Mommas, Babies, And Bethlehem
The following is a lesson where I was asked by our Pastor to teach on Wednesday December 9, 2020 in an online service. The video is available at www.PointOfMercy.TV.
Scientists discovered in 2013, that the eyes of Arctic reindeer change colour through the seasons from gold to blue, (the blue allows more light in during winter), adapting to extreme changes of light levels in their environment and helping detect predators. The blue allowed more light to come in, so they could see better during the murkiness of winter. I mention it because, tonight has to do with seeing the unseen, or seeing what is not yet there.
A few Sundays ago, they were running some pre-service items, including Bible questions. One of them was, which person’s Mother saw an Angel. What struck me about it was not the right answer, it was a multiple choice question, but the wrong one.
One of those who’s Mother was not reported to have seen an Angel was David. Now, David shares something with The Lord. Like Jesus, David was born in Bethlehem. Although the circumstances of his birth, at least that we know of, had no feathered messengers to announce his birth. David’s birth was as wingless, as well a reindeer.
David’s Mom didn’t meet anyone with a promise that this child will be this. As far as she knew, he was going to grow up like any other boy in Bethlehem. When you think of the contrast of the two births, it makes you wonder, what did she see that led to what David would see one day. This takes me to my opening Verse for tonight.
Psalms 86:16 (ESV)
16 Turn to me and be gracious to me; give your strength to your servant, and save the son of your maidservant.
Psalms 116:16 (ESV)
16 O LORD, I am your servant;I am your servant, the son of your maidservant. You have loosed my bonds.
David wrote the 86th Psalm. Some scholars believe David also wrote the 116 Psalm, and if so, he mentions the phrase again in 116:16. We don’t get her name in Scripture, Jewish scholars have opinions, but we don’t get her name.
At one point during his later struggle with Saul, he would bring his Dad and Mom to the King Of Moab, asking him to keep them safe at Mizpeh, meaning watchtower. David watched out for the parents that had raised him, loved him, and poured into him.
While I’m sure Jesse did his part, tonight, I’d like to focus on the relationship between David and his Momma, the other Mother from Bethlehem. According to these two verses, prior to David ever chased after God, his Momma fell in love with Him first.
Before she ever saw the promise in her son, she saw the hope in Her Lord. How Her decision to follow after God, influenced her entire life, and in turn her son’s. The Bible says that David was a man after God’s own heart. Have you ever wondered how he got that way? Evidently, someone instilled it in him.
Following God, adjusts your vision to what’s important, it gives you perspective. In art, perspective is defined as the art of drawing solid objects on a two-dimensional surface to give the right impression of their height, width, depth, and position in relation to each other when viewed from a particular point. In other words, you have to draw it in a way that reflects it properly.
An artist will tell you, the greatest enhancement in their talent isn’t only in their hands, but their vision. Before you can paint it, you need to see it differently. Light is so important, and when your eyes are adjusted for more light to come in, it transforms everything you see.
The scientists said that not only does the change of the reindeer’s eye allow more light in, it helps them to see predators better. They can see what would harm them, their children, and those around them.
Evidence said, David’s just another child, Momma said not my boy. The God she served gave her this child! Is it any wonder her son could say I love you O Lord my strength? That he could say The Lord Is My Rock, because He was Momma’s Rock first.
Because of David’s Mother’s seeing clearly, she saw with enough clarity to paint a picture for her son. When you are in relationship with God, you don’t only seek to please Him, but in doing so, you reflect Him properly to those around you.
David was a man after God’s own heart, but somebody had to put that love in his heart. The name David means Beloved, let me ask you, does that sound like a Momma named him? Love deeply, and loves reaches higher. The more love you receive, the more love you are able to give. David loved God, because it was modeled in his life.
When the time finally came for David to be revealed, God sent , not a winged warrior, but Samuel to Bethlehem. He said, “I have prepared for Myself a king among his sons.” God had prepared him through his young life, but waited for the right time to reveal him.
You probably remember the story, Samuel goes and sees the other sons, and they’re not chosen. He asks Jesse, are these all of your sons. Jesse says, the youngest is watching the sheep. Samuel says go get him, we won’t sit down til he arrives.
David gets there, and Samuel sees something in him. The ESV says it slightly different than the KJV. The KJV says he had a beautiful countenance, and he did, but the ESV specifically mentions he had beautiful eyes, and that he was handsome. I don’t know it, but I kind of suspect David had his Momma’s eyes, at least he did when it came to God.
He looked at God and saw greatness, because his Momma had. Because she saw greatness in God, she saw greatness in David. Because she did, he saw greatness in others.
This is true of all the Momma’s who didn’t see a feathered messenger before their child was born. Some of the greatest men in Scripture had no Herald Angels visible at their birth. Another Momma who didn’t see an Angel was Moses.
The Bible says when she saw that he was a goodly child. Again, I’m sure he was, but a child can be ugly as homemade sin, and be beautiful to their parents. Nicholas, our son is beautiful, but if he had not been, we would never have known it.
All of these Mothers saw their children through Eyes Of Love. Loving their children, they invested in them. When God puts someone on your heart, He places His love for them in you. This isn’t only true of children, it’s true of those God has called you and I to reach out to with the hope of Salvation.
Seeing through God’s Eyes, means loving those you care about. Seeing them the way God sees them, means you will risk everything to pour into them. It doesn’t just work for your children, it works for the ones He puts on your heart whether a believer yet or not.
I’m sure there were times in all these men’s lives that their Momma’s had to say wait a minute here. They adjusted things, not because they wanted to punish, but they wanted to propel them higher than they had ever been.
Seeing someone you love, with a need, will ignite you into action to reach out for them. Loving those who are already on this journey with you in the faith, will help you to support them, and lift them higher.
You will see what they can accomplish, and you throw your whole support behind them getting there. You keep doing it, because you love them enough to make the effort. There was no physical evidence that either David or Moses, at that point, would be more than the son of a slave, and the youngest son of a old man from Bethlehem, but their Momma’s didn’t see things that way.
Their Mommas saw a Future for their Children. Babies are born, not because someone witnessed winged wonders, but because they saw The One Who Is Wonderful. An because they acted without seeing the spectacular, others saw what had never been seen.
When we think of Bethlehem, we think of Wisemen, Shepherds, and Angels. Mary, Jesus’ Mother saw an angel. Joseph, Mary’s Fiancé dreamed of Angels. The reason that all of that happened though, was because before the world looked at a little sleepy town, God sent David there. The reason we celebrate The Christ in THe Manger, was because of a little shepherd boy in Bethlehem, generations before.
It was famous because David was born there. Yet, no Prophet is recorded as prophesying of David’s birth, but his Momma knew. There was something about this boy. I mentioned that David and Moses’ Momma’s are not recorded as seeing angels, neither were the two Mother’s of two other men, Abraham and Isaiah.
Abraham’s Daddy was an idolater, yet Abram pursued God enough to hear his voice and become Abraham. Makes you wonder who gave him the idea doesn’t it? Isaiah’s Momma didn’t either, as far as we know. Yet, their sons saw angels.
Abraham saw angels and received the promise of Isaac, who would produce a people like the stars of Heaven. David saw an angel at the threshing floor, and it led to the building of the temple. Moses saw the pattern of two angels on the Mercy Seat, and looked ahead into the future of Redemption, if you will, a Point Of Mercy. Isaiah saw something too, which opened his eyes to something far greater than angels.
All of these men saw beyond what their Mothers saw. In the first chapter of Matthew, in the first Verse, David and Abraham are mentioned. In the same chapter, so is the Prophet Isaiah. Moses said There is a Prophet coming like unto me, and like Moses, Jesus would journey to Egypt. All of these men, including Jesus, would go where no one expected, except maybe their Mommas.
Matthew 1:1 (KJV)
1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.
As Pastor said Sunday, every generation should draw closer, reach deeper, and see more. Why, because we are lifting them, supporting them, and clearing paths for them to go farther than we have ever gone.
Isaiah, saw angels, but he saw something else. When he saw them, just like David watching his Momma, he saw them looking at God. In Isaiah 6, He saw the angels looking at God, and in chapter 7 he saw something God looking back through new eyes. The next chapter would be written in Isaiah 7, and required in Matthew 1.
Isaiah 7:14 (KJV)
14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son,and shall call his name Immanuel.
Matthew 1:23 (KJV)
23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
Isaiah saw The Future, God wrapped in flesh. He was coming not with the feathers of angels, but the back of a man. The same back that would carry our sins to the cross. The Son Of David’s intention was never to have us focus on feathered messengers, but featherless ones. That’s why the winged angels of a Bethehem field, handed off the message to angels of another kind, the Sheperds of Bethlehem.
Men whose message was so important, they would leave their sheep the way one day fishermen would leave their nets. They had something far greater than the angels they saw that night. They went into the city, and saw The God Of Creation in a manger by His Mother. They saw God, choose not the form of the heavenly, but the confines of the Earthly.
These Shepherds went to see the same thing that started our lesson, a Momma and a Child. They went to see Joseph, Mary, and her Jesus. The glory of the angels singing was beautiful, but it couldn’t compare to The Voice Of God in that stable. The contents of that manger, is so much greater, how do I know? Because, even the angels were watching.
They saw something that man never imagined, a God that loved us so much, The God Who was everywhere, limited Himself to somewhere. God wanted us to see His commitment to man, so we would not only commit to Him, but commit to reach those He is reaching out for.
The whole purpose of Him sending the angels to them, wasn’t so they could see signs in Heaven, but to see God on Earth. The word wing in Hebrew, means more than a body of feathers. It can mean part of an army, but it can also mean the border of a garment. He will take you to the border of the known, to cause you to expand into the lives of those were too busy to pursue it themselves.
Christ was willing to be wrapped in swaddling clothes, held in a Momma’s arms, so He could one day reach out to us and say, “Come Unto Me All You That Are Heavy Laden, and I will give you rest.”
That’s why He formed physical eyes to see through. He saw in a way He had never seen, so that you and I, and all who would, could see the unseen for the first time, Salvation, Mercy, and Redemption, as part of the family of God!
Luke 2:7 (KJV)
7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
Mary looked at Jesus through the Eyes Of Love, not only because He was God, but because He was her son. She had a personal connection with God, and that’s what He wants with all of us. Before she had looked at Him, He looked at fallen mankind.
His heart yearned to save us, not because we were worthy, but because He wanted to adopt us all. He saw the unseen, what we could become in Him. In the process, Jesus would have to change the way all of us saw the world, but He would do it, one step at a time.
2020 has been a hard year, and a lot of people have experienced heartache. I’ve also seen so much good though. I’ve seen Christians reaching out to others in need. Believers saying I’m praying for you. Is there anything I can do to help you?
I’ve seen people view others through eyes of love. In turn, I’ve seen them lift them higher than they could ever go. All because they viewed them, through eyes of love, not maybe in their current condition, but what they could become. Sounds a lot like a couple of Mommas and Babies from Bethlehem to me.