Sermon by Bishop Michael Hawkins
(The readings may be found here)
The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father full of grace and truth.
The three Christmas Evangelists tell us that Jesus Christ was born to us. He would die for us and is with us always. “Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given,” Isaiah prophesied, and in Luke we hear the angel announce, “Unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord.” St. Matthew teaches us that Jesus is the one who shall save his people from their sins, the Christ who will die for us. And St. John teaches us that Jesus is our Immanuel, which means God with us, the Word made flesh dwelling among us. Jesus Christ was born to us, he died for us, and he lives with us always. Jesus is God to us and for us and with us. This is the Good News of his birth.
The Incarnation is God’s great owning of us. We disowned him long ago and still do, but he owns us, claims us as his own, comes to claim us in our flesh and blood. We are adopted by God in Christ, claimed as his own children in and through Jesus Christ. In him who is the Son of God and Son of Mary, the Word made flesh, we behold a glory divine, and when we see his glory, we come to recognize our own!
When we behold the glory of the only begotten Son of God, we know ourselves as the adopted children of God. We behold by faith and we receive by faith, born to us, died for us and with us always, the Word made flesh, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, our Lord and Saviour.