From the desk of Steve Shultz:
Merry Christmas to our dear readers!
The story of Jesus' birth never gets old – there were so many miracles behind His birth and on the scene of it. Enjoy this story of Immanuel, God with us, by Dan Wilson. Dan and his wife Linda are the co-founders of Supernatural Marriage Ministries, and have dedicated their lives to drawing couples into the type of intimacy that is driven by the Holy Spirit.
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The Ultimate Response to Immanuel
Silent night, holy night...
Hark! The herald angels sing, "Glory to the newborn King!"
During the Christmas season our hearts are filled with wonder and delight as we sing songs celebrating the birth of our Savior, Jesus. The stable in Bethlehem was filled with joyful serenity. The tranquility of Heaven was brought to earth through the birth of the Prince of Peace.
While bringing calm to those with Him in the physical realm, the powerful peace Jesus carried within was violently invading the supernatural realm. Awareness of baby Immanuel lying in a manger sent a shock wave through demonic forces in the second heavens. The kingdom of darkness was shaken to its core, never to fully recover.
We read in Matthew 2 that King Herod and the Magi from the East learned that Jesus had been born in Bethlehem. Both were clearly aware of His deity, yet their responses to Him were far from the same. Though a king, Herod was merely a pawn in the kingdom of darkness that is built around the emotion of fear. Because he is afraid, satan is constantly leading his followers to steal, kill, and destroy. Herod's response to Father God's gift of perfect love was violence stemming from fear – an edict to kill all the boys in Bethlehem below the age of two.
Passionately pursuing God, the Magi were led to Bethlehem by a star shining out glory from the Kingdom of Light. The center of this Kingdom is the perfect love of God, which destroys all fear. They responded to God's love by expressing love to Immanuel in every possible way.
Both the Magi and King Herod were consciously aware of Jesus' divine nature. But the path to abundant life goes well beyond mere belief in the reality of God. James 2:19 reminds us that "Even the demons believe that – and shudder." The crucial moment in life is when we decide how to respond to Immanuel. As Jesus' disciples our response is based in love, not fear. In this season we are reminded to be like the Magi – demonstrating our love for God by honoring His Son. This causes great celebration in Heaven!
Two thousand years ago wise men from the east experienced the joy of Christmas by allowing the Spirit of God to lead them to Jesus. As participants in the Kingdom of Light, they responded to God's love by showing their love for Him through obedience, worship and the giving of gifts. The Spirit purposefully led each of these responses. A vital message of Christmas is that we also would yield our hearts and lives to the blowing of God's Spirit-wind.
May you be blessed throughout this season as you, like the Magi, respond in love to the glorious peace that is Immanuel.
Dr. Dan Wilson
Supernatural Marriage Ministries
Dr. Dan Wilson and his wife Linda are the co-founders of Supernatural Marriage Ministries, and have dedicated their lives to drawing couples into the type of intimacy that is driven by the Holy Spirit. They have taken their message to numerous countries throughout the world in an effort to encourage the Kingdom and prepare the Bride for the Bridegroom's return. They have published three books since 2010 and produced the popular worship CD "CHOSEN: You Are My Desire" in 2012.