All month long we have been reflecting on the miracle of the incarnation – when Jesus (the Son of God) took on flesh and was born in Bethlehem. It is remarkable to think of the humility it took for the independent and Sovereign God to become a fetus, dependent on an umbilical cord! But as amazing as that is, it is also wild to imagine the commitment God showed to the incarnation AFTER Jesus’ birth. He did not simply jump from birth to full grown man . . . No, He grew up in real time, just like any other child.
Jesus had a mother and father; siblings, and friends. Jesus learned a vocation. Jesus went through puberty. The One who walked on water, once had a “first step.” Jesus was once a Middle Schooler. Amazing to imagine, right? Taking some imagination to this notion, Steven Curtis Chapman wrote the song “This Baby” to flesh out the full implications of the 30+ year duration of Jesus’ life.
This notion is confirmed by Luke 2:40, 52, as it says, “And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom. And the favor of God was upon Him . . . And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.” Matthew and Luke’s Gospel’s jump from the birth of Jesus to His public ministry. Mark simply begins with Jesus’ baptism. The lack of what was written about Jesus’ growing up years should not trick us into thinking that Jesus did not have an adolescent period. The “Major” was a “minor” at one point. But why?
Hebrews 4:15-16 says, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” This verse reminds us that Jesus can fully identify with us in our human experience, and can provide the help we need in every stage of life.
Take a moment today to listen to Chapman’s “This Baby” and reflect on the full implications of Jesus’ birth . . . and life.
This Baby – Steven Curtis Chapman
Well, He cried when He was hungry,
Did all the things that babies do;
He rocked and He napped on His mother’s lap,
And He wiggled and giggled and cooed.
There were the cheers when He took His first step,
And the tears when He got His first teeth;
Almost everything about this little baby
Seemed as natural as it could be.
But this baby made the angels sing,
And this baby made a new star shine in the sky.
This baby had come to change the world.
This baby was God’s own son, this baby was like no other one.
This baby was God with us, this baby was Jesus.
And this baby grew into a young boy,
Who learned to read and write and wrestle with dad;
There was the climbin’ of trees and the scrapin’ of knees,
And all the fun that a boy’s born to have.
He grew taller and some things started changing,
Like His complexion and the sound of His voice;
There was work to be done as a carpenter’s son
And all the neighbors said He’s such a fine boy.
But this boy made the angels sing,
And this boy made a new star shine in the sky.
This boy had come to change the world.
This boy was God’s own son, this boy was like no other one.
This boy was God with us. This boy became a man,
And love made Him laugh and death made Him cry.
With the life that He lived and the death that He died,
He showed us heaven with His hands and His heart,
‘Cause this man was God’s own son.
This man was like no other one,
Holy and human right from the start.
This baby was God with us, this baby, this baby was Jesus!
To access all 31 days of “The Christmas Carols” Devotional, click here.
To access playlists for all 31 songs, visit: