1. Wrong politics.
2. We wear robes, ride donkeys, deal in straw and mangers no more than once a year. The Word can become flesh only in distant times and places – not ordinary circumstances.
3. We have conflict – people get upset. Jesus never had that problem. Wherever He went, trouble stopped and people were nice.
4. We don’t have a large crowd. God likes a big crowd and will do anything to be popular. That’s why He hangs out with TV evangelists.
5. We don’t have enough money. Without purchasing power, what can God do? The devil, on the other hand, takes Mastercard.
6. We have too much money. We are not starving or naked. God only sympathizes with Third World people.
7. Our choir is too small. We have some, but not “hosts” of heavenly voices.
8. Our worship is not adequate because the pastor does not do it well enough for us.
9. The sanctuary is too hot.
10. The sanctuary is too cold.
11. We are not busy enough doing good – – we are too busy doing good to waste time watching in prayer.
12. We are too far from a large urban area. Important things only happen in big cities.
13. We’re not Jews – nor any other minority. God loves the Jews best and other minorities next. Everybody else, especially WASP males, are other people’s Pharaoh.
14. Despite Dr. Phil’s best efforts, we are not schooled enough in the latest self-help psychology. Sometimes I can’t tell my Myers-Briggs type from my codependency and addictive behaviors to save my soul.
15. Our families are too dysfunctional, unlike families in the Bible.
16. Our families are too normal. We can’t find the right therapy group because adult children of normal families don’t have problems.
17. God cannot become flesh here because some of us have been known to sin, and God has nothing to do with sinners.
18. The Word could never become flesh here because few of us were ever sinful enough to provide steamy testimonies.
19. Our faith is small and mixed with doubt. The mustard seed would mark a big increase.
20. We are not schooled enough in Scripture and theology to appreciate what would be taking place if the Word were to become flesh.
21. We are too educated. God only comes to the simpleminded and untutored.
22. The whole idea of God becoming flesh is suspect. Why bother? Direct Spirit to spirit communication is more dignified.
23. Taking flesh means assuming a sexual identity. That might have been all right in those patriarchal days, but today? What an unliberated thing to do.
24. The story smacks too much of God’s sovereignty. We now realize that people control events and that the future is in our hands.
25. We fail and Jesus doesn’t hang out with failures.
I could be wrong though. Paul says that, “in the fullness of time, God sent His own son, born of a woman, born under the law, to purchase freedom for the subjects of the law, in order that we might attain to the status of [children]”. Is there any possibility left?
(See if you can find the Holy Family in the painting above called The Numbering.)