Today, we light the Green, Black, Blue and Gold Candles. The Green Candle represents life and all that Father God created in Christ, Good and Whole. The Black Candle represents the Evil and Corruption of Sin that entered our World through our rebellion. The Blue candle represents the Hope that comes from the Promises of a future Savior and King. The Gold candle represents the birth of the long expected King and Savior.
“But Himself He emptied
The form of a servant He took on
Like other men He was born,
And in the appearance of a human He was found,..”
Many years after the birth of Jesus, the Apostle Paul would write a poem, pondering The Lord Jesus’ humility and His exaltation:
2:6 “Being in the form of God
He did not consider equality with God Something to be grasped,
2:7 But Himself He emptied
The form of a servant he took on
Like other men He was born,
And in the appearance of a human He was found,
2:8 Humbling Himself,
By becoming obedient to the point of death
Death by The Cross!
2:9 This is why God highly exalted Him
And granted Him The Name
The One above all names,
2:10 So that in the name of Jesus
Every knee will bend –
(In heaven and on earth and under the earth!)
2:11 And all tongues publicly proclaim that
The Lord is Jesus Christ!
To the glory of God the Father.”
At this time of year, we focus on and celebrate the Birth of Jesus. Paul pushes us a little deeper. What did Jesus’ birth as a human being mean for Him?
As we have already heard, Mary was told that her son Jesus would be conceived by the Holy Spirit so that He would be holy, the Son of God. As Paul says, here, Jesus existed in the “form of God” before He was born a human. Jesus was and is God. But His equality with God was not something that Jesus needed to “cling to or grasp after.” Instead, He emptied Himself and took the “form of a servant.”
Paul makes it clear with his following words that he is emphasizing the reality that Jesus fully entered the human experience: He was born, He became a servant to all, He humbled Himself in obedience to His Father, and He experienced death, even the terrible, torturous death on The Cross. Although He was The Word who was God and was with God in the beginning, He was willing to let go of His divine rights to become a servant to us and for us.
In another place, Paul says this:
2 Corinthians 8:9
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich,
yet for your sake He became poor, so that you by His poverty might become rich.
Jesus was born to be like us so that He could make us like Himself.
Because of this great humility, the Father will exalt Jesus and His Name above all others. A day is coming when everything and everyone will bow before Jesus. A day is coming when everything and everyone with a voice will affirm, “The Lord is Jesus Christ!!”
For now, during this season, we think of the baby in the manager who was born to be King over all. We think of His humility. We think of His poverty. We think of His self-sacrifice.
We remember for our sake He became poor, so that we, by His poverty, might become rich.
And we praise His Name—The Name above all others.