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   Jesus’ family were poor folks, just “blue collar” working people.  We know that by the sacrificial offering that they took to the temple at Mary’s purification.

“And if she is not able to bring a lamb, then she may bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons…So the priest shall make atonement for her, and she will be clean” (Leviticus 12:8).

“Now when the days of her [Mary] purification according to the law of Moses were completed, they brought Him [Jesus] to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord….and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, ‘A pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons’ ” (Luke 2:22, 24). 

One day as He was traveling, someone said to Jesus, “Lord, I will follow You wherever You go.”  But Jesus replied, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head” (Luke 9:57-58).  The King of kings didn’t have an earthly palatial bedroom to retire to at the end of a weary day of walking and teaching.

“Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:6-8).

When Jesus was going to Jerusalem on His death march toward the city, crowds accompanied Him shouting “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! The King of Israel” (John 12:13); accolades of praise to Him.  They waved palm branches in His honor, thinking He was at this time ready to assume the throne and overthrow the tyranny of the Roman government.  They just didn't understand that while He was indeed fully human, He was the Son of God who would free them from the bondage of sin; not the cruel Roman government.

Looking down at Jerusalem one day, He wept, “If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace!  But now they are hidden from your eyes” (Luke 19:41-42).  "Poor" Jesus was rejected by His own who "received Him not" (John 1:11).

 He had been their “Man of the Hour” as they joined the triumphal march into Jerusalem, but now the “Hosanna” crowd-cry changed to “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!”  They followed Him from trial to trial, observed the beatings, saw the mocking robe placed on his raw bleeding back.  They saw the thorns from the mocking crown pierce His brow and their eyes beheld Him being hit on the head with a stick they had mockingly placed in His hands as a scepter.  They saw the bloody ribbons of quivering muscle tissue hanging from His battered body.

The very ones He came to redeem rejected Him as Savior.  When Pilate suggested that he let Jesus go, they refused that offer and demanded a criminal be released instead.  “Crucify Him, crucify Him!” they cried.

Let us look at what Jesus came to earth to accomplish.

Under the Old Covenant, consciousness of sin didn’t leave as a result of the substitutionary sacrifice of animals for sin.  That sacrifice only covered the sins of the people and then only from year to year.  Every year, the high priest had to offer sacrifices again, send the scape goat into the wilderness, symbolically carrying their sins.  Daily sacrifices were offered on the temple altar; daily rituals of the priests were carried out to stay the judgment of God until another Day of Atonement arrived.

Now a new day had dawned; Jesus bought it with His blood!  The ultimate, perfect Day of Atonement was accomplished--at Calvary!

“For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins” (Hebrews 10:4).  “But this Man [Jesus] after He had offered one sacrifice [Himself] for sins forever, sat down [work completed] at the right hand of God…For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified…Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more” (Hebrews 10:12, 14,17).

Jesus became poor so we could become rich—in Him!  He left His riches and the splendors of Heaven, came to earth as a baby in a poor family, was born in a barn (probably a cave used for animal shelter) without the assistance of an attending physician.  His birth could have been in the king’s palace, tended by servants for His every need and want, but He was born poor, lived a Spartan life and associated with the poor.  He offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for our sins and died a pauper’s death on the cruel cross; His blood spilled to take away our sins.

Having completed His Father's will, “Poor Jesus” is now sitting at the right hand of God the Father, exercising His authority to make us heirs of the priceless gift He became poor to purchase.  That purchase cost Him everything!  Because He gave His all, we are joint-heirs to all that our Father God has.  That is quite beyond human comprehension!  It matters not if we have little or an abundance of this world’s goods, that’s not where our wealth lies.  Everything on this earth is temporal, subject to decay, ruin and loss.  Our true wealth is ensconced in a bank that will never fail, never have illegal transactions endangering our treasures and is drawing interest that we can spend now.

 “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth, And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9-11).

 His poverty brought great riches—beyond measure--to those who bow now and proclaim Him Lord.  "Poor" Jesus fully accomplished what He came to do:  Procure eternal salvation for those who bow to his Lordship.  Those who don't bow and acknowledge Him now, will bow, but to their damnation.  It is absolutely inevitable that everyone will bow and proclaim "Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father"!

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord, and this shall be a sign unto you, Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger, 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, good will toward men” (Luke 2:11-14).

“Poor Jesus” is no longer a pauper on earth; He is King of Kings, Lord of Lords and will be forever!

“Poor” Jesus gave the greatest, most expensive, most precious gift of all time—Himself!  He expressed the love that His Father had for those whom Jesus loved~~

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3:16).

And that’s the “real” meaning of Christmas!




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