Heaven's Headline

by Pastor Andrew Wolfenbarger

Luke 1:30-‬33 - “And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”

In 1897, the most famous words in American journalism were printed in the upper left-hand corner of the New York Times. They appeared with no fanfare and with little warning. The short slogan “All the News That’s Fit to Print” has occupied that space on every cover of the Times since. It was a statement intended to differentiate the journalistic practices of the Times from the sensationalist practices of its chief competitors the New York Sun and the New York Journal. Both of which had begun reporting news that we might refer to today as “click-bait” or “tabloid-style journalism”. It’s a statement that indicates that some news is worth reporting and other news isn’t.

Luke opens his gospel in Luke 1:3-‬4 essentially saying, “I intend to report to you all the News that’s Fit to print.” Shortly into the first chapter, he details when the angel Gabriel informed Mary of the child that should be born. In his description which we may consider “Heaven’s Headline”, we observe several divine qualities revealing that Jesus is the long-awaited Christ.‬

1. His Unequaled Relationship with the Father
– “shall be called the Son of the Highest”
Every man, woman, and child who has ever lived has had some connection with God. In the most generic sense, we are all His creatures made in His image. In a more personal sense, we all relate to Him in faith or unbelief. We either choose to accept Him or reject Him. So, we are all spiritually accountable to Him. Finally, for those who do believe and trust in Him, we are born into the family of God and we become His child. (John 1:12, 1 John 3:1) Yet, Gabriel didn’t introduce Jesus as a son of God. Instead, he declared Him to be “THE Son of God”; thereby, making Jesus equal with the Father. (John 5:18, 19:7)

2. His Unprecedented Identification with David
– “the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David”
In 2 Samuel 7:13, God made a covenant with David that his throne would be established forever. Isaiah 9:7 foretells One who would come and ultimately fulfill this covenant. By the time Jesus is announced by Gabriel, David’s lineage was almost untraceable. The throne of Israel had been overthrown by various foreign powers. Still, Gabriel's announcement directly connects Jesus as one of David’s descendants and while Luke’s genealogy traces Jesus’ heritage to Adam, John's genealogical record connects Him to King David as the rightful heir to the throne.

3. His Unending Rule as King
– “he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”
Abraham and David both received covenants from God but neither man lived to personally see the covenant fulfilled. Abraham had a handful of children and grandchildren when he died at 175 years old, but it would be generous to call them a nation, especially one capable of blessing the whole world. David died and conceded his throne in a time of prosperity and peace, but Solomon would lead it into spiritual and moral decay. In this sense, the covenants that God made with these men outlived them. Jesus, on the other hand, would personally carry out this eternal reign. No mere mortal could do that, but the immortal God certainly could.

You see, one only needs to read a little way into the gospel records to realize the clear truth that Jesus is declared to be the Son of God with power. That His death alone could pardon mankind’s rebellion against a Holy God and that His resurrection verified His claims of Deity and substantiated His promises of eternal life found only by trusting in His name.

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