The next part of the Apostles’ Creed is the Christmas or Nativity story. God comes down from heaven and becomes human. This is the greatest love story ever written! We humans did not and could never work our own way out of sin. So God, who loved us so much, sent His only Son…
As Jesus told Nicodemus that night…
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.“John 3:16-17 NTL
The Apostle’s Creed Continued…
For us men and for our salvationThe Apostles’ Creed
he came down from heaven,
and by the power of the Holy Spirit
was born (incarnate or conceived) of the Virgin Mary,
and became man.
Let’s start with the first part of this next section, “for our salvation he came down from heaven”. This states that Jesus was truly God and He had one purpose on earth — to save mankind. Jesus explains this in the Gospel of John….
They answered, “Show us a miraculous sign if you want us to believe in you. What can you do? After all, our ancestors ate manna while they journeyed through the wilderness! The Scriptures say, ‘Moses gave them bread from heaven to eat.’ ”
Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, Moses didn’t give you bread from heaven. My Father did. And now he offers you the true bread from heaven. The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
“Sir,” they said, “give us that bread every day.”
Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. But you haven’t believed in me even though you have seen me. However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them. For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will. And this is the will of God, that I should not lose even one of all those he has given me, but that I should raise them up at the last day. For it is my Father’s will that all who see his Son and believe in him should have eternal life. I will raise them up at the last day.”John 6:30-40 NLT
God put in our hearts the urge, thirst or hunger to be connected with Him. That’s why you often read of Jesus referring to Himself as the “Bread of Life” or the “Living Water”. If we don’t discover that connection with God early in life, we go seeking something to fill that urge in the wrong places. I know, I did.
Born of a Virgin and Became Man
In the Gospel of Luke we have Mary’s story…
In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!”
Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!”
Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.” The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month. For the word of God will never fail.”
Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.Luke 1:26-38 NLT
In Matthew, we have Joseph’s story…
This is how Jesus the Messiah was born. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph. But before the marriage took place, while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant through the power of the Holy Spirit. Joseph, to whom she was engaged, was a righteous man and did not want to disgrace her publicly, so he decided to break the engagement quietly.
As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet:
“Look! The virgin will conceive a child!
She will give birth to a son,
and they will call him Immanuel,
which means ‘God is with us.’”
When Joseph woke up, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded and took Mary as his wife. But he did not have sexual relations with her until her son was born. And Joseph named him Jesus.Matthew 1:18-25 NLT
Notice the last paragraph here — Joseph did not have marital relations with his wife, Mary, until after Jesus was born. Mary was not a perpetual virgin. She had other children. Jesus had brothers! Here’s proof…
As Jesus was speaking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, asking to speak to him. 47 Someone told Jesus, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, and they want to speak to you.”Matthew 12:46-47 NLT
Two of his brothers authored books in the New Testament, James and Jude.
Jesus is Both God and Man
Again, I quote from the Bible Study on the Apostles’ Creed from the Bible App by Matt Chandler from LifeWay.com…
Belief in the virgin birth is essential in shaping the Christian life. It testifies to the nature of Jesus as both God and man, as well as to the fact that we have an all-powerful Father who interacts with His creation to make Himself known. Many, if not most, difficulties with or objections to believing in God are more about ourselves and our circumstances than they are about God. The virgin birth is a miraculous act from a miraculous God.Matt Chandler, LifeWay.com
God, the Father, gave us God, the Son, through God, the Holy Spirit to save us. That’s God’s Grace given freely to us! We never earned it. Can’t earn it. We definitely don’t deserve it.
Jesus wants a relationship with us just as much as we want that connection/relationship with Him.
“Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends. 21 Those who are victorious will sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat with my Father on his throne.
22 “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches.”Revelation 3:20-22 NLT
Jesus is knocking. Why don’t you let Him in?
Invite Him into your heart.
Pray this prayer humbly and wholeheartedly…
“Dear Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner. I believe You died for my sins. Please forgive me. Right now, I turn from my sins and open the door of my heart and my life to you. I confess You as my personal Lord and Savior. I surrender my whole life to you and I will follow you for the rest of my life. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Next Steps in Your New Walk with Jesus…
- Start reading the Bible daily to get to know God. If you don’t have one, I recommend the YouVersion, Bible.app and Through the Word app — both are free and have a lot of great Bible studies.
- Pray every day. Talk to God. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you daily.
- Find and join a Bible-believing church — preferably a non-denominational one and be baptized!
- From Catholic to Prodigal: Surviving College
- From Prodigal to Progressive: Surviving Hurricanes
- From Progressive to Born Again Christian: Surviving Unemployment
Jesus Christ is coming back soon! Are you ready?
Soli Deo Gloria — To God Alone Be the Glory!