Why Jesus Came As A Baby
Babies love other babies. Before our little E could walk, she was nurturing her own baby doll and calling other kids her age a baby and giggling with excitement. I don’t think she realized that she was a baby herself. Even today, she also calls anything miniature a baby. Is there a smaller cracker in her cup? That baby cracker is getting a bottle from E. The tiny plant outside gets a balloon, and the little pillow needs a hat. To her, babies are small, weak, need nurturing, super adorable, and are very relatable. This is why I love how she can start grasping the concept of Christmas. Even our little girl can understand that Christmas is about baby Jesus. God reveals big things to small people, and even became a small person himself. If Jesus came down in his full glory and power, little E might be terrified instead of delighted. Here are a few reasons why Jesus came to us as a baby and not in his awesome chariot of fire:
A Baby Is Like The Kingdom Of Heaven
From what I can tell about all the parables about kingdom of heaven, it is sneaky. The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, the smallest of seeds growing into the biggest of garden plants (Matthew 13:31). The kingdom of heave is like leaven that a woman took and hid in sixty pounds of flour (Matthew 13:33). The kingdom of heaven looks like a baby in a manger. Seemingly small and helpless, but unexpectedly great and powerful.
A Baby Understands Our Weakness
“This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin.” Hebrews 4:15 (NLT)
Every time we rock our little girl to sleep (yes, we still rock our almost two year old to sleep), we sing “Jesus loves me” to her. In the song, we tell her that children are weak but Jesus is strong. Jesus became weak so he could become our strong. Jesus had to endure the trauma of birth itself, the knee scrapes and tears of toddlerhood, the mockery of grade school children, the teenager hormones, transition into a career, betrayal of friends, poverty and physical pain. He lived life in all its raw moments so he could be a tender friend in our rough times. Jesus is a friend, but he is also a high priest. He is not like the Pope who you have little chance of taking a picture with, let alone having a conversation with or presenting a plea. Jesus is a great High Priest who not only understands what we are going through, but has the power to help us in our time of need (Hebrews 4:16).
A Baby Is Humble
Relying on someone else to wipe your snot and change your diapers is a pretty humble place to be in. Jesus put himself in that place when we came to the world as a baby. He put himself in the place of humility throughout his whole life—he was the son of a middle class family, became a carpenter, made friends with the outcasts of society, told people not to tell others about his miracles, and let people murder him for our sake. But we cannot mistake humility for weakness.
The kingdom of heaven is small like a mustard seed, but it has infinite growth and cannot be lost or destroyed. The kingdom of heaven is alive like the leaven in the flour, but it fully satisfies our souls and does not leave us hungry. The kingdom of heaven is like a humble baby, but it is saves our souls and is not helpless.
Jesus became weak to empathize with our every weakness, and he humbled himself to the point of death not to be a doormat but to be a bridge (Philippians 2:8). Jesus’ humility as a baby made a way to the Father when there was no way (John 14:6). There was no one else who could do what Jesus did. No one else could have been born from a virgin, live a sinless life, and die a perfect death. No one expected that from a humble newborn in a manger from the small town of Bethlehem.
This Baby Fulfills All Prophecies
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6
“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14
Maybe if Isaiah never wrote down those prophecies then Jesus could have come to earth in bright and shining glory, Ironman style. But the fact that he did write them shows that God was telling those with ears to hear how he would come into the world. The people who did know God’s Word were the Pharisees, but they were too hard-hearted and stubborn to believe it. The people who did believe that Jesus was God had faith, just as we have faith that a mustard seed can turn into a tree, or that a lump of dough can make many loaves, or that one tiny baby can bring the whole world to God the Father and make us his brothers and sisters, co-heirs to the kingdom of heaven.
And finally, Jesus came as a baby so we could celebrate his birthday every year and eat cake and light advent candles and give each other presents and laugh and enjoy each other. He deserves a good birthday celebration!
Can you think of any other reasons why Jesus came as a baby?
Why is the baby Jesus significant during your Christmas celebration?