Every December, Christians remember, reflect on, and rejoice in the incarnation of Jesus Christ. The incarnation refers to when the Son of God, the Second Person of the Trinity, put on human flesh, or “took flesh to himself.” The apostle John describes it like this: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (Jn. 1:14). The apostle Paul put it this way: “In Him (Jesus) the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily” (Col. 2:9).
The Ligonier Statement on Christology summarises this doctrine like this, “Truly God, He became truly man, two natures in one Person.” As a church, we happily confess “the mystery and wonder of God made flesh.” This is the glorious bedrock reality that undergirds the Christmas season. Without the incarnation, there would be no Christmas.
There are many ways to apply the truth and beauty of the incarnation of the Son of God to our lives and church. In this article, I want to mention one you may not have thought of before (I know I hadn’t until recently). It’s about the topic of abortion.
Without the incarnation, there would be no Christmas
On December 1, 2021, the Supreme Court of the United States heard oral arguments for Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. The case is over whether an abortion provider in Jackson, Mississippi, can provide abortions after 15 weeks of gestation. The case is a direct assault on the landmark Roe v. Wade case of 1973, affirmed in the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey case, which says that states cannot prohibit abortion before fetal viability—i.e. the point at which a baby can live outside the womb (usually considered to be between 22-24 weeks of pregnancy).
Many think that the Dobbs case will allow the Supreme Court to rule that Roe v. Wade is unconstitutional. This would be the greatest victory for the conservative legal project in our generation, not to mention the answer to the prayers of millions of Christians over the last 50 years. The Supreme Court will likely rule on the Dobbs case in June. Until then, pray that God would give the justices wisdom to know what is right and courage to do what is right in this case.
But what does Dobbs have to do with Christmas? What is the connection between one of the most important Supreme Court cases in our lifetimes and the “most wonderful time of the year”?
It has to do with the nature of the incarnation. Have you ever considered exactly how the Son of God became a man? He didn’t appear as a fully grown, mature man. He didn’t arrive as a child or teenager. He didn’t even arrive as a baby. The Son of God arrived on earth as an unborn baby. The angel said to Joseph, “Do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit” (Matt. 1:20). And to Mary, the angel Gabriel said, “You will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High” (Lk. 1:31-32).
The way God became man was through a miraculous conception. The Holy Spirit fertilised one of Mary’s eggs, and the resulting embryo was the God-Man, Jesus Christ. The God who made galaxies entered the earth as an embryo. Let that truth detonate in your mind. Let it captivate your heart with awe and wonder. Let it inspire you and remind you that “nothing will be impossible with God” (Lk. 1:37).
The God who made galaxies entered the earth as an embryo
Interestingly, the first person to recognise Jesus was also an unborn baby! Luke 1:41: “And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leapt in her womb.”
There are many reasons why Christians affirm the dignity, value, and sacredness of the unborn. One of them should be that the Son of God entered the world as an unborn baby and was first greeted by an unborn baby.
At Christmas, we remember that God entered the world to save His people through an unborn baby. At all times of the year, we need to pray and work in whatever ways God leads us to for the safety and protection and provision of the unborn in our community. May the grace of the incarnate Son of God help and sustain us in this great work.
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