“For it was to him no lowering to put on what he himself has made. Let that handiwork be forever glorified, which became the cloak of its own creator.”
– John Chrysostom
Timothy Keller once wrote that the message of Christmas is that God comes to us and that we cannot come to God. The implications of Emmanuel (God with us) is profound, for we will always live in the reality that we are on a visited planet. God came down and took on flesh for us. The Word, as John would write, wrapped Himself in a human body to provide humanity a way to God.
The Word was the inspiration and giver of breath for the created world. He was there at the beginning of it all. Athanasius wrote that “there is no inconsistency between creation and salvation for the One Father has employed the same Agent for both works, effecting the salvation of the world through the same Word who made it in the beginning.” The second person of the Trinity both made and then redeemed that fallen creation. It was not a detriment for Him to take on flesh. Instead He humbled Himself in order to restore humanity to the possibility of a right relationship with their God.
Thanks be to God for making and redeeming us! As Chrysostom wrote, “To Him, then, who out of confusion has wrought a clean path; to Christ, to the Father, and to the Holy Spirit, we offer all praise, now and forever. Amen.”