What A Person Gets Out of the Birth of Christ!
I. Introduction -
A. For most Dept Stores, and Shopping Centres, Christmas offers the best time of the year to make money - some stores make 50% of their sales for the year in just 3 - 4 weeks!
B. But what does Christmas offer the rest of us? What do WE get out of this time of the year? Headaches, stomachaches, heartburn, bills
C. That’s not what Christmas offers - that is what people have made of Christmas! Let’s see what Christmas offered a young couple back almost 2,000 years ago, and see if the offers are still true!!!
II. Message - What Christmas Offers Us (Matthew 1:18-25)
A. Christmas Offers Us Some Obstacles (1:18-19)
1. To the mind - It exceeds understanding
a. Joseph is enganged to Mary - committed to one another - just waiting for the day of their marriage
b. Mary announces that she is pregnant - by the Holy Ghost
c. Joseph can’t believe it - just not possible! Jospeh knew his Bible, but just didn’t believe it - standard!!!
1) Not being able to understand everything going on in life
2) Not being in control of all the situations around you - his sweet Mary had “stepped-out” on him!
But you and I (outside of the situation) know better!
2. To the heart - It exceeds emotions
a. Joseph’s heart has been broken - his wife-to-be had been unfaithful even before they got married!
b. He loves her so much that he seeks no revenge
c. He determines to just put her away and privately take care of her for the rest of her life - protect her from the shame!
d. The events of his life had defeated him - overwhelmed him
e. He could only just pick up the pieces and go on
Now, to a lot of people, THAT is Christmas - a big mess, that they wish was all over!
Once you get past the obstacles, there are quite a few surprises ahead!
B. Christmas Offers Us Some Surprises (1:18-23)
1. The surprise that this is not a normal birth that we are talking about here (children are conceived and born every day) - but a virgin birth (1:18-20) Just like Joseph, Mary was just as surprised in Luke 1! Christmas is founded upon the miraculous birth of a baby to a virgin! Not some test-tube baby - but a real MIRACLE!
a. To be ALL God, Jesus had to have no earthly father!
b. To be ALL man, Jesus had to have an earthly mother
c. That makes for the only virgin birth in history!
2. The surprise that is this not a normal child (over 5 billion children in the world today) - this boy is Immanuel (1:22,23)
Not just a child, a boy child, promised boy child (Isaac, Samuel, John the Baptist), the Son of God, but God, in the form of a Son! God with us (2 Tim 3:16)
What a surprise for Joseph to be able to hold in your hands the very Creator of this universe? What a surprise for a filthy sinner to be able to hold the very same Creator in my heart (2 Cor 13:5)?
The surprise that is this not a normal religion here - but Salvation
(1:21)! The world keeps filling up with “religions”. 2,000 years ago, it
already had loads of them - didn’t need any more! Religion had had its
chance, and failed - time for God to step in and take care of the real issues
of the heart - our sin!!! (John 1:29; 1 Tim 1:15)! We didn’t need another
religious leader - we sinners needed a SAVIOUR! Is
He YOUR Saviour?!
The surprise that this is not a normal Book - But God’s
word indeed! Christmas shows us that you really can trust the word of God
to come true - every time! About heaven, hell, getting saved! Do
you trust it?
C. Christmas Offers Us Some Opportunities (1:20-25)
1. The opportunity to sit back and ponder things that really matter (1:19,20) - take time to evaluate just what is important - Joseph had to weigh all the “options!” People don’t ponder (stop and think) when trouble comes - they just “react” and cause more troubles! turn off the tv, radio - Get some quiet time, and ponder:
a. Am I trusting the Lord, or my heart/mind here?
b. Is God trying to tell me somthing?
c. What am “I” doing wrong? - how can I do better?
2. The opportunity to allow the Lord to speak to your heart - If you will listen! If you ask questions, expect an answer! God speaks in a “still (quiet) small voice” though, that must be sought in the pages of this Book in quiet! Take the time to listen to it!
3. The opportunity to be saved yourself! To trust the Lord yourself! Yes Jesus came for “others,” but He came for YOU!
a. Joseph needed that baby just as the heathen out in Africa!
b. Mary needed that baby just as you and I do (Luke 1:46,47)
4. The opportunity to serve God - find His will, and then do it (Mt 1:24,25)! Joseph learns what the Lord wants, and then gets up, and follows His orders! Proud to do it too! He trusts the Lord! Joseph was serious about following the Lord - Are you?
5. The opportunity to worship Jesus Christ - live with Him, and walk with Him! Joseph had the choice of really believing that the little boy named Jesus WAS indeed IMMANUEL, and enjoying every minute of every day with Him, or just treat Him like dirt!
III. Conclusion - What Christmas Offers Us
A. Christmas Offers Us Some Obstacles - Don’t let them stop you
1. To the mind - You may not be able to understand it all, but you should be able to appreciate it!
2. To the heart - Your heart may be all worn out from “religion” and family troubles - don’t let that keep you from Jesus Christ!
B. Christmas Offers Us Some Surprises
1. The surprise that this is not a normal birth that we are talking about here - but a virgin birth - He wouldn’t be God otherwise!
2. The surprise that is this not a normal child - this boy is Immanuel God with us! He wouldn’t be able to save you any other way - than coming like you, to take your place on the cross!
3. The surprise that is this not a normal religion here- but Salvation! We didn’t need another religious leader - we needed a SAVIOUR!
4. The surprise that this is not a normal Book - But God’s word indeed! You really can trust the word of God to come true - every time! About heaven, hell, getting saved! Do you trust it?
C. Christmas Offers Us Some Opportunities Don’t let them pass!
1. This Christmas, sit back and ponder things that really matter
2. This Christmas, allow the Lord to speak to your heart
3. This Christmas, be saved yourself! Trust the Lord yourself!
4. This Christmas, serve God - find His will, and then do it! Get serious about following the Lord - Are you?
5. This Christmas, worship Jesus Christ (not the gifts, or the tree, or the Santa, but the Lord Jesus!) - live with Him, and walk with Him! Enjoy every minute of every day with Him!