It was an “implosion“. The One whom the ants celebrate imploded to become a peasant baby who, like every infant who has ever lived, had to learn to walk and talk.
[It would have been so scary if his first words to Mary and Joseph were – “hey guys I was the one who parted the Red Sea” or “Mama! I know the number of grey hair on your head“]
While the mountains and volcanoes gush sacred metaphors regaling this great king…
While the stars dance in a frenzy, extolling his majesty and might…
While poets wax poetic with words laced with delightful and decadent deliciousness…
All we have is the witness of a simple manger in Bethlehem where the God of all flesh cradled his head.
Jesus in a manger bears no semblance to Christ on the throne. He forfeited the privileges of God and thus risked going through life unrecognised.
He (LEARNT), a word strange to one classed as Omniscient, Aramaic phoneme by phoneme. Imagine Mummy Mary teaching him. Omnipresence took on the fragile and frail legs of humanity. And the son of a carpenter, the one who flung the stars into space exchanged omnipotence for arms strong enough to drive a nail through a beam.
Man’s maker was made man that He, Ruler of the stars, might nurse at His mother’s breast; that the Bread of Heaven might hunger, the Fountain of Living waters thirst, the Light and Life of men sleep, the Way be tired on its journey; that Truth might be slapped, cursed at, accused of false witnesses, the Teacher be beaten with whips, the Sure Foundation be suspended on wood; that the Healer might be wounded; that Life might die.
In Milton’s words Jesus was the one who would ascend the Throne hereditary and bound his reign with earth’s wide bounds, his glory with the heavens. Yet the withering roar of Jehovah were suppressed as the new born baby let out his first cry.
The story of Jesus cuts against the grain of every heroic story in history. The myths from Babylon and Greece, the pages of our comic books celebrate strong heroes, not weak victims. In contrast, from the very beginning Jesus took the side of the underdog: the poor, oppressed and marginalised.
He spent his infancy as a refugee surrounding by rumours of illegitimacy. He led a tragic life followed by taunts of insanity from his family, rejection by most who heard him, betrayal, denial by his friends, a series of justice-mocking trials, execution in a form reserved for slaves and violent criminals.
[Perhaps the fact that he was born in the feeding trough of farm animals should have warned him. Perhaps as he landed he should have just booked his flight back to heaven]
This season … Let us join Mary and Joseph and behold the baby in the cradle. The One who crossed the gap between earth and heaven, impinging on the material world enough to rattle human eardrums, silencing Job’s passionate ranting comes to us clad in baby-smooth flesh.
In Jesus, God becomes one of the planet’s creatures, an event unparalleled, unheard-of, unique in the fullest sense of the word.
And this same baby Jesus died and ended sin’s reign of terror…
Written by @damilar3