Our devotion focuses on the Epistle, specifically 1 John 1:2, in which John discusses Jesus’ incarnation and the purpose for His coming. The devotion is from Reformation Heritage Bible Commentary: General Epistles.
1 John 1:1—2:2
Read the propers for today on lutherancalendar.org.
The incarnation of Christ is not just a narrative about Jesus, not just something John and the other Gospel writers wrote about so that we could celebrate Christmas. It is a story, no doubt, but one of greater import than can reside in a simple history text or theological tome: it is a story that involves you and me. The incarnation is our story, because we have something that Jesus came to trade, exchange, change out. If you recall one theological fact about Christmas, the incarnation, the enfleshment of the Son of God, please let it be this: the fact is, Jesus did not come to earth and become a baby and take on human flesh in order to save you from your flesh. Rather, Jesus took on human flesh to save you from your sin. He did not come to exchange your flesh for something esoteric or ascetic, to point you to more spiritual ideals or to give you some vain conceit of a spirit of giving. He didn’t come to motivate you to go shopping or to encourage some other commercial desire. He came, quite simply, to exchange your sin for His righteousness. Your fall for His new creation. Your sickness for His health. Your ugliness for His beauty. Your death for His life. And He effects this glorious gift exchange in the blessed trade of His death for yours, a death that only a truly incarnate, real, flesh-and-blood man could have died—the Son of God who humbled Himself and suffered death, even death on a cross. That is why this is your story and my story, and not just any story. It is a story that gives you eternal life, life that depends on a God who took on flesh for you.
Devotional reading is from Reformation Heritage Bible Commentary: General Epistles, page 264 © 2014 Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved.