All babies are beautiful, but Jesus being born the only Pure One radiated light. He is the Light of the world and No Darkness was ever found in Him. He is the only sinless One. It is a fact that everyone that comes into this world endures the consequences of Adam and Eves sin--mortality, a tendency to sin, alienation from God and from other people. We do not carry the guilt of our first parents, and do not believe that an infant who dies unbaptized is condemned to hell. We must be born again.
The Baptism Sacrament gives us rebirth. We are united to Christ, putting on Christ after our death, and resurrection with Him, uniting us with Him, becoming Christian. Water was set apart by God as the means by which the Holy Spirit would bring to us new life and entrance into the heavenly Kingdom. We are Baptized in the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Jesus tells us in John 3:5 "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God."
It is important that we understand who the babe born in Bethlehem is. He is Jesus, the second person of the Trinity, sinless, the incarnate Son of God, born of Mary, the Virgin Mother of God. 2Corinthians 5:21 "For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him."
Jesus, the Son of God assumed the consequences of our sin--corruption and death--without sinning Himself, submitting Himself to unjust suffering because of our sinful passions.
Many today do not understand how important it is to be Baptized, becoming New Creatures, participating in the very righteousness of God.
Without Christmas, what hope existed for mankind?
John the Baptist makes it clear that Jesus had no need for Baptism and as Jesus approached him, in Matthew 3:20, John tries to prevent Him saying "I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?" But Jesus answered and said to him, "Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness."
Jesus did not need purification, and upon entering and coming out of the filthy sinful waters brought up with Him, sanctification of the entire world. None of which any of us are worthy of receiving.
We were all doomed, but through the Gift of Jesus, we have the only Hope that ever has or will exist, and it is your decision--coming from the gift of free will that we all have been given, starting with his Mother, Mary, when she said yes to Angel Gabriel, and accepted God's plan of salvation. She could have said no.
What will your answer be when He, the God of Love, calls on you? There is a beautiful song that I've been hearing this year called Mary did you know? The words are so meaningful. The line I get stuck on is this...
Mary did you know that the baby boy you delivered will someday deliver you? That is something to ponder about....Mary was born like the rest of us, needing salvation, too.
O Holy Night, the stars are brightly shining, it is the night of our Dear Saviors Birth, from which we are illumined.
All scripture references are taken from the Orthodox Study Bible
3 weeks ago