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The Child Who Was God

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
November 3, 2020 3:00 am

The Child Who Was God

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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November 3, 2020 3:00 am

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Where dealing here, not with a man, not just with a great man were dealing here with the creator and the sustainer of the whole universe whatever is in heaven and on earth, whatever is visible or invisible wall material universe was made by Jesus Christ. The question is why.

Why should you care so much about a baby born in Bethlehem to find out stay here for grace to you as John MacArthur continues his series titled the best of Christmas.

Now before we get to the lesson.

Obviously, the thing dominating the news today is it's election day in the United States and we're casting votes for president and for leaders at every level of government in Jon. I think there are people who are up to their eyes and political talk. I know I am and what would really help us today I think is prayer. So could I ask you to take a couple of minutes here and lead our listeners in praying for our nation yeah and I'm more than happy to do that I would just say to begin with, that Christians don't vote based on political party vote based on righteousness. We vote for those who would be most faithful to God's law. God's standards. That means some people advocate abortion, homosexuality, transgender life, same-sex marriage, any kind of deviation who defy the law of God.

We as believers can't take action that empowers them obviously so that would be the basis of my prayer and let's just take a moment to come before the Lord. Father, I do pray that you would superintend the selection today and for whatever ongoing days that are necessary to get it finalized, and I pray that righteousness would prevail that there would be an abundance of and a majority of candidates put in place who submit to your law who honor what is right and who are against what is wrong, as defined by your revelation in Scripture help Christian people to see the urgency of voting going to the polls and in voting for righteousness.

We know that no candidate is going to bring righteousness into the world. That's for you to do, but at the same time we have to have people in place in our political system, who will uphold righteousness because we know the the nation that upholds righteousness will experience some blessing and protection from your hand, you have called all nations to worship you and to obey you.

So we pray that you would put into place from the presidency all the way down through all the elected officials.

Those people who in the majority would submit to you, honor you as God and submit to your law and uphold it so that our nation might no temporal blessing and in that environment of temporal blessing the church might flourish in your gospel go forth, we ask you to do that for your glory. Men amen thanks John, out front whether you're listening here in the United States or elsewhere.

You don't want to miss the next half hour. As John looks at Christ's birth and the salvation he brought into the world. Here's the lesson I want to look at your Bible to Colossians chapter 1 among all of the passages of Scripture that we might've looked at to see the reality of the child who was God. None is more grand than this one in the first chapter of Colossians and I want you to see a portrait painted by the apostle Paul and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit that gives us a series of strokes that reveal Jesus Christ in each of these five strokes represents a particular relationship.

We see Christ in his relationship to God. Then, in his relationship to the created universe into the unseen world, then to the church and then to all other revelations. Let's start with Jesus in his relation to God.

Verse 15 he is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation in relation to God. Then Jesus is the image of the invisible God. He is the replica they are counting on. Here's the reproduction in Hebrews chapter 1 and verse three it says this making really the same point Jesus is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his nature. He is the radiance of God's glory that is to say he is the shining forth of God.

He is the exact as a writer of Hebrews representation of God's person. He is not only the brightness but he is the essence the substance.

This term images the classical Greek term for a diarist stamp he replicates God.

He is the exact reproduction of God as John tells us in his account of the birth of Christ. We beheld his glory, and what glory was at the glory as of the only begotten of the father full of the same attributes that are characteristic of God.

Paul writing in Philippians 2 says Christ. At one point was in the form of God, but divested himself of of that and came in the form of men. He is the precise copy reproduction replica of God. He is the very substance and essence of God. He is the radiance of God's shining glory in human form. That's why he could say in John 14 nine if you've seen me, you seen the father. In fact, is not just a sketch of God. Verse nine of chapter 2 in Colossians it says in him all the fullness of deity dwells in bodily form and back in verse 19 of chapter 1 all the fullness is caused to dwell in him. In second Corinthians 44.

Paul says Christ who is the image of God he is a full manifestation and revelation of God. Paul wants it crystal clear that there is no equivocation as to the identity of Jesus Christ.

He is God in human flesh anyway you look at it if God were to come into the world as a man, he would come out Jesus Christ and that's the case.

Jesus Christ is the exact reproduction of the invisible God. He makes the invisible God visible. If you trivialize the birth of Christ. As I said earlier, that is a monumental form of blasphemy because it is a striking a blow against the revelation of the eternal God in Christ. Furthermore, verse 15 identifies Jesus as the firstborn of all creation. That is not a reference to time you was that he wasn't the first person born in creation, Adam was made and Eve was formed out of his ribbon and they started having babies. There were plenty of before he was born. It doesn't mean that he was the first person ever born in all of creation what it means is that of all of creation. He is the proton the costs.

That is to say, the ranking one in ancient times firstborn met the error, the supreme one. The superior one, the one with the right of inheritance.

The one with the rights of privilege and prestige and honor. Jacob was not born first, but he was the protonic costs. He was the heir. Perhaps you can understand it.

If you understand Psalm 8927 God says I will also make him my firstborn, the highest of the kings of the earth firstborn being defined as the King of King, the supreme one. Hebrews 1 also speaks of this verse to his son, whom he appointed heir of all things. That's the issue, and that's why in verse three. At the end he sits down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, he sits down on the very throne of God. Paul is saying in relation to God. He is the exact representation of God and of all who have been created. He is the heir he is the supreme one. He is the ranking one he is the ultimate one. Paul declares then that Jesus is God exact replica of God, the supreme being of all who have ever existed. Some people may be confused about whether Jesus claimed this. Certainly the Jewish people at this time weren't they wanted to stone him for blasphemy. John 1033 says because they said you being a man make yourself God. Indeed he was God. Thomas had it right when he reached out his hand and commented, my Lord and my God, look at the second relationship in verses 16 and 17. Not only do we see Jesus and his relationship to God. But in his relationship to the World War II creation. Verse 16 says for by him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, then at the end of the verse.

All things have been created by him and for him and he is before all things and in him all things hold together were dealing here, not with a man, not just with a great man were dealing here with the creator and the sustainer of the whole universe whatever is in heaven and on earth, whatever is visible or invisible. It's all created by him.

It's all created before before him.

He is before all of it, and in all and him all of it hangs together is a creator and again that is exactly what we read in Hebrews 12 through whom also he made the world more literally DOP by whom he made the world a whole universe the whole cosmos, the whole material universe was made by Jesus Christ. Verse 16.

At the end, all things have been created by him and for him for his own good, in his own pleasure in his own purposes.

He is before all things, had to be before all things, we could've created and that is to say Jesus is preexistent. He was alive before the incarnation, and in him all things hold together he was before the creation because he was the creator.

He is the one who holds it all together. He is the cohesion we don't accept the DS view that he wound up the world and walked away. He holds it together.

Hebrews 13 says he's upholding all things by the word of his power. He's the principle of cohesion. He's what keeps everything moving keeps everything in orbit.

You understand that you understand that the bodies in the universe in the universe don't stay in their orbits. Just because they stay in their orbits. They stay in their orbits because he keeps them there and you understand that when you go down and you look inside and Adam and you're looking for the components of an atom in a neutron and a proton and electron are doing exactly what they're doing inside and Adam. Not because there's something about them that sustains itself, but there is a God who is making them function in that way consistently who sustains the delicate balance is Jesus Christ. He is before all things and in him all things cohere all things hold together and all that was in the manger creator, sustainer, before all things, this child is the beginning of creation the end of creation, the upholder of creation and the goal of creation look thirdly at his relationship to the unseen world in the middle of verse 16. All things were created by him, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities.

Now those terms are familiar to any student of the New Testament because they are indicative of ranks of angels you will see those terms. A number of times in Paul's writing several times in his letter to the church at Ephesus what it tells us is that he is the creator and the king over all the angels, thrones, dominions, rulers or authorities just talk about the strata or the ranks of angels. He is over them all the highest angelic princes are subject to Jesus Christ, whether they be seraphim or cherubim or whether they be demons or Satan himself, the very angels, who said that night. Glory to God in the highest were the servants of the baby in the manger. They had been created by him angels whether elect angels. Holy angels are fallen angels are subject to Christ, they would not exist apart from his creative power, and they could not continue to exist apart from his sustaining power in Hebrews again. Chapter 1 in verse seven it says that he makes his angels wins. It's talking about a creative act and his ministers a flame of fire, but of the son he says thy throne old God is forever and ever. When God made angels by his creative act when Christ made angels by his creative act.

He made the ministers that's a word for servants, but when God sent his son. He wasn't a servant, he said, thy throne old God is forever and ever. And the Angels worship him because he is the sovereign verse six when he again brings the firstborn into the world. He says and let all the angels of God worship him. Angels are servants.

He is the one to be served. He is the king.

He is the sovereign. There is 1/4 relationship here that I would point out to you. Look at verse 18 we have seen Jesus in his relation to God to the created universe and to the unseen world of angels.

Now Jesus and his relationship to the church is also head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he himself might come to have first place in everything some tremendous truths are. He is the head of the body, the church biblically. The metaphor of the body is often used. The church is like a body and Christ is like its head. That's comprehensible to us. It means what we would assume it means the ability to produce growth in your brain at the base of your skull as a small cavity in that cavity is contained a gland that is called the pituitary gland is related to growth. It carries the growth hormone, among others, that stimulate growth and growth of the body is directly related to the power provided by the head.

Our cerebrum controls parts of the body cerebellum has been called the harmonizer of muscle action, all the functions of the human body are under the control of the brain, both voluntary and involuntary. They are stimulated by what goes on in the head growth guidance and certainly all the thought processes are contained in the mind and the head but give the direction to all that we do and say and think and that simply illustrates the fact that Christ is the source of all truth, all knowledge, all wisdom, all growth and all guidance in his church is the head of the church.

Secondly he says he is the beginning. He is the beginning of the church. He is the source of the church.

Matthew 16 Jesus said I will build my church that is the idea here. The church is the creation of Christ, he is the source of its existence.

Truthfully, it's most prominent member by virtue of resurrection which we shall see in immediately. In a moment. He is the RK. He is the pioneer. He is the forerunner he is the leader. He is the source of the church, not just its head, but it's creator source and then follow along in verse 18. He is also the firstborn from the dead. There's that protonic us again. It's not that he's the first person ever resurrected. There were people in the Old Testament resurrected. There were people that Jesus raised from the dead before he himself was resurrected. Were not talking about first in time, but of all who have ever been raised or ever will be raised. He is the protonic cost. He is the supreme one. Here Paul zeros in on the resurrection. He was born but he was raised from the dead, the firstfruits of them that slept. His resurrection is a guarantee of the ultimate resurrection into eternal life of all men is not a dead hero. He is a resurrected God man in a ball or whatever come from the dead. He is the supreme one. The superior one.

You can't dismiss Jesus as some dead historical figure.

He is alive.

He is the head of the body, the church.

He is the source, the initiator of the body, the church, and he has given birth from death to the whole church by his own resurrection as a result of all of these things.

As a result of being the very reproduction and replica of the invisible God, the most ranking individual of all those created as a result of being the creator himself, who made everything in the universe, visible and invisible. As a result of being the sovereign over all the spiritual world. As a result of being sovereign in leader and authority and source and life for the church the end of verse 18 says he himself has come to have first place in everything he is absolutely preeminent, and it stands to reason doesn't at that one who is first in rank in the universe who is point of reference to his agent goal forerunner sustainer governor in the sphere of creation, one who is head of the church. Beginning in first in rank of those resurrected would be the preeminent one how inconceivable it is, then, to have a holiday in which we celebrate and try at the same time to ignore the one who is the reason we celebrate and when you're ignoring someone it's not just some historical personality but rather the living God. And then just to make sure nothing gets left out after having set it all in verse 19, Paul adds a word about Jesus and his relationship to all of the revelations. It was the father's good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in him, all the powers of deity. All the attributes of deity. Verse three of chapter 2 says all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Verse nine says all the fullness of deity. Everything is in him. Everything is in him. He is the fullness of God's essence, God's glory. And it's in him and him alone and that is to say if somebody comes along.

After this, and says I'm God.

Don't believe it. He needs no supplement, he has no rivals.

There are no more revelations. It's in him and him alone. The God has put all the fullness of his own deity because it pleased him to do that on the closing question is why in the answer comes in verse 20.

Listen, and through him to reconcile all things to himself, having made peace through the blood of his cross.

Through him I say were the things on earth are things in heaven and although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind engage in evil deeds. Yet he has now reconciled you in his fleshly body through death in order to present you before him. Holy and blameless and beyond reproach why did Christ come into the world to save sinners to go across the shed his blood through death pay the price for sin in order that he might present you to God, holy and blameless and beyond reproach. He came to gather a redeemed humanity to take back to God became into the world to save sinners. That's why he was to be called. Jesus came to bring reconciliation between sinners in a holy God. He came to remove the curse of the universe and reconcile the universe to its original intended created purpose.

He came so that he might gather together men and women like you and like me and all the others. Throughout all of human history that God set his hand upon, and to gather them together and present them to God, holy and blameless and beyond reproach.

He came to save from sin and bring us to God, to reconcile the lost took our flesh in him, that we might become holy as he is holy tremendous truth is Joab you remember in the Old Testament pleaded for Absalom, the wayward rebels son and brought them to David and David kissed him, so Jesus Christ brings us to the kiss of God so that we might be reconcile. This is the meaning of Christmas. Nothing lasts, and certainly nothing more sad thing in our culture that Christmas, on the one hand is trivialized and on the other hand, it is assaulted in an effort to remove the only thing about it that is important, eternally important and I think in closing, it behooves us at a time like this to take every opportunity we can to make sure the people do understand what Christmas is really all about. I'm not defending December 25 as if it were the day the Jesus were born that's very unlikely I'm not defending all of the stuff that goes on around Christmas but I am saying. If the world is going to give us an opportunity to focus on the birth of Jesus Christ. Let's take advantage of us take advantage of it. In order to worship and praise him because that's right. In order to speak to those who so much need to hear, foolish, foolish people who want to eliminate Jesus Christ keep the party just get rid of the reason.

In so doing their effort to gain the world, and lose their soul with the tremendous responsibility to this is grace to you with John MacArthur. Thanks for being with us. John is been our featured speaker since 1969. He's also Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary's current study is titled the best of Christmas now friend. If you are grateful for lessons like today's. Keep in mind that these radio broadcasts exist because of the faithful support of listeners like you to partner with us, make a donation when you contact us today. You can mail your tax-deductible gift to Grace to you. Box 4000 panorama city, CA 91412. You can also give online@ourwebsitejidety.org or when you call toll-free 855 grace and that number translates to 800-554-7223.

Thanks for your help in taking God's word to individual believers and strengthening local churches across the globe. Also, friend.

Don't forget, for a limited time nearly all our Bible study resources are on sale for 25% off the regular price now is a ideal time to get started on Christmas shopping get gifts that will bless your loved ones all year long. Items like the MacArthur study Bible for John's book on parables and the MacArthur New Testament commentary series to see all that's on sale and place your order. Call 855 grace or go to our website TTY.board again.

Our number here 805 five grace and our website TTY.board now on behalf of John MacArthur this is Phil Johnson.

Thanks for making grace to you part of your day. Invite a friend to join you tomorrow when John continues his series. The best of Christmas with another half hour of unleashing God's true one verse at a time on grace to you


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