“Because of our God’s deep compassion, the dawn from heaven will break upon us, to give light to those who are sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide us on the path of peace.” Luke 1:78-79 CEB
The word because assumes that there is a reason something is happening. We painted our house because the old paint had worn off. It means something is taking place for a specific purpose. We went to the car dealership because there was a leak in our transmission. I go to work because I need money for my house, food, and clothes. Whenever we see the word because we should make sure we understand why. What is the reason? In church we celebrate Advent because we are preparing our hearts to receive anew the newborn King. The four weeks of Advent give us time to contemplate anew the reason we sing Come Thou Long Expected Jesus. We are contemplating the why behind Jesus’ birth. The Why is more important than the what in some cases.
Christian comedian Michael Jr. explains the difference that takes place when you know the why and not just the what. Something very profound happens when people know the why! Take a moment and watch this YouTube video of Michael Jr. explaining this concept.
The why is more important than the what in most things in life.
How is the why more important than the what? Even when we are discussing Advent and Christmas the why is more important than the what. Jesus was one of many babies born that night. I would argue that many were born in less than sterile environments. When we think about the what, a child was born, plain and simple. As we then think about the how we begin to see some things that stand out. Jesus was born of a virgin mother. Jesus was born on a night where there was a brilliant star directly over his place of birth. We still have not come to the why. The why of Jesus’ birth is where the importance is held. This child of a virgin mother, born under a brilliant star, visited by shepherds and wise men was the savior of the world. Jesus came into the world “because of our God’s deep compassion.” Luke tells us further that Jesus came because people needed to know how “to be saved through the forgiveness of their sins.” The because is extremely important. Jesus came because people were sinning, straying far away from God. Jesus came because there was no way for people to get themselves out of this sin predicament. Jesus came because the only way for the sin predicament to be resolved was forgiveness. Finally, Jesus came because God knew all of this, and because God loves us God made a way for us to be saved. The because is love made a way for “the dawn from heaven” to “break upon us, to give light to those who are sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide us on the path of peace.”
Jesus came to earth because … ! This Advent season take time to ponder the why. Not just the why in the greater sense, but the why in your life. Jesus came to earth because my life needed to be saved. Do you believe that you are still a sinner in need of the Savior? What in your life needs to be saved, redeemed, transformed, or renewed? If Jesus came to bring light into darkness, where do you need the dawn from heaven to break into your life? Where do you need Jesus to give light to you? Where are you sitting in the darkness? Why did Jesus come to earth? Jesus came to earth because you and I need him! We need a Savior—Jesus!
What is your because?
This weekend at all four worship services we continue the Advent message series Prepare the Way. John was one who came to prepare the way. As we now know, this was in preparation of the coming of Jesus the Messiah. This weekend we will discuss how God’s love always finds a way. I hope you will join us this weekend and every weekend. The best is yet to come for St. Andrew’s as we are on mission together. I can’t wait to see you in church!