In our household, Christmas doesn’t seem like Christmas until the tree is set up and the angel graces the top. Dressed in a white dress with feathery wings, our ceramic angel looks a bit like Elsa from Frozen. She’s a total sissy if you ask me.
During the Christmas season it may be easy to forget about how awesome angels were when we’re surrounded by chubby cherubs or Elsa look-alikes, but, Moms, we’d be doing our sons a disservice if we didn’t reveal angels according to the true Biblical account. We have a lot we can teach our boys about this. The real angels were very cool dudes who ushered in the answer for the greatest mystery of the universe.
“And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear.” Luke 2:8-9 (ESV).
Church Christmas pageants aren’t complete without adorable children dressed in angel costumes declaring, “Glory to God in the Highest and peace on earth and good will to men.” The angels sent by God, however made the shepherds very afraid. These were no princesses in pretty dresses–they displayed the power and glory of their Creator.
When the shepherds headed to the hills with the sheep that night, they didn’t expect to meet eternal messengers. Angels in the Bible are exactly that: messengers. They take the words of God and deliver them to men. Their words are not their own. They only speak what God tells them.
These messengers were eternal beings. They were created by God and were witnesses to the earthly struggles. Angelic messengers were sent many times in history, but never with good news such as this:
And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger,” (ESV).
That was their message: God was coming to earth as a man. The immortal was becoming mortal. An unbelievable message indeed!
The Mortal Discovered
Can you picture the angel’s whispered awe when they witnessed the babe in the manger, “He has his Father’s eyes.” Jesus was everything they knew God to be, and something completely new too: flesh.
“For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ,” says Colossians 1:19 (NLT). Christ in His human nature was the visible essence of the invisible God. The very angels who worshipped God on His throne witnessed God cloaking himself in flesh by becoming a frail babe.
God-come-to-earth became alive as a man. As everyone knows, what lives can also die. God, who was eternal became mortal. But why? What would make God lower himself in such a way? The clue was in the words they proclaimed.
“And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” Luke 2:10-14 (ESV)
The reason for the birth was peace on earth. Not the peace like men and women have prayed for—begged for. Even 2,000 years after Jesus’ birth there are still fights and wars and battles between (and within) men.
Instead, because God chose to live as a mortal, and die as one too, sin and death were overcome.
The mystery was that the angel’s praises weren’t just for that night, but for all time … and for all people (<<—Tweet That). Angels were sent to deliver the best news ever: God made into mortal man made a way for all men—not just Jews during that generation—to become children of the one and only God.
The Mystery is for US
God lived in soft, smooth baby skin, and because of God’s mission when we believe in Jesus He’ll live in us, too.
As Colossians 1:27 says, “This message was kept secret for centuries and generations past, but now it has been revealed to God’s people. For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory,”(NLT).
Christmas wouldn’t have been Christmas without God’s angels hovering over the Judean hillsides. The angels had the coolest job in the business if you ask me … tell that to your sissy, feather-winged angel on the tree this year!
Or better yet, remember this:
Glory to God and peace on earth.
Peace for everyone.
Christ in us.
UnWrapping the Gift
- Does your Christmas tradition incorporate angel decorations?
- How could you better convey the role of the angels’ to your boys?
Tricia Goyer is a busy mom of six, grandmother of two, and wife to John. Somewhere around the hustle and bustle of family life, she manages to find the time to write fictional
tales delighting and entertaining readers and non-fiction titles offering encouragement and hope. A bestselling author, Tricia has published over thirty books to date and has written more than 500 articles. She is a two time Carol Award winner, as well as a Christy and ECPA Award Nominee. In 2010, she was selected as one of the Top 20 Moms to Follow on Twitter by SheKnows.com. Tricia is also on the blogging team at MomLifeToday.com, TheBetterMom.com and other homeschooling and Christian sites.
In addition to her roles as mom, wife and author, Tricia volunteers around her community and mentors teen moms. She is the founder of Hope Pregnancy Ministries in Northwestern Montana, and she currently leads a Teen MOPS Group in Little Rock, AR. Tricia, along with a group of friends, recently launched www.NotQuiteAmishLiving.com, sharing ideas about simplifying life. She also hosts the weekly radio podcast, Living Inspired. Learn more about Tricia at www.triciagoyer.com.