Today's reading: Revelation 12
And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron. But her child was snatched away and take to God and to his throne. Revelation 12:5 NRSV
This verse is a Christmas story and yet not a Christmas story. It is reminiscent of the prophecies concerning Jesus' birth. In addition, we know that Jesus is to rule all the nations. And Jesus was taken away in the ascension.
The passage is also part of a longer vision about the conflict between good/God and evil/Satan. The child is snatched away in order to protect him from evil. The woman must flee and her other children are in danger. Even in her distress the woman is being provided for in the wilderness.
In the midst of the Christmas story, we sometimes forget the larger story of poverty, politics, death and survival. These elements are there in the presence of the shepherds, the wise men, Herod and the other children of Bethlehem. God breaks into the midst of all these things with the birth of Jesus. Despite the danger, God is willing and eager to share his mercy, life and grace.
God, thank you for the gift of your son, Jesus. Thank you that you continue to offer your Gift in our desperate circumstances. In Jesus name. Amen.
Copyright 2010 Amelia G. Sims