Devotional

“I will make you into a great nation. I will bless you and make you famous, and you will be a blessing to others.” – Genesis 12:2.

Perhaps nothing could be more applicable in this season in which we celebrate the birth of Christ into human form then by stopping to consider just how great an impact He has had on the human race. Most people default to Jesus coming to earth, dying on the cross and rising from the dead the third day as His mission. And that is true. But the repercussions of His birth are ever more far reaching. The birth of Christ has had a ripple effect that has changed many areas of our lives forever.

Over the centuries, Christianity has changed the value attached to human life; especially to children, women, and the elderly. Prior to the birth of Jesus, the killing of infants and abandonment were common practices. Over time, the influence of Christianity has stopped that practice. Prior to the Christian influence, a woman’s life was very cheap, In most ancient cultures, the wife was the property of her husband. Today that has changed. In America, we take our values on human life for granted. But had Christ never been born, it would have been a far different story – human life would be disposable.

Other ripples caused by the birth of Jesus include how we look at those in need. Before the advent of Christianity there was no organized charitable effort at large in the world. The example and teaching of Jesus changed the way the world reacted to those in need, especially the poor, the widowed and the orphaned. Hospitals as we know them began through the influence of Christianity. Christianity also gave rise to nursing care. The Red Cross was started by an evangelical Christian. It is not hard to come to the conclusion that a world without Christ would be a world without charity.

Another ripple is education. The phenomenon of education for everyone has its roots in Christianity. It is Christianity that has given rise to the concept of education for everyone. The greatest universities worldwide were started by Christians for Christian purposes. Almost every one of the first 123 colleges and universities in the United States has Christian origins.

When Jesus Christ took upon Himself the form of man, He instilled in mankind a dignity and inherent value that had never been dreamed of before. Whatever Jesus touched or whatever He did transformed that aspect of human life. Many people will read about the innumerable small incidents in the life of Christ while never dreaming that those casually mentioned “little” things transformed the history of mankind.

Discussion Questions:

  1. How would the world be different if Jesus was never born?
  2. How would your life be different if Jesus was never born?