Branch News

December 2015


The Day Star Dawns

The Day Star Dawns

“So we have the prophetic word strongly confirmed. You will do well to pay attention to it, as to a lamp shining in a dismal place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.” 2 Peter 1:19 (HCSB)

The prophecies pointed to the Messiah coming to Israel. But hundreds of years had gone by with not even a word from the Lord. That makes the moment even more dramatic. In a dark and dismal place a pinpoint of light appeared. An angel spoke to a young Israeli woman.

Her name was Mary and even though she was descended from the royal line of the kings of Israel, she was insignificant in the world’s eyes. God doesn’t look on the outward appearance but on the heart.

When the angel spoke, Mary wondered what sort of greeting this was.

“Rejoice, favored woman! The Lord is with you.”

She was deeply troubled by this and the angel immediately reassured her.

“Do not be afraid, Mary…”

God knew Mary. He knew her heart. He knew her faith. He knew her name. He knew everything about her. And so there is just this marvelous mystery as to why it was this girl? Why in this little town?

And the answer comes back to us. Why not here? Why not now? The time is fulfilled and all is right for God to send His Son to be born of a woman. The world is dark and the night is growing but this announcement is the beginning of the end of darkness.

And so it began. In a little backwoods town called Nazareth where a young woman lived in hope and anticipation of the day she would marry her betrothed, Joseph.

It was an unlikely place. It was an unlikely choice. It was an unlikely scenario for the Son of God to make His entrance. And it only got more unlikely from there.

But that is the way that our God loves to work. He chooses the weak things of the world to confound the mighty. He loves to work in unlikely places and with unlikely people. Does that mean that God could even use you and me?

When the angel spoke to Joseph it was to reassure him.

“Joseph, Son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because what has been conceived in her is by the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to name Him Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.”

And so the light has come – deep within the womb of a young virgin girl from backwoods Nazareth. She has a carpenter who is pledged to her in marriage. Joseph was a righteous man. Humble. Strong. Poor. They were perfect.

Their job was to bring the Messiah, the Son of God, safely into the world and to raise Him as their own. In return He would die on a rugged cross for their sins and for ours. Mary was the opposite of Eve. Eve brought sin to all men but Mary brought salvation to all men.

The lamp is shining. The world continues in its darkness but for all those who are willing to turn from their darkness to the Light of Christ can be rescued from their plight. Christ is able to bring His light into our darkness. Our darkness? It is the darkness that causes us to turn to a bottle of pills or a bottle of whiskey or a one night stand or a desperate moment of anger and hatred that results in pain and suffering to those on the receiving end. It is a darkness that suffocates and strangles and consumes all who live in it. Hell is the home of ultimate darkness.

But in heaven we won’t need the sun or the moon or the stars. There, Christ will be the light of that place. There will be no darkness on the inside or on the outside.

That’s what Christmas is about. The real Light of Bethlehem was not the star in the sky. It was a baby in a manger. The darkness… is ending. It has to end because the Day Star has dawned. His light is shining and growing. He will vanquish every kind of darkness from us.

I pray that you have experienced His marvelous light. I pray that you know Him and that your entire soul is filled with His light. Merry CHRISTmas!

Your Pastor,

Bro. Tim Hobbs