“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Though you are little among the thousands of Judah, Yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be ruler in Israel, Whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.” Micah 5:2. (NKJV)
“To proceed at once to what we have to say to you, we notice first who it was that sent Christ forth.
God the Father here speaks, and says, “Out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be ruler in Israel.”
First, then, WHO SENT JESUS CHRIST? The answer is returned to us by the words of the text.
“Out of you,” says Jehovah, speaking by the mouth of Micah, “out of you shall He come forth unto Me.” It is a sweet thought that Jesus Christ did not come forth without His Father’s permission, authority, consent, and assistance. He was sent of the Father that He might be the Savior of men. We are, alas, too apt to forget that while there are distinctions as to the persons in the Trinity, there are no distinctions of honor—and we do very frequently ascribe the honor of our salvation, or at least the depths of its mercy, and the extremity of its benevolence more to Jesus Christ than we do to the Father. This is a very great mistake! What if Jesus came? Did not His Father send Him? If He were made a child, did not the Holy Spirit beget Him? If He spoke wondrously, did not His Father pour grace into His lips that He might be an able minister of the new covenant? If His Father did forsake Him when He drank the bitter cup of gall, did He not still love Him? And did He not, by-and-by, after three days raise Him from the dead, and at last receive Him up on high, leading captivity captive? Ah, beloved, he who knows the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit as he should know them never sets one before another! He is not more thankful to one than the other; he sees them at Bethlehem, at Gethsemane, and on Calvary all equally engaged in the work of salvation! “He shall come forth unto Me.” O Christian, have you put your confidence in the man, Christ Jesus? Have you placed your reliance solely on Him? And are you united with Him? Then believe that you are united unto the God of heaven, since to the man, Christ Jesus, you are brother, and hold closest fellowship! You are linked thereby with God the Eternal, and “the Ancient of days” is your Father and your Friend! “He shall come forth unto Me.”
Did you never see the depth of love there was in the heart of Jehovah, when God the Father equipped His Son for the great enterprise of mercy? There had been a sad day in heaven once before, when Satan fell and dragged with him a third of the stars of heaven, and when the Son of God launching from His great right hand the omnipotent thunders, dashed the rebellious crew to the pit of perdition. But if we could conceive a grief in heaven—that must have been a sadder day when the Son of the Most High left His Father’s bosom where He had lain from before all worlds. “Go,” said the Father, “and Your Father’s blessing on Your head!” Then comes the unrobing; how angels crowd around to see the Son of God take off His robes! He laid aside His crown; He said, “My Father, I am Lord over all, blessed forever; but I will lay My crown aside and be as mortal men are.” He strips Himself of His bright vest of glory. “Father,” He said, “I will wear a robe of clay; just such as men wear.” Then He takes off all those jewels wherewith He was glorified; He lays aside His starry mantles and robes of light to dress Himself in the simple garments of the peasant of Galilee! What a solemn disrobing that must have been! And next, can you picture the dismissal? The angels attend the Savior through the streets until they approach the doors; an angel cries, “Lift up your heads, O you gates, and be you lifted up, you everlasting doors, and let the king of glory through!” Oh, I think the angels must have wept when they lost the company of Jesus—when the sun of heaven bereaved them of all its light! But they went after Him; they descended with Him, and when His spirit entered into flesh and He became a baby, He was attended by that mighty host of angels who after they had been with Him to Bethlehem’s manger, and seen Him safely laid on His mother’s breast—in their journey upwards appeared to the shepherds, and told them that He was born king of the Jews! The Father sent Him! Contemplate that subject! Let your soul get hold of it, and in every period of His life think that He suffered what the Father willed—that every step of His life was marked with the approval of the great I AM. Let every thought that you have of Jesus be also connected with the eternal, ever-blessed God, for, “He,” says Jehovah, “shall come forth to Me.” Who sent Him then? The answer is, His Father!”
-Charles Spurgeon Sermon #57 The New Park Street Pulpit 1 Volume 2 www.spurgeongems.org
THE INCARNATION AND BIRTH OF CHRIST NO. 57 A SERMON DELIVERED ON SABBATH MORNING, DECEMBER 23, 1855, BY THE REV. C. H. SPURGEON, AT NEW PARK STREET CHAPEL, SOUTHWARK.