Copyright 2016-2019 Lifeword
Day by Day Video
What Are You Anticipating?
Clif Johnson
Aired on Dec 05, 2023
Show Day by Day
Nov 29, 2023
00:05:14 Minutes


Micah 5:2-5

Celebrating the birth of Jesus should be real and exciting for believers.   ~~~   This time of year is marked with anticipation and waiting. Everywhere we turn, we can’t wait for something to happen. Kids can’t wait to get out of school for the holidays, adults can’t wait to get off of work. Parents can’t wait to give their presents to their children to see their eyes light up and children can’t wait to open them. We anticipate the weather turning colder so we can throw some logs on the fire and enjoy some hot chocolate. We anticipate the arrival of hunting season. We anticipate the arrival of reduced prices for the shopping season. And of course, at some point during this season, we will all probably wait in a long check out line. And all of this chaos and busyness can so cloud our Christmas season that we forget or neglect to anticipate and long for Christ. To make sure that does not happen in our live, we have advent. The word “advent” simply means the coming, the arrival, or the dawning. So Christmas Advent is the celebration of the first arrival of the Christ child. This is when we celebrate and rejoice that God sent His son to the earth to redeem us from the curse of sin. And one way that we celebrate Advent is by looking back into the OT to see how the people of God in the OT were to anticipate the promised Savior. We have one of those promises in Micah 5 Micah 5:2-5 “But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose origin os from of old, from ancient days…And he shall stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the LORD, in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God. And they shall dwell secure, for now he shall be great to the ends of the earth. And he shall be their peace.” The text tells us that the city of Bethlehem would be the hometown of this ruler of Israel. Bethlehem was not going to show up on many maps. It was small; it was insignificant; it was overwhelmingly normal. And yet Micah declares that it will be this tiny city that will be the starting point for this anticipated Savior. Why would God do this? One reason God does this is because Bethlehem is the place where David was born, and it was prophesied that the Messiah would be from the lineage of David. But that is not entirely what Micah is going after in this verse. Micah is trying to paint a picture for us to see that something extravagant will come from something insignificant. God chooses to use something unsuspecting and small, obscure and out of the way, to be the commencement of the biggest revolution in history ever. But Why? Why does God choose something small? He chooses something as unexpected as Bethlehem so that no one can boast. He doesn’t choose Jerusalem or Athens or Greece or Paris or New York. No one can say, “Well of course it was Bethlehem. That place is replete with great leaders. Of course Bethlehem, it has the best of teachers and schools to raise up a great young man. Of course Bethlehem, look at all that has been accomplished there!” God goes out of the way to help us see that he does not need our efforts, accomplishments or help in order to bring himself glory. He plans a census and orchestrates a virgin birth and books up a hotel so that no one can say, “Look at what I helped bring about!” He said that the Messiah would come in the line of David, but he waits until that lineage has lost influence and uses a lowly peasant girl, from the line of David, so that no family member can say, “Look at what we accomplished!” Instead, we are left to say, “How great is our God.” So he promises to bring forth a Messiah, the Shepherd King, in an unexpected, unsuspected way to bring glory to himself. And Shouldn’t the New Testament Christian’s anticipation be even brighter and greater and filled with more joy because we know what Christ is like and we have experienced His presence in a very real way. The Old Testament saints had clues to the mystery and they rejoiced over that, but the mystery has been unveiled to us! So I am praying that this Christmas builds your anticipation for the return of this Shepherd King, who will one day wipe away every tear from our eyes.

Other media in this series