Reflections on the Christmas Child: The King of Israel

Reflections on the Christmas Child: The King of Israel December 11, 2023


“Praise God for the Son of David!

Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord!

Praise God in highest heaven!”

This is what the people were shouting as a well-known rabbi came riding into the city of Jerusalem on a donky. He was humble, wise, taught in parables so that some can understand and some couldn’t, and preached a message of repentence and faith. His Kingdom wasn’t of this world. And yet… it was in some regard. His Kingdom he inherited was both human and divine, both of heaven and earth, as He was both Son of God and Son of Man. This King, from a backwater town in Judah, would challenge the teachers of the Law, would cause kings to fall away, and would start a movement that would topple the values of the most dominant empire known to history.


This Baby is a King

It was night, and these men travelled a long way to their destination. Visitors from the east, Magi, Royal Astrologers, arrived to the home of Mary, Joseph, and their son, Jesus, to pay homage to the new King of Israel. They expected Jesus to be near a star and the the cheif priests and teachers of the law,  informed by the prophet Micah, told a very disturbed King Herod the location of this newborn king: Bethlehem in Judah.

Herod shared this information with the travellers and they went and worshipped the newborn Jesus. How strange, isn’t it? That these royal wanderers would travel so far across desert sands to pay respect to a Lord that is not their own. Did they not know that He was of Jewish descent? From David’s line? And did they know that they , most certainly, were not?


Would You Worship a Baby?

The Implications here are big in the world of the Jews. These visitors of the East weren’t the norm of Jesus’ followers through His ministry. They were well off. They came with 3 gifts of huge value and paid homage to Jesus. They, in fact, bowed down and worshipped this baby. And, to top it all off, they were Gentiles. They were non-Jews. They were unclean. And yet they were some of the first who would come to know the newborn King.

Would you worship a baby? Would you spend time paying homage to a king that was born in a manger? Perhaps, you would travel miles and miles, weeks and weeks, to reach a house in a broken-down town of Judah to pay homage to a king whose land you did not belong?


Riding on a Donkey

“Tell the people of Jerusalem

‘Look, your King is coming to you.

He is humble, riding on a donkey—
riding on a donkey’s colt.’” – Matthew 21: 5 quoting Zechariah 9:9
This was the prophecy that Jesus fulfilled when entering Jerusalem on a donkey. The King of Israel was expected to enter this way. Thus, Jesus at least understood Himself to be a very certain someone: The King of Israel who would restore His people.
As we close in on the Christmas season, let’s remember that this baby was special. This baby that we celebrate this December 25th is more than a simple child in a manger. He is more than a swaddled child. But this baby was a king who would unite both Jew and Gentile alike.
He would welcome the rich, of course. But, he would uplift the poor in a way that was counter to everything that the Roman Empire would understand. He would welcome Jews, yes. But he would also welcome Romans, Greeks, Samaritins, Ethiopians, and those of all peoples and tongues.
His kingdom was on earth. But the divinity of His kingship would unite us all into a promised hope of heaven, where the magic and celebration of this season would be shared for an eternity.
Remember Our King.

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Here is a link to our last article as we reflect on Jesus being both Messiah and Son of Man.


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