The Silence Is Broken.
“The Savior – yes, the Messiah, the Lord – has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!” – Luke 1:11 NLT
For four hundreds years, the people of Israel had endured a communications blackout from heaven. God had gone silent. There were no prophets speaking, no miraculous manifestations of God taking place around them. It was a dark time. And yet, God while silent, was not absent. He had been working behind the scenes for generations, preparing the way for His solution to mankind’s problem. He was orchestrating events in such a way that every detail of His plan came together perfectly – at just the right time and in just the right way. The Jews were living under the heavy-handed rule of Rome. And yet, God was going to use the very Emperor of Rome, Augustus, to decree that a census be taken throughout the Roman Empire. Coincidence? Not hardly. This royal census was going to require every person living in the empire to return to their ancestral home towns in order to register. That included Joseph, who just happened to be a descendant of King David. So he was required to take his wife-to-be, Mary, now well into her pregnancy, carrying the life of the future Messiah in her womb. to Bethlehem.
While there, Mary’s due date arrived and she gave birth to Jesus. This earth-shattering event took place in relative obscurity and would have been completely overlooked had it not been for the announcement of His birth by angels. But who did God choose to make this announcement to? Shepherds. Lowly, ordinary, blue collar shepherds. These men were the low of the low in Hebrew culture. They were looked down upon and despised by the average citizen. No one wanted their son to grow up to be a shepherd. And yet, God chose a group of these men to break His 400-year self-imposed silence and reveal the birth of His own Son. The Messiah had arrived. He was here. The one for whom the Jews had long been awaiting had finally come.
Eight days later, at the circumcision of Jesus, two other obscure individuals are used by God to confirm the arrival of the Messiah. Simeon and Anna, both godly, devout Jews, had been waiting anxiously for years for the Messiah to come. They both happened to be at the Temple on the day that Mary and Joseph brought him to be circumcised. And both praised God this remarkable answer to their prayers. “I have seen your salvation, which you have prepared for all people. He is a light to reveal God to the nations, and he is the glory of your people Israel!” (Luke 1:30-32 NLT). They recognized that they were looking at the Savior of the world, in the form of a sleeping infant, held tightly in His mother’s arms. What a fascinating manner in which to introduce the Messiah. Obscurity, anonymity, infancy, and relative poverty. Apart from the angels, there were no bells or whistles, no pomp and circumstance, no red carpets or media circus that accompanied the arrival of the most significant person to ever be born. And yet, Simeon reminds us, “This child is destined to cause many in Israel to fall, but he will be a joy to many others. He has been sent as a sign from God, but many will oppose him” (Luke 1:34-35 NLT).
The Messiah had come. The silence was broken. Salvation was near.
Father, this story never gets old. What a remarkable chain of events. What an amazing reminder of Your sovereign will and Your ability to orchestrate even the plans of the godless to accomplish Your divine plan. This passage reminds us that salvation had an arrival date. The silence and darkness was shattered on a specific day by the singing of angels and the birth of the Light of the World. Thank You for salvation. Thank You for Jesus. Amen.
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men