WHAT CHILD IS THIS?
What child is this, in Mary’s lap is sleeping? I wonder. This child is like none other. Not one other baby was ever born of a virgin. Who ever heard of such a thing? How could young Mary have grasped this news from an angel? And Joseph…how could he have possibly believed it when he was told? This is no ordinary baby. This question, “what child is this?” demands an answer.
What child is this, though a King, would be born in a stable? No other child in all the earth that was destined to be a king would come from such humble beginnings. That first night when the Christ-child’s first cry pierced the cold night air, no dignitaries or ambassadors waited outside His door. But He shared the same hay and manger of lowing cattle and bleating sheep. Lowly animals, do you know who was born that night in your stable? If they could talk, perhaps they would say: “No castle or mansion is fit for this child…for humility quietly speaks from the heart of this soon-to-be King of Kings.”
What child is this that would cause the wisest men of three kingdoms to seek Him out? What baby has ever been given the gift of gold that kings receive? Or the kernels of incense that priests receive? Or the spices of a rich man’s burial? These magi know the Creator created a star just to guide them to this baby, born a king. These three sages could answer our question: “This is the One the universe mapped our course to find the very Creator of the stars.”
What child is this that would cause shepherds to seek a baby? This One who would seek and save the lost has drawn shepherds to seek this very stable. No other event was worthy to make a shepherd abandon his flock. But this Lamb’s blood would do more than atone for one man’s sin…His blood would atone for the sins of all mankind. So the shepherds would answer the question with the reply: “This child is none other than the Lamb of God.”
What child is this that would summon angels away from the throne…whose primary purpose is to worship Him who sits on the throne? With heaven’s sweet voices they heralded the news of this baby to the would-be mother, the would-be father, and to lowly shepherds. No one else in history had angels sing to them, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.” So the angels would declare the answer, “This baby is our master…the Lord of Heaven. We have know Him for eternity.”
What child is this that causes young Joseph to have a vivid dream that his wife-to-be would bear a son? What would cause him to not dismiss this as a bad dream? This dream…did it make you want to run away from the responsibility of giving him your name? How do you father a child who is the father of all mankind? Perhaps Joseph would answer our question: “This Child taught me more about love and acceptance than all creation…this Child is God the Son who would save His people from their sins.”
What child is this that lies sleeping in your lap, Mary? Did you know that your baby existed before you…that this one you hold in your arms is the Great I Am? Mary, did you know that your baby, whom you bore through the water, would make you born again in the Spirit? Did you know that your baby that you delivered in pain, came to deliver you…that He was born with nails in His hands? What child is this? Perhaps she would say, “If you truly know my son, then you know that His death has become more precious than His life…for He is Christ the Lord, our Savior.”
What child is this that would impact us so many years removed from His birth? Can you think of any whose name is more precious, even two thousand years later? Is there any child’s birth more renown? Has any other child given so many a new life, a new name, a new eternal home? There is none other! There is no one like the Christ Child! And we, too, have come to worship You!
(Sing) “This, this is Christ the King whom shepherds guard and angels sing. Haste, haste to bring Him laud, the Babe, the Son of Mary.”