Star Witnesses

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“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.

But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.”

Luke 2:8-11

These shepherds were watchful.  They are careful, and very much on guard, as they look over the flocks.  (Actually, this is quite marvelous in itself. There is a ‘brain-numbing’ issue that afflicts shepherds at 2 in the morning.)  They see everything this deep. dark night. They will make excellent ‘star’ witnesses.

The angels carefully watch as well.  I’m guessing the ‘appearance’  frightens in a very deep way.  The Bible uses this powerful word–terrified‘.  (Doesn’t that word just push through, and make it seem as though we no longer have control over reality?)

All of a sudden, an angel appears and things start getting strange.  The weirdness quickly grows, and fear begins to push through.  Fear is a very good way to a deep understanding of things that are pretty much out of our league. Reality is now going to be interpreted God’s way, under His terms. We fear first, and faith follows. That seems to be the pattern.

The angels are very quick to ‘defuse the fear.’ They need to do something to stem the urge to panic.  One of the things they do is to speak a deep and penetrating word of promise and hope.  And the shepherds are like dry sponges,  and they truly absorb all that happens. They are the ‘official’ witnesses to this night’s events.

The ‘angel’ has carried a very significant message to our souls. “‘Have absolutely no fear’!  I carry to you, an awesome word, that all of your nasty, evil sins, are quite forgiven.  There is someone special, a savior. This baby is the Messiah, Christ the Lord.'” Needless to say, the shepherds are pretty scrambled.

“A Saviour is born”.  He hasn’t ‘appeared,’ or even ‘arrived’ as full-bodied man, but He has been born.  This reliance on ‘old-fashioned’ approach, brings a much slower development to His message.  A birth slows everything down. It’s like ‘slow motion’ TV.  It forces things to develop in a slower, natural and a timely way. Everyone waits.

But He has been ‘born’.  But have no doubt, He is the ‘Messiah” and He is the King of Kings, He is the One who has been eternally chosen.  Just wait and see.

“The Christmas message is that there is hope for a ruined humanity–hope of pardon, hope of peace with God, hope of glory–because at the Father’s will Jesus became poor, and was born in a stable so that thirty years later He might hang on a cross.”   

J.I. Packer

***ybic, Bryan

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Author: Pastor Bryan Lowe

A repentant rascal with definite issues, but who is seeking to be authentic in his faith to Jesus Christ. An avid reader and a hopeful writer. Husband and father. A pastor and Bible teacher. A brain tumor survivor. Diagnosed with clinical depression, epilepsy, and now disabled. Enjoys life, such as it is, in Alaska.