Google+ 04/25/14 There is No Easter Without Christmas!

Philippians 2:4-9

 

Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.

You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.

Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.
Instead, he gave up his divine privileges;

He took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being.
When he appeared in human form,
He humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.

Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor
    And gave him the name above all other names.

 

One of the major revelations of Easter for me is always what Christ gave up for all of us.  It is often overlooked because of the focus on the crucifixion.   The vivid picture of the pain and agony of Jesus hanging on the cross usually overshadows every other aspect of His life.  For a moment, let's look at Easter in a different light.  In order to do that, we must focus on Christmas!  No, I haven't completely lost my marbles!!!  To fully understand how much Christ loved each of us, we must go back to the beginning.  Paul states it so well as he talks with the Philippians.  Christ never once thought about His divinity.  He gave all of that up to become human and walk with each of us here on earth.  It was only this great sacrifice that permitted Him to die a criminal's death on the cross.  If not for this one act of obedience, more powerful than all the rest, Christ would, and could, have done all that people said He could.  He could have called a league of angels to rescue Him.  He could have called on God to destroy all His enemies and make Him the earthly "King of the Jews."  Judas, Pilate, Herod, and the chief priests would have been right and they could have made the excuse that Jesus was just another "god."  It was Christ's sacrifice to no longer be "supernatural," that made Easter such an important time.  It was only after Christ's ultimate sacrifice, death, and burial that His divinity was restored through the resurrection.  In your prayer time today, contemplate the immense love of Christ that He displayed for each of us, as we realize what He gave up.  Most importantly, never forget that "There is No Easter Without Christmas!"