by the Rev. Andrew Kuyvenhoven
The Prince of Peace, the Son of David, was announced by Isaiah. The story of his coming was proclaimed by the evangelists, each with a different emphasis. Jesus made God's kingship real in this world. Today, the kingdom is here—and it is coming.
... and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the law of the Lord: "a pair of doves or two young pigeons" (Luke 2:24).
Mary and Joseph went to the temple to perform two religious duties. First, since Jesus was their firstborn son, they had to make a special act of consecration. The God who killed the firstborn of Egypt owned the firstborn of Israel. And by dedicating their firstborn and firstfruits to God, God's people were saying that all belongs to the Lord.
Secondly, according to Old Covenant law giving birth and losing blood left a woman in need of purification. After the prescribed time she had to come before the Lord and bring a sacrifice. "If she cannot afford a lamb, she is to bring two doves or two young pigeons" (Lev. 12:8). And Mary could not afford a lamb.
What an amazing humiliation for baby Jesus and mother Mary. The child she carried in pregnancy was the Holy One of God. He made her body the holy of holies. Yet she goes to the temple to be cleansed of impurity connected with the Holy One.
But this is only the beginning. Humiliation is going to be the pattern of Jesus' life and the outline of his mission. Not only will he grow up as an ordinary Jewish boy, but he will take the place of sinners.
Paul puts it this way: "When the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive the full rights of sons" (Gal. 4:4–5). While he was still in his mother's arms, Jesus started his program of redemption.
Andrew Kuyvenhoven's Daylight, a modern devotional classic, was originally published in 1994. This edition is copyright by Faith Alive Christian Resources, from whom may be ordered Daylight, the predecessor of Twilight.
A man of many accomplishments, Andrew Kuyvenhoven is probably best known for his contributions to Today (formerly The Family Altar), a widely-used monthly devotional booklet associated with the Back to God Hour. Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations for this edition of Twilight are from the New International Version