Today, as a special Christmas gift to you and me, my husband Mike (a.k.a. Mr. Adventure) has written the Christmas narrative through the warrior eyes of a US Marine. What we often remember as a silent night was actually a staged rescue, a strategic ambush, an act of war. I’ll allow the Marine to elaborate. He retells the story so much better.
“Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others- the armies of heaven– praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” (Luke 2:13-14)
Often we think of the Christmas story as a tranquil event, a sleepy story that peacefully unfolded in the remote corners of nighttime Bethlehem — where docile sheep and oxen surrounded Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus in a cozy little stable.
But in fact, the Christmas story is “linked to danger and to ancient conflict between good and evil”. The story relays the details of a successful invasion into enemy territory, an invasion planned long ago that would change the entire course of the war. The birth of Jesus was a spiritual D-Day. God came to earth as the Rescuer King.
Angels no doubt battled unseen forces to protect Mary and Joseph as they made the long, dusty journey from Galilee to Judea. The enemy threw all his might into stopping this invasion. He planted seeds of doubt in Joseph’s mind and incited Herod’s deadly jealously.
But he failed – Jesus Christ was born on that quiet night in Bethlehem! The King of kings and Lord of lords humbled himself and dwelt among us. The Creator of the stars lay in a dirty manger below a bright shining star announcing His birth to the world.
The armies of heaven appeared suddenly in the night, as if pausing mid-battle to celebrate a long awaited and hard fought victory. Their celebration was staged on the outskirts of Bethlehem as they secured the perimeter. They cried out, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” Their praise rang out over the hillside declaring victory over the enemy!
The angels rejoiced because Jesus’ arrival was the beginning of the end. The end of suffering. The end of death. The end of the enemy’s rule on earth. Jesus’ birth brought new hope and light to the battlefield. The Light of the world had come to save the world from darkness.
Jesus Christ, our Messiah and Savior, has come and secured our victory. We are claimed as rescued ones.
Merry Christmas and Semper Fidelis!