#791: Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne

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Reflections by the Pond
December 19, 2016

He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him.

John 1:10-11

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We were the least lovely, but the Loveliest of all came for us anyway. We were drenched with sin, but the One without sin came for us anyway. We were proud, arrogant, brimming with love for ourselves, but in humility He who judges the universe came for us anyway. He knew we would not love Him, that we would reject and kill Him, but He came for us anyway.

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Thou didst leave Thy throne and Thy kingly crown,
When Thou camest to earth for me;
But in Bethlehem's home was there found no room
For Thy holy nativity.
O come to my heart, Lord Jesus,
There is room in my heart for Thee.

From the very beginning He was unwelcome, but He came anyway. Having made us, Jesus knew well His creation. He was not surprised. If Jesus had been only human, He might have pushed back: He might have insisted on a more extravagant birth, a more cosmopolitan hometown, a more befitting reception.

But, being God, He understood the stakes.

Heaven's arches rang when the angels sang,
Proclaiming Thy royal degree;
But in lowly birth didst Thou come to earth,
And in great humility.
O come to my heart, Lord Jesus,
There is room in my heart for Thee.

Because the Godhead is spirit-kind, the Son of God could have come down to earth as spirit. But spirit cannot be nailed to a cross; spirit cannot suffer the agony of iron spikes driven through flesh. Spirit cannot swoon from the pain of thorns digging into scalp. Spirit cannot take a spear into the side. Spirit cannot struggle for air against the fluid filling his lungs.

Though spirit-kind, the Son of God had to come as flesh, for only as flesh could He die.

Thou camest, O Lord, as the living Word
That should set Thy people free;
But with mocking scorn and with crown of thorn,
They bore Thee to Calvary.
O come to my heart, Lord Jesus,
There is room in my heart for Thee.

Jesus knew that His was the mission of a personal Savior, that He came to redeem individuals, not humanity en masse. He would first change, then dwell in individual hearts, making His home not in the sequestered grandeur of a universal temple, but in the homely tenderness of the human heart.

While it is true that we are invited to Christ by the convicting Spirit, we must invite Jesus to come into our hearts. And if we do, when next we see Him face to face, flesh to flesh, it will be He who invites us to dwell in His home.

When the heav'ns shall ring, and the angels sing,
At Thy coming in victory,
Let Thy voice call me home, saying “Yet there is room,
There is room at My side for thee.”
My heart shall rejoice, Lord Jesus,
When Thou comest and callest for me.

Emily E. S. Elliott

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...although He existed in the form of God, [Jesus] did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:5-11