A Christmas Hope

We can depend on J. I. Packer to assist us in our pledge to stay Christ-centered this Christmas season.

“We see now what it meant for the Son of God to empty Himself and become poor. It meant a laying aside of glory; a voluntary restraint of power; an acceptance of hardship, isolation, ill-treatment, malice and misunderstanding; finally, a death involved such agony – spiritual even more than physical – that His mind nearly broke under the prospect of it.

It meant love to the uttermost for unlovely human beings, that they through His poverty might become rich.

The Christmas message is that there is a hope for ruined humanity – hope for pardon, hope for peace with God, hope for glory, because of the Father’s will Jesus Christ became poor and was born in a stable so that 30 years later He might hang on a cross.”

~J. I. Packer, Knowing God


“She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”

~Matthew 1:21 (ESV)

The Next Step

STEP

It’s not too difficult to find time to read God’s Word, but to go a step further and thoroughly think through what we’ve read is another story altogether.

Maybe we’re just too busy.

Yet, I hear the wisdom of an old friend who said that people usually find time to do the things that they really want to do.

May God give us a desire to take that next step and meditate on what God has revealed to us in the Bible.

In J.I. Packer’s classic, Knowing God, his definition of “meditation” serves as a enticing explanation of what it means to ponder the things of God.

“Meditation is the activity of calling to mind, and thinking over, and dwelling on, and applying to oneself, the various things that one knows about the works and ways and purposes and promises of God. It is an activity of holy thought, consciously performed in the presence of God, under the eye of God, by the help of God, as a means of communion with God.

Its purpose is to clear one’s mental and spiritual vision of God, and to let His truth make its full and proper impact on one’s mind and heart. It is a matter of talking to oneself about God and oneself; it is, indeed, often a matter of arguing with oneself, reasoning oneself out of moods of doubt and unbelief into a clear apprehension of God’s power and grace.

Its effect is ever to humble us, as we contemplate God’s greatness and glory and our own littleness and sinfulness, and to encourage and reassure us – ‘comfort’ us, in the old, strong, Bible sense of the word – as we contemplate the unsearchable riches of divine mercy displayed in the Lord Jesus Christ.”

~J.I. Packer, Knowing God


“And [Martha] had a sister called Mary, who sat at the the Lord’s feet and listened to His teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving.”

~Luke 10:39-40 (ESV)