For to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.
What does that word Christ mean, and what does it teach us? To the Jew of that day, and even to the Pagan, there could have been no doubt as to the meaning of this word Christ, the Christos, the Anointed, one representing to him some person who had been publicly set apart to some great office among men. Anointing was that act by which, especially among the Jews, a man was set apart to some Divinely appointed office among the people; the prophet who was to speak to the people from God, the priest who was to minister to the people in holy things for God, the king who was to rule in God's glory over God's own people, were solemnly set apart by anointing to their office. What they would have called anointing we now call consecration — the publicly and divinely ordered sanctioning and setting apart of a man for an office in which he is to minister unto men and for God. This is anointing, and more than this, it implies that with the appointment and consecration came a power and a grace to fit a man for the office he received. When our Lord, then, is called the Anointed One, the Christ, it means that He is the One of all humanity, who is divinely consecrated and set apart to noble office and high service, and whose whole life and being is filled with the Divine light necessary for doing the work of that office — the Anointed, consecrated One, in whom all consecration and Divine unction centres for the performance of all offices. And every one of these offices, observe, was in the service of mankind. The prophetic office was His, and He claims it as His own when He says, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, for He hath anointed Me" — what for? "to preach the gospel to the poor." The prophet's office was an office to serve mankind as their teacher, their guide, and their counsellor. The priestly office was His, and for what? That He might offer Himself as a Lamb without spot or blemish to God, and, having entered by a new and living way with His own blood, should live for intercession and sacrifice, coming forth with blessings for God's people. God made Him king over them, and gave Him heaven for an inheritance — for what? That He might rule them in righteousness and peace. Prophet, Priest, King: in each one of these He was the servant of mankind, and so He says of Himself, "The Son of Man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister." King of kings and Lord of lords He is, but Servant of servants to His brethren, and the lordship and the kingdom that He won was won by faith and suffering, won by faithful service, and He served that He might reign, and through it all He was sustained by the in. dwelling power of the Spirit of God, who gave not the Spirit by measure unto Him. This is the idea of the Christ, the consecrated One. It means One whose whole life on earth, whose whole life ever since He has left this earth, was devoted, is devoted, to the service of mankind.
(Bishop W. C. Magee.)
Parallel VersesKJV: For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
WEB: For there is born to you, this day, in the city of David, a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.