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December 23 – The day of the righteous branch

…I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he will reign as king and deal wisely….And this is the name by which he will be called: “The Lord is our righteousness.” – Jeremiah 23:5,6

Scripture reading: Jeremiah 23:1-8

In His human nature, Jesus is a descendant of David. He is David’s heir, the true king of God’s people. So many earthly kings, including many of those following after David, were evil. Our Lord Jesus, however, was born the righteous One. He is the King of the church even now and rules with justice. In His eternal kingdom, we believers will enjoy salvation and security, peace and happiness, forever under His gracious rule.

By the Spirit’s inspiration, Jeremiah revealed that the Messiah, David’s holy descendant, would bear a marvellous name, the Lord is our righteousness. Jesus was born to be our righteousness. Our Saviour provides every believer with a standing before God. Because He covers our sins with His perfect sacrifice, the crushing burden of our sin and shame is lifted. We are made right with God now and always.

At this Christmas season there is much celebrating. So many enjoy dinners and parties. There are all kinds of sentimental movies on TV about Santa and, sadly, that’s what secular people think Christmas is all about. It’s not. We Christians, however, know the truth. We celebrate the birth of our glorious King. Jesus was born to rule over us now and always. He is the righteous Branch, the One Who provides salvation for His people, who are clothed in His perfect righteousness. May this truth be the centre of your celebration. Christmas is the Day of the Righteous Branch.

Suggestions for prayer

Ask the Lord to fill your heart with gratitude for sending His Son to be the Righteous Branch for you. Pray for God’s Kingdom on earth, the church, that she may faithfully submit to His rule in all things.

Rev. Gregg V. Martin has pastored a total of five congregations in three Canadian provinces since he was ordained in 1977, and also served for more than seven years in Latin America as a missionary. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.

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