The Best Present

Every Christmas we read the Christmas story as told by Luke.  This year is no exception.

Luke 2:1-20

And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.

Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child. So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. 10 Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. 11 For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”

13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

14 “Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

15 So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger. 17 Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the saying which was told them concerning this Child. 18 And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.

Christmas is a wonderful time of year.  It seems as though most of humanity is willing to accept, for a time, the peace and good will that God offers to us in Christ.  Of course, the world spins the good news of Christmas into something else.  The focus goes from the birth of the Christ, to a man magically distributing presents.  Or, to a focus on love, family and friends; which certainly is better, but if Christ is excluded, the main point is missed.

This year my message is going to focus on a different portion of scripture.

I.  In The Beginning:  John 1:1-5

 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

In Him was life.  In Christ we find, not just eternal life, but abundant life.  Life as it is meant to be.  As Christians we have purpose, hope, strength, love, peace, joy and much more.

I very much enjoy the lights at Christmas.  Our family will normally go for a ride around town to look at all the light displays as least once during the season.  Jesus is the true light of the world.  The light of His love shines in the darkness.  His love reaches out to us in many ways.  It truly is peace, good will to men.

Unfortunately, the darkness does not comprehend it.  There are many people who reject the love of God.  They do not understand.  They do not appreciate.  They are unwilling to receive the love that God has for them.

II.  Word Became Flesh:  John 1:14-18

And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

15 John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me.’”

16 And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.

The Word, which is God, became flesh.  The birth of Christ was a truly remarkable time in history.

Grace and truth are personified in Christ.  The grace of God offers to us riches that we did not earn, nor do we deserve.  Jesus is the Truth. Our world today is especially lost, as many question whether there even is such a thing as truth.  Yet Christians have a firm foundation.  The truth is found in Christ.

Christ is the declaration of God.  In Christ the Father is revealed.  In Christ we find who we were meant to be.  We have an opportunity to receive of His fullness.  We do not fully understand or appreciate what that truly means.

Jesus Christ is truly the best present the world has ever received.

These are the sermon notes from 12/25/15.  All scripture quotes are from the New King James Version of the Bible.  Any advertisements that might appear are placed by WordPress.  I have no control over them, nor do I receive any money from them. 

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