“And while they were there, the time came for [Mary] to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn….For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:6-7+11)
The high king of heaven landed in a manger. Love Himself was rejected. If you’ve ever felt like you didn’t fit in no matter how hard you tried, no-one can empathise more than perfection Himself being told there is no room at the inn.
Though He is in very nature God, though it wasn’t and isn’t robbery for Him to consider Himself equal with God, though He could have come in any way and any form, He chose not to grasp hold of the appearance of His royal reality at all costs. He chose to come down.
He was born “Saviour…who is Christ the Lord”, He didn’t become a saviour, He didn’t become anointed. God came down. This very act changed everything. The Incarnation was the start of atonement, the unravelling of all wrong things. As Edward Irving taught, His life was atonement, His ministry was atonement, His travail in Gethsemane and others’ unbelief/vilification of Him was atonement, His corporeal suffering was atonement, His death (including every phase of death experienced), His burial all were atonement – and according to the book of Hebrews it was completed not just when He rose at the resurrection, but when He ascended and made atonement in the throne room of heaven. But it began as a baby. It began when He came down.
He. Came. Down.
(See also Phil 2; 2 Cor 8:9)