Scripture Reading — Matthew 1:18-25
“Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.”
—Acts 16:31 —
A neighbor asked a friend, “What must I do to be saved?” “It’s too late!” came the reply. “What do you mean? Isn’t there something I can do?” With a smile the friend continued, “It is already done; Jesus took care of it 2,000 years ago.”
When that question was raised in Acts 16, the answer was, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.” It is not what we do, but what God has done for us. Jesus’ work is perfect and complete, and we are called to respond in faith.
God’s great Christmas gift is eternal life through faith in Jesus. Personalized, John 3:16 says, “God so loved the world [including (your name)] that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him [including (your name)] shall not perish but have eternal life.”
God’s promise does not say “might be saved,” or “could be saved.” God’s gift is the promise that everyone who believes shall have eternal life.
As Joseph came to grips with the pregnancy of Mary, he was told that God was doing a miraculous work to bring salvation. He was instructed to give the baby the name “Jesus.” That name revealed the purpose of his birth and work: “he will save his people from their sins.”
Do you know Jesus? Believe and celebrate God’s salvation!
Jesus, your name beautifully describes your work for our sake. We humbly confess that we cannot save ourselves, so we look to you in faith. We pray in your name. Amen.