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Our Down to Earth God

“I really like that person – (s)he is so down-to-earth!”

Such a compliment reflects our desire for people to be humble, not haughty; to be interested in ordinary people and to be genuine. To be described as a ‘down-to-earth’ person is high praise, since it describes a highly valued character trait.

Christmas is about the down-to-earth God. When Jesus was born of Mary, in a borrowed stable, something unique in human history took place.

God who is the powerful Creator and sustainer of the universe, the all-knowing observer of every person’s heart, did not distance Himself from us or ignore us or write us off (as our sin deserved) but came amongst us in great and gracious humility. There is nothing as down-to-earth as a baby except when the baby happens to be God the Son. There is nothing sentimental about Christmas, nothing glitzy, but it is about a very down-to-earth event, the kind that the earth had never experienced before or since.

Jesus was (indeed, is) the master of the universe but He did not come to a palace. He is the One through whom all wisdom is given but He did not come as a philosopher. Rather, He took on human nature (without surrendering His Divinity) and humbly lived amongst us. The down-to-earth Saviour, after giving us a real glimpse of what God is like, has made it possible for us earth dwellers to become citizens of Heaven. No greater prospect could be held out to us, and all because of the down-to-earth God.

Christmas has no real rhyme or reason unless we understand who Jesus is. Make no bones about it; the down-to-earth God is the Lord of the Universe. A ‘No’ response is a rejection of God’s love, whereas a humble response of repentance, gratitude and trust is what God both desires and requires. A ‘No’ response – or, no response… – invites God’s judgement, whereas a hearty ‘Yes’ to Jesus unlocks the door to countless blessings that will continually transform our earthly toils, troubles and uncertainties.

If we admire a down-to-earth person we must also admire the down-to-earth God of Christmas. But admiration of Jesus is not enough. Only the acceptance of His right to rule our lives in all things is appropriate.