A PEEK AT THE ENDING by Kendra Dahl for Core Christianity
This is Day 1 from “The Promised Seed,” our 25-day Christmas devotional. To continue reading along with us these next 25 days, download your free devotional here.
Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth. This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
Have you ever read a book so filled with tension you were tempted to flip to the last page and find out how it ends?
Let’s be honest. These last couple of years have us all living in that tension. We’d like to flip to the back of the book and see everything tied up in a little bow. We’re ready to be done with pandemics and forest fires, political uncertainty and heated debates on Facebook. Even as we celebrate Christmas, hoping to bid farewell to this year, we’re living in denial if we think January 1st will mark a sharp turn for the better.
Or, perhaps, as we look at our current circumstances, many of us don’t even care about the ending. We’d rather just close the book altogether. Maybe burn it?
But Christmas is a season marked by hope. The weary world takes a deep breath; we lift our eyes, believing the words are true: The people in darkness will see a great light (Isa. 9:2).
This month, as we look to the story that’s already been written in human history, we’ll find confidence and hope. The same God who preserved his seed—the promised line through whom the Messiah would come—in order to accomplish our salvation is at work now.
It feels a little odd to kick off the Christmas season by jumping right to the main event. Over the next 25 days, we’ll tell the story from the beginning—in Eden itself—and work our way back to this glorious climax, the moment when the Promised Seed finally appeared. But we’re going to start by peeking at the ending to anchor our hope. The Promised Seed has come!