‘Silent night, holy night’ is a favourite carol, but
silence should be the last thing you associate with
Christmas – the tearing of wrapping paper, the
whoops of delight (or dismay) as contents are
discovered, not to mention the shrieks from the
kitchen when it all goes wrong!
It wasn’t very silent that first Christmas Day either.
Any trip to a maternity ward will tell you that
childbirth is not silent. And the Bible’s account of
Jesus’ birth is full of noise – the joyful singing of the
angels, the hustle & bustle of the shepherds, other
well-wishers arriving and passing on the news.
No, the arrival of Jesus was not silent. But most
significantly it was noisy because God was speaking
as never before. The full text quoted on the front
cover says: ‘In the past God spoke to our forefathers
through the prophets at many times and in various
ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by
his Son’ (Hebrews 1:1,2)
The writer says that in the past God was speaking in
lots of different ways, bit by bit, revealing more of his
plan (what we know as the Old Testament). But now,
in the birth of Jesus, God was speaking as never
before. Now he has spoken in a final and decisive
way – Jesus is God’s last word to the human race!
When Professor Chris Whitty speaks, there is
nothing more to be said – he is the expert! Well,
Jesus is God’s final Word- there is nothing to be
added, nothing more that needs to be said. People
sometimes say ‘Why can’t I meet God in a burning
bush like Moses did? Then I really would believe!’ but
who are we to dictate terms to God? when he has
wonderfully spoken to us by his Son?
That’s why there is no more ‘up to date’
message! It’s why we go back to events of 2000 years ago, with a
message 2000 years old – there has never been an ‘upgrade’, it has never been
needed. Jesus is God’s final Word.
So the brilliant news of Christmas is that God has
spoken once and for all in the coming of his Son. And
if that is so, then we must surely listen, in the place
where God has spoken. When our daughter phones
up from Australia we are desperate to get hold of
the phone – Sarah is speaking and we want to hear!
Is it not amazing that the Creator of the universe
should choose to speak to us? What better Word to
hear than that!
So let me invite you to our Christmas services this
year to hear God speaking to you, and continuing
into 2022 as, week by week, we look at the Bible (see
back page) – the immense privilege of God speaking
May God give us listening ears!