Gift-giving is without a doubt a celebrated tradition during the holiday season and on special occasions throughout the year. Billions of dollars in gifts like books, art, clothing, toys, gadgets, cookware and jewelry are exchanged around the globe. But like any earthly possession, these gifts don’t last.
By the next holiday, the clothes are worn, the toys are broken, the perfume is used up, and the pots and pans are scratched. Sooner or later, every gift is destined for the dumpster or donation pile. No earthly gift, no matter how priceless or thoughtful, will last forever, but there is a heavenly gift that does.
The course of history changed when Jesus entered the scene. Wrapped up in the person of Jesus Christ are all the answers to our questions, the fulfillment of our needs, and the satisfaction to our longings. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, here are some of the ways Jesus is the ultimate gift to mankind.
1.Jesus Is Our Righteousness
“Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone” (Romans 5:18). In the garden, we lost our relationship with God because we were covered in the filth of sin, and the penalty to remove the filth was more than we could afford. When Jesus stepped in to pay the penalty for us, new life and a relationship with God became available to all who believe. When God looks at His children, he sees Jesus’ righteousness, which can never be damaged or deleted.
2.Jesus Is Our Shepherd
“The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name” (Psalm 23:1-3).
A shepherd faithfully tends to the needs of his wayward and belligerent flock. Day after day, he guides them to food and water, protects them from danger, and keeps them healthy. They can do nothing for themselves, but he willingly does everything for them. This is what Christ does for us every day, tending to His flock with kindness and tenderness. “I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep, and they know me, just as my Father knows me and I know the Father. So I sacrifice my life for the sheep” (John 10:14-15).
3.Jesus Is Our Healer
The Lord is our healer, healing both physical and spiritual maladies. “Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases” (Psalm 103:2-3). No illness, injury or emotional wound is too deep or too complex for Him to bring wholeness to the affected area. While the answers to these needs may be different from the ones we imagined, we can trust that His goodness is never in error as He works His healing ways in our lives.
4.Jesus Is Our Overcomer
When you picture an overcomer, what comes to mind? An overcomer is one who is the catalyst for victory, without whom a win would be impossible. That person tips the scales in the favor of victory. Jesus is our overcomer, who secured our salvation and victory (here on earth and in the future) and has tipped the scales in our favor. “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
5.Jesus Is Our Peace
In our culture, peace is often defined as the absence of strife and chaos, but as Christians, we enjoy a deeper meaning of peace. Peace is not just the absence of chaos, but the presence of someone, namely Jesus. He comes to us in the midst of any circumstance and creates peace right where He stands. In the midst of strife. In the midst of daily living. In the midst of noise. In the midst of terror and war, “He will be our peace…” (Micah 5:5, NIV).
6.Jesus Is Our Hope
Jesus is our hope in the fiercest of storms, and His hope lights up our life like a beacon on the shore. His hope is the only anchor worth hanging on to in a world that constantly shakes and changes. Yes, we are called to endure such shaking and changing, but such calamities don’t define us. They are not the end of our story. Our hope in Christ can’t be shaken, outdated or deleted. “This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary” (Hebrews 6:19).
Jesus is the only beautiful, eternal gift in a world of temporal and disposable gifts. He came to this earth so we could have a relationship with Him, and to give us full and abundant life. A life wrapped up in the perfect person of Jesus.