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Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Shepherds and God's Lamb

A group of shepherds got the surprise of their lives when the angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone around them. Perhaps “surprise” isn’t quite the right word—they were terrified. Who wouldn’t be? But the angel of the Lord arrived with good news of great joy. The shepherds had nothing to fear but every reason to rejoice. The angel had come to bring the wonderful news that the Savior, Christ the Lord, had been born. He had been born “for all people”—even for those lowly shepherds. Furthermore, the angel told the shepherds where to find the Baby.

How appropriate that shepherds left their sheep and went into Bethlehem immediately to see God’s Lamb, the One who would carry away the sin of the world! Unlike the wise men that would visit the infant Jesus later on, the shepherds had nothing but themselves to present to the newborn Savior. But that is exactly what we have to bring to the Savior when we come to Him. As the hymn writer said, “Nothing in my hand I bring, simply to thy cross I cling.” After all, we cannot contribute anything to salvation. It is God’s gift to us to be received by faith (Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8, 9).

As you give and receive Christmas gifts this year, ask whether you have believed on the Savior and received the gift of salvation. If you have, why not respond as the shepherds did after visiting the Baby Jesus? They glorified and praised God. If you haven’t received the gift of salvation, believe on Jesus now.

“Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15)