Moses said, “The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brothers. You shall listen to him in whatever he tells you. And it shall be that every soul who does not listen to that prophet shall be destroyed from the people.” And all the prophets who have spoken, from Samuel and those who came after him, also proclaimed these days. You are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant that God made with your fathers, saying to Abraham, “And in your off-spring shall all the families of the earth be blessed.” God, having raised up his servant, sent him to you first, to bless you by turning every one of you from your wickedness.
From the same passage, we now learn that part of the blessing is the demonstration of the truthfulness of God.
Peter piles up the promises. In verse 22 he says that Moses predicted the coming of a prophet like himself. In verse 24 he says that all the prophets from Samuel on down proclaimed these days—the days of Jesus. In verse 25 he says that God made a promise to Abraham about these days. The point is that when Jesus comes, he confirms the truth of all these promises. He shows that God is trustworthy; he keeps his word.
Here is the way Paul put it in Romans 15:8: “Christ became a servant to the circumcised [that is, the Jews] to show God’s truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs.” So there it is, stated crystal clear: Christ came to prove that God tells the truth, that God keeps his promises. Christmas means that God can be trusted.
This is part of the blessing that he brings and that he offers you in this Christmas season. It is a blessing because where it is forsaken, moral and spiritual life disintegrates. The foundation of moral life is God’s truthfulness. A society that forsakes the centrality of the absolute truthfulness of God forsakes the foundation of truth, the foundation of morality, and the foundation of beauty.
Christmas is the reassertion of the foundation of all truth and goodness and beauty, because Christmas means: God is truthful.
God’s truthfulness is the constant in a universe of flux. God’s truthfulness is the unwavering absolute. If we forsake God’s truthfulness, the anchor is up, the rudder is loose, the keel is broken, and the ship of life (political life, social life, educational life, scientific life, family life) is simply at the mercy of the wind of human wishes.
So I say it with all my heart: demonstrating the truthfulness of God is a great blessing. Give that blessing to your children. Say to the next generation again and again: God is truthful; God keeps his word; God does not lie; God can be trusted! That’s one blessing of this season. Receive it as a wonderful Christmas gift, and give it to as many people as you can.