Tonight, while many people are making resolutions about how to improve their life next year, based on the memories of our failures this past year, the church remembers something very different - the circumcision of our Lord. We do so because January 1st is eight days after Christmas, and Jesus was circumcised eight days after His birth.
It seems strange to some, not just to remember but to celebrate such a small thing, and a thing not talked about in polite company. But commemorating our Lord’s circumcision is more than just remembering an historical fact - it is commemorating our Lord’s resolve to save us. For unlike so many of our resolutions, the Lord’s resolve has never wavered, and never will. The reason He is circumcised is for the same reason He was born, lived a life of flawless and complete obedience, died, and rose - for you. To do everything necessary for your salvation.
And it is especially significant that this overlaps New Year’s Eve. For as we look back over the past year, we do so relying on the Lord’s forgiveness for our sins. And as we look forward to the new year, we do so relying on the Lord’s grace. Without Him, the past is a graveyard of regrets and the future an uncertain and fearful unknown. But with Him, we can be confident. For He who holds all of time in His hands, works all things for your good. And so 2015 will be another year of His grace, just as 2014 was.
So tonight, we remember and celebrate not our promises but His. Not our work but His. And not what we will accomplish next year, but what He will. It started with His circumcision on the eighth day, and is leading us to that day that will never end. And so in Him, it may not be a “happy” New Year, but it will be a blessed one. In Him. That’s His resolve for you.