A student worker called Ada Lum wrote a book of Bible studies called Jesus, one of us. They are very good studies that attempt to relate Jesus to contemporary life. This, together with the fact that 46% of UK people do not see Jesus’ birth as relevant to their Christmas, got me thinking.
According to the Bible, Jesus was born to an unmarried mother (Matt 1) with all the stigma that that can bring. He was homeless when he was born (Luke 2). He became a political refugee, hunted by a power hungry, fearful madman (Matt 2). The first visitors after his birth were a group of Shepherds (Luke 2); not the most salubrious bunch. Even in the first 3 years of his life, he didn’t have a privilege of kingship, although he was a king.
And why did God become one of us? Well, let me leave that answer to Karl Barth, courtesy of “Karl Barth for Dummies” FB page
The object of divine action in the Incarnation is humanity. God’s free decision is and remains a gracious decision; God becomes a human being, the Word becomes flesh. The Incarnation means real and complete descent of God. God actually became what we are, in order actually to exist with us, actually to exist for us, in thus becoming and being human, not to do what we do – sin; and to do what we fail to do –God’s will; and so actually, in our place, in our situation and position to be the new human being.
He is one of us that we may become like him.