The First Homecoming
So the Word became human and made his home among us. – John 1:14 (NLT)
Many believers look forward to the apocalyptic Second Coming of Christ. The glorious culmination of time when the sparkling city of New Jerusalem will descend from heaven and the shout from the throne of God will declare: “Behold! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and God will dwell with them!”
But today our emphasis is upon the first homecoming of Christ. We commemorate the first time God came to live with us. We celebrate the Jewish baby born in a stable, because his parents were compelled to register for a governmental census that refused to count them as citizens.
Jesus’ first homecoming wasn’t nearly as spectacular and glorious as many anticipate his Second Coming to be.
No celestial displays of a conquering messiah … just the halting cries of an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes.
No trumpets of victory blaring in the winds … just the grateful eyes of a mother and father fastened upon their newborn child.
No new heaven and earth … just a dogged belief that the special birth in the old town of Bethlehem would usher in a change of human governance.
No transcendent transitions of ecstasy… just a humble expression of incarnate love.
Those of us who have welcomed Jesus into our hearts and homes are not desperate for magnificent displays of his appearance and his power. His glorious light guides us every day. His perfect peace is the bedrock of our blessed assurance. His spirit abides in us, so we find our rest and our restoration in him.
And on this Christmas Day, we say, “Thank you, Lord, for making your home with us.”
Glorious God, today and every day we say again and again: Welcome home.
Kenneth L. Samuel is Pastor of Victory for the World Church, Stone Mountain, Georgia.