This is an excerpt from today’s sermon based on John 1:1-14
In America, one of the most famous architects was a man named Frank Lloyd-Wright. He was a genius and much of what makes American architecture beautiful and inspiring is a direct result of his imaginative, creative, or the indirect result of those who sought to copy him. His influence in both public and private buildings cannot be overstated.
Now imagine moving into one of his creations unaware of the fact that it was a Lloyd-Wright home. You decide to buy it not because it is one of his designs, but simply because you like the way it feels and looks. Over time you fall in love with the home and begin to show it off to your friends, and it receives universal acclaim.
Some of your more informed friends try to tell you it was designed by the incomparable Frank Lloyd Wright and you say, “Yes, so I have heard…and by the way, who is Frank Lloyd-Wright?”
One day, unbeknownst to you, Frank Lloyd-Wright himself arrives at your doorstep and asks if you will show him around a bit. You give him the usual tour and share your enthusiasm with him, but then he begins to tell you about the home and to point out features of the home you had never noticed before, how the lines of the ceilings gracefully join up with the lines of the walls, how the windows open up onto a vista that changes with the passing of the seasons and how the positioning of the windows are placed to maximize the effects of those changes, how the house is perfectly balanced on the hillside to look as if it has always been there, instead of being an unwanted intrusion onto the natural landscape.
And, instead of thanking him for his in depth knowledge of the place, or perhaps even wondering yourself if he had something to do with its creation, you grow jealous of his intimate knowledge and close your mind to what he is saying. The more he tells you about the house, the more you simply want him to leave, not because he is unkind or pushy, but simply because you prefer your own interpretation to his.
Your house is your kingdom and there is room in your mind for only one king and naturally, that is you. And so, Mr. Wright can do nothing but leave you hoping that one day you will see the light and recognize him as the one who designed your home and allows you the privilege of living there.
It was the same with Jesus. He was and is the creator and we have long marvelled at the astonishing beauty of his creation. We have fallen in love with it as our home and sought to make it our own and quite right, for it was given to us as a gift and we have been from the beginning encouraged to use it for our pleasure, and we do. But, more often than not we do so without acknowledging the one who created it.
We enjoy the works of our hands, without asking where our hands came from in the first place. We claim the ability to make and earn money, without giving credit to the one who gives ability. We rejoice at the birth of children and grandchildren, but fail to give due credit to the one who crafted them as unique and original gifts.
We live in homes that are warm and eat rich foods and wear fine clothing without pausing to consider that we have these things as gifts from the generous hand of the one who created them…
…acknowledging Christ is to know him as a brother and a friend, and yet recognizing beyond any shadow of a doubt that he is also the one who has literally given us life and breath.
Let us worship him and adore him, the newborn king.