Recent years have bought us many new and wonderful Christmas songs, and one is on its way to becoming an enduring classic is Mary, Did You Know?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day walk on water?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you’ve delivered, will soon deliver you
Mary did you know that your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary did you know that your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know that your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
When you kiss your little baby, you kiss the face of God
The blind will see, the deaf will hear, the dead will live again
The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, the praises of the lamb
Mary did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your baby boy is heaven’s perfect lamb?
That sleeping child you’re holding is the great I AM.
The haunting music accompanying these powerful lyrics moves listeners to reflect on the reality of the true identity of the child in the manger. While there is much to contemplate throughout this song, for the sake of time and space in this post, let’s just focus in on the last line.
That sleeping child you’re holding is the great I AM
Students of the Old Testament will immediately remember the name “I AM” first being used by God when He spoke to Moses from the burning bush and commissioned him to lead Israel out of Egyptian bondage. Hesitant and fearful to embrace this monumental job, Moses asks the Almighty for His name so that he could tell the Israelites who had sent him. God responds in Exodus 3:14, ““I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’” And verse 15 goes on to emphasize the eternal nature of this designation. ““This is my name forever, the name you shall call me from generation to generation.”
Jump ahead several centuries to where Jesus, after being challenged by the Pharisees ends the confrontation with by applying this same holy name to himself. “Before Abraham was, I AM.” (John 8:58) This claim to be of the same essence as the God of the Exodus was such a bold claim that his listeners prepared to stone Him for what they thought was blasphemy. (vs. 59)
So, the question this Christmas season asks the world is not ‘do you believe in Jesus the baby?’. That’s actually kind of safe and inoffensive. After all, what can a helpless baby actually demand of you? But the question this song, this holiday, and the entire Bible poses to every person in the world to answer is:
Do you know this baby boy as the Lord of all Creation, the Ruler of the nations, and the Great I AM?
Our glorious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, to whom we have trusted our eternal souls, is more than just baby… more than a teacher or healer. He is the Alpha & Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. (Rev. 1:8; 17) He defeated death and offers life to all who believe. As you contemplate Christmas this year, don’t just look toward the manger, but also see past it and understand that Jesus is your sin-bearing Savior who is also the eternal Lord and King.
May the Holy Child of Bethlehem ~who is the Great I AM ~ find a home in your heart this Christmas season!