Christmas is a joyous time for many reasons (Grrr… and how I wish it came around very often). It’s the time of the year we remember the humiliation of Christ. Well I know you didn’t expect me to put it that way. But truth is that in the incarnation of Christ – the infinite Son of God being born and taking on the form of a son of man – and born in a poor family; being made subject to the law and suffering the miseries of this life, enduring ultimately the wrath of God, and the curse of death on the cross.
The Bible begins its narrative in Genesis with the chronicling of the innocence and glorious beautiful world that God created. He creates man and places him in His garden (Eden) and there man too lives unashamed, untainted and un humiliated …
[Genesis Chapter 2, verse 25] reads, “They were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.”
This tells us that before sin came into the world, there was no shame. There was no embarrassment. The experience of humiliation was completely unknown and foreign to the human race. However, along with the first experience of sin came the awful burden of the weight of personal shame and embarrassment.
Shame and embarrassment are feelings and experiences that occur to us in various degrees. The worst kind of shame, the most dreadful form of embarrassment, is that which results in utter and complete humiliation. Humiliation brings with it not merely the reddened face of embarrassment but also the sense of despair as we lose our dignity and our reputations are cast into ruin.
Yet it was precisely into this domain of shame and humiliation that our Savior came voluntarily in the incarnation. The popular hymn, “Ivory Palaces,” depicts this descent from glory — the Son of Man’s voluntary departure from the ivory palace that is His eternal dwelling place. He chose willingly to make Himself of no reputation, to become a man and a servant, obedient even unto death.
I find the summary of the gospel message graciously penciled and underlined in Second Corinthians chapter eight and in the verse ninth verse:
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.
Excerpt from Humiliation to Exaltation by R.C Sproul.
I like the word condescension (to the world) which certainly implies humility.