How do you feel, ten days before Christmas?
And the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple.
It’s official. I’m exhausted.
As I write this, it’s a late afternoon and a week and half before Christmas.
I haven’t lost my Christmas spirit of joy, but my body seems to be sending me telegrams to take a rest.
A concept comes to mind. Pace yourself.
When a person has several things on their calendar every day between now and Christmas, the need to pace yourself is important.
Another thing that is important is proper diet and exercise. That will also help keep the body from getting exhausted.
Now, I have to admit, I just wrote that munching on a Christmas cookie!
But I have also been exercising and eating cookies in moderation!
Taking care of both body and mind is important. A lack of nutrition and exercise will lead to being exhausted more often.
I’m reminded that Jesus Christ came the first time at Christmas in the flesh. He did not come as just a spirit. At Christmas, he came to be a human being. He came to save us – body and soul.
God became human. The “church” word for this is “incarnation.”
Jesus came to save us all from sin and eternal damnation.
But in order to do this, he had to become a human being just like us. Our salvation would be a – and here’s another “church” word – vicarious atonement.
This means that Jesus took our place under God’s Law and judgement for breaking that Law.
Jesus is true God in order to keep the Law of God perfectly.
Jesus is true man in order to take our place in the punishment due for not keeping the Law.
Jesus does it all for us as a free gift. He takes our sins on himself and suffers the wrath of God. This frees us from our sins!
Jesus gives us his righteousness that takes the place of our sins. In this righteousness, we respond to God’s love for us by serving him and loving others.
Jesus did all this for our souls, no doubt.
But Jesus also did this for our bodies. We are a package: body and soul. Jesus saves both!
In the Bible, our bodies are referred to as temples.
St. Paul writes, “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20, emphasis added).
This is part of the meaning of Malachi’s prophecy about the coming the Messiah, when he will suddenly come to his temple.
Sure, it means that Jesus will come to the Temple in Jerusalem.
But Jesus also comes to each one of us. He lives in us, giving us his righteousness. His righteousness takes the place of the sin he forgives.
When I get tired, I remember this. Jesus gives me strength to carry on the work he called me to do.
With joy and gladness, especially at this time of year.
If you are tired, take a moment to rest, relax, and read some of God’s Word.
You’ll find your soul revitalize and you must may find your body reenergized.
Heavenly Father, as the celebration of Christmas continues to get closer, help me – by the power of the Holy Spirit – to find peace, strength, and rest as your Son, Jesus, comes to the temple of my heart. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
©2017 True Men Ministries