment. As Immanuel He chose to identify Himself with you, with me. Wow, what an amazing act of love!

He risked everything. He came, willing to give what it takes, even His life. For what? To make it possible for me to leave my filthy, dirty, little house and join Him in His big house in heaven (John 3:16). So, how does His incarnation challenge your and my relationships here on earth? How can I incarnate into the lives of others, and be Christ to them who know Him not? The answer lies in the method Christ used, the incarnation method. He calls us to incarnate into the lives of others. How? By mingling or visiting with those whom we may not even like. By risking that our garments may get soiled, and smell of the sinful vices of this world.

We are told that “Christ's method alone will give true success in reaching the people. The Savior mingled with men as one who desired their good. He showed His sympathy for them, ministered to their needs, and won their confidence. Then He bade them, ‘Follow Me.’” (MH 143.3) This is why He came. This is the reason for the incarnation visit from the King of the universe.

“There is need of coming close to the people by personal effort. If less time were given to sermonizing, and more time were spent in personal ministry, greater results would be seen. The poor are to be relieved, the sick cared for, the sorrowing and the bereaved comforted, the ignorant instructed, the inexperienced counseled. We are to weep with those that weep, and rejoice with those that rejoice. Accompanied by the power of persuasion, the power of prayer, the power of the love of God, this work will not, cannot, be without fruit.”

May you and I, this Christmas, step outside of our cozy comfort zone, and be willing to incarnate into the messy world of some poor struggling sinner in need of a Friend and a hope.

- Pastor Jerry Joubert