Jumping for Joy — Merry
By Thomas A. Glessner, J.D.
December 21, 2011
Christmas time is here and once again our nation is busy in the hustle and bustle of the Holiday season. Millions of dollars will be spent on gifts for the special people in our lives as it is a wonderful thing to take time and express love to those who are important to us. And, of course, the magic of the Holiday excites children who anxiously await the pretend arrival of Old St. Nick on Christmas Eve.
Christmas, however, is so much more than gifts and Santa Claus. As believers, we have based our entire lives on the truth found in the little baby who slept his first night on earth in a manger in the presence of farm animals. Emmanuel (God is with Us) has come to earth and, in doing so, has provided for us eternal life and a relationship with the Creator of the universe.
The Christmas story also has profound pro-life meaning. Mary, an unwed pregnant teenager at the time, clearly was faced with the embarrassment of the situation and accusations from the gossip mongers in her community. Yet, she placed her situation in the hands of God trusting that in his infinite wisdom and sovereignty all would be well.
My favorite part of the Christmas story comes from the gospel of Luke where Mary visits her cousin Elizabeth who, though in her elder years, is also pregnant with a special baby — John the Baptist. Scripture tells us that when Mary enters the home of Elizabeth a very interesting exchange takes place as Elizabeth proclaims: "Why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me! As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy." Luke 1: 43-44.
It is interesting to note that Luke, the author of this passage, was a physician. As such a professional in his day he obviously had delivered quite a few babies. It is profound to note that Dr. Luke refers to John who resides at this time within his mother's womb as a baby and, as a medical doctor, makes no distinction between unborn and born human life. Further, his description of this event, while inspired by the Holy Spirit, also reads much like a medical observation of prenatal life. Indeed, through the modern technology of ultrasound we now can actually get a glimpse of what this may have looked like within the womb of Elizabeth. See www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CdYYzK47X0&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL
We have much to be thankful for this Christmas season. Because of Emmanuel, God is truly with us and, like John within the womb of his mother Elizabeth, we too should be jumping for joy. We should jump for joy because of the gift of life, both physical and spiritual, that the child of Bethlehem has given us.
Merry Christmas to all.
Copyright © 2011 by Thomas A. Glessner. All rights reserved.