December 1 – “When the time had fully come God sent his Son”

Read: Galatians 3:26-4:7

History is much more than a collection of random facts and a chain reaction of events. History is shaped by God. Who we are depends on a relationship with a real life historical person, Christ Jesus. Because of the salvation Christ offers, we are no longer slaves to sin. The Lord of history has made a way for our salvation. God, in Christ, entered into human life fully so that we might fully know our Heavenly Father.

Our thoughtful, Biblical celebration of Christmas helps us understand the substance of personal life. As we consider the grand scale of history we find our attention on a single subject, Jesus Christ. Apart from Christ, our ordinary lives lack purpose. If we don’t see ourselves as image-bearers of God, what defines our self worth? Without the Lord of history the confusion, frustration, and burdens of life penetrate and shape our self-understanding. Christmas is a reminder of what counts in life. It is a time of spiritual renewal when we re-examine the meaning and the practice of our faith in Christ.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for sending your Son to make us your children. Thank you for freeing us from sin and slavery and bringing us into your family. With the Spirit of your Son in our hearts we call you our Father, Amen.

Doug Webster is my friend and mentor and in the late 1980’s I had the privilege of serving as Administrative Pastor at Evangelical Community Church (ECC) in Bloomington, Indiana during his tenure as Senior Pastor. These devotionals were originally prepared for ECC and Doug has graciously allowed me to revise and post them. Doug is now Professor of Pastoral Theology and Preaching at Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Alabama.

6 thoughts on “December 1 – “When the time had fully come God sent his Son””

  1. Jim, So glad to hear from you again. I have missed your articles. Pray you will have a nice Christmas and a very Happy New Year. May God continue to bless you. John is having a cataract taken off his right eye tomorrow morning at 6:00 a.m. Then the left eye will be done on the 21st. Please pray that everything goes the way it should. Thank you.

  2. So glad you’re doing these devos again! Love Soulcraft by Doug! He has wonderful insights into God’s word! Read the chapter on friendship four times! Thanks for letting me know about it months ago! Abiding in Him- David

  3. Thank you for this message. There is one sentence that jumps out at me: “If we do not see ourselves as image bearers of God, what defines our self worth?” This is so thought provoking, especially in the context of Christmas. I remember a teaching I heard many years ago regarding history, it taught us to think of history as ‘His Story’. What a wonderful reminder and to reflect on the question, “What gives me self-worth?” The answer is revealed in the significance of Christmas. I needed this reminder.

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