26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.” (Luke 1:26-33)
What does it mean to say “God is great”?
- We say that someone is ‘great’ or someone is the GOAT (greatest of all time) when we compare them to someone else in the same field. So when someone says that Michael Jordan is the GOAT or Lebron James is the GOAT, you know exactly what they mean. Compared to all the other players, across all time, they are the best. The greatest to have ever played the game of basketball.
- To think about greatness properly, you need some baseline, something to compare to. But you can’t compare apples and oranges. You have to compare something or someone in the same field or category.
- So who do you compare God to? Who is in his category?
In the Old Testament, Moses said:
For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome…(Deuteronomy 10:17)
The Bible, time and time again, describes God as ‘great’:
- For you are great and do marvelous deeds; you alone are God. (Psalm 86:10)
- Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness! (Psalm 150:2)
- Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. (Psalm 145:3)
God’s greatness is not something we’ll ever comprehend fully because we are categorically different from God. You and I are bound by an immense amount of limitations – inherent in humanity.
- The strongest person in the world reaches a point where they can’t lift one more pound. There’s a limit.
- The smartest person in the world will run up against something they don’t know. There’s a limit.
- The fastest person in the world can’t be everywhere at once. There’s a limit.
Because we are created, we have limitations. All created things do. And it’s almost impossible even to imagine someone not having limits.
- Someone all powerful: Someone who can create life with their words. Someone who speaks stars are made. (The LORD merely spoke, and the heavens were created. He breathed the word, and all the stars were born. – Psalm 33:6)
- Someone all knowing: Someone who doesn’t just breathe stars but knows each by name. With 10 billion galaxies in the observable universe with 100 billion stars in each galaxy. Could you imagine someone knowing all 1 billion trillion stars by name? (He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. – Psalms 147:4)
- Someone who wasn’t bound by time: Someone who could be perfectly present, everywhere, at all times. (Where can I go from your Spirit? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. -Psalm 139:7-8)
God is so beyond us that it makes you wonder if it’s even possible to know Him. The only way for us to know an infinitely great God is if God chooses to reveal Himself to us.
And Christmas is God revealing himself through Jesus. If you want to know what God is like, examine Jesus. Jesus is God in the flesh.
9 Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. (John 14:1-9)
15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him. (Colossians 1:15-19)
Unless God chooses to reveal Himself, we have no chance of knowing Him. And God has done this perfectly in Jesus. In all His greatness.
- God revealed His omniscience, His all-knowing reach as Jesus taught and amazed the crowds with His knowledge.
- God revealed His omnipotence, his all-powerful ways as Jesus performed miracles and mighty works.
- God revealed His omnipresence, his ability to be at all places at all times as Jesus walked the earth and ascended to heaven, but also promised that He would be with us till the end of the age (Matt 28:20).
So here’s what this means for you: you can know God today. And God wants you to know Him because God loves you.
That’s the promise of Christmas.
How can you know God? Through faith in Jesus. By believing that Jesus, and Jesus alone, made a way and removed all obstacles to God. That Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.
And by putting your faith in Jesus, you can know this unfathomable God. This God that doesn’t have limits.
- You think He doesn’t have enough forgiveness in Him for your situation? He does. He’s that great.
- You think He doesn’t have enough care or kindness to pay attention to your life? He does. He’s that great.
- You think He doesn’t have enough grace for you because you used it all up on the last time you screwed up. He does. He’s that great.
- You don’t think He could use someone like you? His love and purpose for your life know no bounds. He’s that great.
- You don’t think He can provide a miracle for your situation? He can! His power is never-ending. He’s that great.
Whatever situation you find yourself in today, know that God is great. And that this great God loves you. And Christmas is the evidence of that.