Tuesday, December 25, 2012

B.C. & A.D.

This is a popular photo of a lamb and lion.  I wish I had my great aunt's painting to share.

I still remember a Christmas card my grandmother received years ago from her twin-sister that was very meaningful.  It had a painting that she made herself of a lion and a lamb together which is a  symbol of the restoration of all things.  She was a gifted artist.  Inside the card she wrote how time was split because of the birth of a baby.  Our history is written in the terms of B.C. (before Christ) and A.D. (Anno Domini, which means "in the year of our Lord."  Each year that goes by bears this signature that Christ has come. 

      During  this time of year there was an old movie that was popular years ago called "It's A Wonderful Life."  The story taught a moral like a good story should.  The lesson it gave was that one person's life has a chain reaction that influences many lives to a degree that is impossible to calculate.  Taking a look at Jesus' life we can see that he influenced people to a greater degree than any other person in history.  In a writing that is popular with believers and non-believers alike, James Allan Francis in 1926 wrote the following short description of Jesus' life entitled, One Solitary Life:
"Let us turn now to the story. A child is born in an obscure village. He is brought up in another obscure village. He works in a carpenter shop until he is thirty, and then for three brief years is an itinerant preacher, proclaiming a message and living a life. He never writes a book. He never holds an office. He never raises an army. He never has a family of his own. He never owns a home. He never goes to college. He never travels two hundred miles from the place where he was born. He gathers a little group of friends about him and teaches them his way of life. While still a young man, the tide of popular feeling turns against him. One denies him; another betrays him. He is turned over to his enemies. He goes through the mockery of a trial; he is nailed to a cross between two thieves, and when dead is laid in a borrowed grave by the kindness of a friend.

Those are the facts of his human life. He rises from the dead. Today we look back across nineteen hundred years and ask, What kind of trail has he left across the centuries? When we try to sum up his influence, all the armies that ever marched, all the parliaments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned are absolutely picayune in their influence on mankind compared with that of this one solitary life…"

      The Bible says he came in "the fullness of time."  This is evidenced by the way he fulfilled prophecies that would not be fulfilled at any other time in history.  The Seventy Weeks of Daniel give the very time period that he had to live in order for the prophecy to be fulfilled.  After 70 A.D. the genealogies of individual Jewish families were destroyed and no other man would be able to prove the credentials of the promised Messiah like the detailed lists in the gospels.

      Christ came at the fullness of time and changed time for all time.  Have a blessed Christmas!

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