Celebrating Christmas in Early July

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For to us a child is born, to us a son is given

, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this. Isa. 9:6–7

Lord Jesus, no passages exist as the private domain of the Christmas season. There’s just you, and your magnificent story of redemption and restoration. Today, on this muggy July morning in Franklin, TN, I’m glad to remind myself and my praying friends why you came and what you’re up to right now.

The government of the entire cosmos is already sitting squarely upon your shoulders. Nothing happens apart from your sovereign doings and delight. We don’t have to be vexed over a nuclear-armed Iran any more than we have to be defined by a lousy golf game. You were before all things, and in you all things are held together (Col. 1:17). Everything in heaven and on earth is being summed up in you (Eph. 1:10).

You are Wonderful Counselor—that is, our “wisdom from God, our righteousness, holiness, and redemption” (1 Cor. 1:30). There is no salvation apart from you. It’s the gospel or despair. You are Mighty God—eternally one with the Father, co-equal, co-glorious, along with the Holy Spirit. You never “try” to do anything, as though failure is a possibility.

You are Everlasting Father—the Son who perfectly reveals the Father’s image and riches to us. It’s because of you, Jesus, that we’ve been adopted into God’s family and given all the rights and delights of the children of God. You are Prince of Peace—by your life and death, you made peace between God and us. You yourself are our peace, Jesus; you destroyed the hostile barrier that stood between us (Eph. 2:14–15).

Right now, on this July Wednesday, you are making all things new and putting all things right. Justice and righteousness are coming to every place where sin and death have done their worst. Thank you, and Hallelujah! So very Amen we pray, in your triumphant and tender name.

 

 

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