On an ordinary night, an extraordinary event suddenly took place. Unexpectedly, a greatly needed and very much longed for person's arrival was announced.
A messenger-angel carried a very wonderful message to those present as they heard these unforgettable words:
‘BE NOT AFRAID: FOR BEHOLD, I BRING YOU GOOD TIDINGS OF GREAT JOY, WHICH SHALL BE TO ALL PEOPLE. FOR UNTO YOU IS BORN ... A SAVIOUR.'
Suddenly in that moment of time the fulfillment of GOD's great divine promise took place and all the promises of GOD in this Jesus would be “YES and AMEN,”(2 Corinthians 1:20) for this wonderful Saviour is gloriously and eternally affirmative and confirmative in Who He is and what He does.
A SAVIOUR PROMISED - A SAVIOUR NEEDED A SAVIOUR LONG AWAITED. A SAVIOUR PROVIDED A SAVIOUR WONDERFUL - A SAVIOUR FOR ALL PEOPLE
A SAVIOUR FOR YOU AND ME
Consider: - A SAVIOUR LONG AWAITED -
This was indeed the good news that believers in GOD's Word of promise had long awaited. More than 4,000 years had passed since the first promise of a Saviour had been given. (Genesis 3:15) A faithful few in each generation waited in faith and expectancy for GOD to fulfill His promise to provide this SAVIOUR; the One great enough to conquer Satan and put away sin and death. Truly a great Saviour.
Why did GOD wait those long years, (for us “long" - but not for GOD) - 4,000 long years before this Saviour, “The Word" was made flesh – “Immanuel-GOD with us” would come forth into sinless manhood and accomplish an eternal redemption: Why 4,000 years?
Perhaps it will help if we consider why GOD would allow the escaped-out-of-Egypt slaves to spend 40 years wandering in that waste desert wilderness.
Expressly we are told in Deuteronomy 8:2-5, that GOD permitted this to take place in the lives of His earthly chosen people for their good in order that they would have it proven to themselves their need to be humble to know their own hearts in light of the goodness of GOD to them. There was no need to prove this to GOD for the latent rebellion that was deep within the human heart was well-known to Him. It would take 40 long years however for them to know the deceitfulness of the human heart. (Jeremiah 17:9)
If it took Israel 40 years of wandering in a waste wilderness to arrive at the humbling knowledge of the human heart, 4,000 years has been necessary for the entire world to humbly feel their need of just such a Saviour as Jesus Christ. (Acts 17:27)
And still today 2,000 years after that great announcement of the Saviour's arrival, the proud unyielded-to-GOD-heart of so many still fails to draw near to GOD, nor will they listen to the appeal of GOD's great heart of divine love to feel their need of a Saviour and to receive His Son, the Saviour of sinners. He alone can wash the guilty but believing sinner clean - yes, whiter than snow! Indeed?? YES! Whiter than how a blanket of perfect white snow can cover individuals, homes and entire cities!
"The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7
He is the Saviour of sinners Who alone can love, lift and give new life to the dying lost one who feels conviction of sin. (John 16:7-11)
There have been many saviours among men who bravely gave temporary rescue, release and deliverance to some who were in a current local danger.
Joseph was a true saviour in Egypt to the famine afflicted Egyptians and later he was savior to his own father, brothers and their families.
A temporary and local salvation has been provided by different persons within the many nations of men but none could lay the foundation in themselves to provide a salvation great enough to rescue, release and save with an everlasting salvation from Sin, Satan and Death.
GOD's SAVIOUR only can give such a salvation.
Some have received a conscious need of a Saviour great enough to deal with mankind's great problem of sin and death. Who on earth could make such a change in humanity that could bring all into harmony and fellowship with GOD and each other? Man was created by and greatly loved and valued by GOD, having been given the remarkable capacity and ability to receive and reciprocate to GOD's magnificent love. A transcendent mutual fellowship was purposed for us by GOD but following the tragic fall into sin, Adam and Eve in listening to another, struck out in willful rebellion and independence from GOD.
The awful sorrows of sin and death's penalty of judgment upon sin, soon brought forth a harvest. Cain's decision to ignore the sin and death question was wrong when he considered that his decent hard work – “toil effort” would be enough to give him access to appear before GOD. His "decent-best" was not accepted nor enough and resulted in his murderous rage against his brother Abel. Cain did not believe his real need of a Saviour.
Abel's acknowledgement through faith that death and the shedding of blood would be fully accepted by GOD.
We are tied by a most marvelous invisible link to our earthly fathers and mothers but we are also attached by an invisible but real ancestral link to this first family. The entire history of the now huge human family has been written and recorded in blood, for today the entire world has become a vast family filled with strife, greed, jealousy, hatred and unfulfilled discontent. All in every nation need GOD's Saviour and Salvation. "There is no difference for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of GOD." (Romans 3:22-23)
And we in our present day have come to history's great critical point, when this great human family descended from Adam is threatened with a disintegrating form of corruption and violence that promises an ultimate chaotic collapse.
A Saviour is essential still for all today and GOD has brought Him near, so very near to all, for if we will heed GOD's great patient call, (John 3:16) we discover GOD's gospel of salvation in Jesus the Saviour. Jesus is the Door, the way out of a certain destruction that lies ahead for all in Adam's sinful, fallen race.
Enormous unthinkable strife is engulfing nations worldwide. The emergence of great geopolitical powers is causing many to search further into politics, nationalism, religion, education and disciplined conduct for an answer and way out - but all is failing! A SAVIOUR is needed great enough to save and solve the problem of the cause and outcome of sin.
More has been written about this wonderful Saviour Jesus than any other person, for He is still today the world's greatest teacher, prophet and person in all of history and yet still many are “in the dark" as to Who He is and what we are to think of and do with Jesus.
During the rise and fall of powerful men and kingdoms, some have looked for a saviour and salvation in palaces, upon thrones, at the head of armies, in the schools of philosophy and science, all the time ignoring GOD's provision in JESUS:
"Fear not ... for unto you is born this day ... a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:16 “And you shall call His NAME Jesus, FOR HE SHALL SAVE HIS PEOPLE FROM THEIR SINS." Matthew 1:21
Lying in a wayside cattle manger – ("No room” in the Inn surely means NO ROOM including even the Inn's stable!); this Saviour for the whole world was to be located with the poorest of the poor in His Incarnation for He had come to identify with and bear the consequences of the fallen sinner's root of sin and their transgressions. His Incarnation as Saviour was so complete in such a humble coming “incognito” into the world, that very few could see GOD present in Him. Poverty not pomp marked the perfection of His humility.
This is the Saviour Jesus, Lord of all, “Immanuel-GOD with us." He came and is able to save to the uttermost all who will receive Him, for Jesus is the great universal Saviour for all who will believe Him.
The SAVIOUR WHO WILL APPEAR FROM HEAVEN
Jesus is the Saviour Who will re-appear as the All-victorious Lord over all! Having carried the sorrows and griefs of us all, He was crucified, triumphant over sin, Satan and death. He is now the glorified Man in heaven. “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself.” Philippians 3:20-21 (NKJV)
Suddenly this marvelous Saviour of believing sinners shall certainly return. Some will be waiting and watching for this wonderful Saviour's return to complete the work He has begun. A whole world of men and women, boys and girls have continued to be confused and controlled in their uncertainty and insecurity. Trust in men of power, in false religions and pseudo-science has now hardened so many in their fears and sinful unbelief as they reason against their felt need of a Saviour from GOD.
Suddenly, as promised, He will remove His believing Body of believers to heaven but then that uncertainty, insecurity, rejection and neglect of Jesus Christ will result in the awful coming seven years of the most anguished, worldwide suffering ever known!!
Similarly, a great patriot who for his faith for many years had been rejected to a distant land, was now heard to be returning home! The word spread like wildfire as friends with expectant joy cried: “he is coming!" - "he is almost here!"
Suddenly the Lord Jesus will certainly return. He has promised it!
This great Saviour Jesus is about to return and the promise and hope of His personal return keeps many of the Lord's own people focused and faithful as they follow Him. It will be a sudden event expected by only a few but also a sudden shock to the many who have become so hardened in their hearts against their known and felt need of GOD's Saviour - Jesus our Lord. Yet so many reject, neglect and object to believe, receive and trust in the One they really and truly need. JESUS!
SUDDENLY for YOU !!!
We hope there will be a defining moment in your life when you SUDDENLY are confronted with the Saviour Jesus. In a moment of time to be made suddenly aware of GOD's Saviour and Salvation is a very precious moment of grace. It is a moment of honesty to GOD when the heart and mind confesses the real and honest need of this Saviour, for GOD will then suddenly take you from death into life, and He will save and keep you near to Himself forever. This can take place in a sudden moment of time in your life, for “Now is the accepted time, behold, now is the day of salvation.” (2 Corinthians 6:2)
All fear, waste and confusion will be replaced with the life-changing experience as this Lord and Saviour - the Life Giving Spirit breathes a more abundant and more gloriously satisfying eternal Christ life into you that very moment you believe and receive Him.
Jesus Christ is the Saviour Who GOD has so mercifully and magnificently sent to you! Wonderful and Perfect in His Person and wonderful is His so great Salvation! Hebrews 2:3.
“For the grace of GOD that brings salvation has appeared to all men." Titus 2:11. (NKJV) That grace that has appeared is the Saviour Jesus Christ and it is He that brings salvation to you.
Believe Him, Trust Him, receive Him with heart and soul at this very moment for then you will SUDDENLY EXPERIENCE AND know ONCE AND FOREVER -
JESUS - SAVIOUR of the believing sinner.
J. A. Short
[Dedicated to the precious memory of our faithful CBR co-worker Ah Sang (Ho Man Sang) who lived to share the joy of the known salvation of GOD in Jesus, Sang's precious Saviour and Lord. P.T.L.)