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b. He is after you, your children, your grandchildren & everyone you love.
c. Only two ways of attack
i. Might-this is what happened in the first Gulf War. General Colin Powell described the plan this way. First we will cut them off, and then we will kill ‘em. “Shock and awe” has been used to describe this kind of plan. It is the full on assault to beat us down by life’s circumstances. But Satan rarely works this way.
ii. Deception-this is the number one tool of the devil. Eve told God in Eden, “the serpent deceived me.” ( Genesis 3:13) And Satan has been sneaking around ever since. Jesus told us in John 8:8, “When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”
2. Beware the power of human traditions
a. George Barna states, “My research has shown that people – especially young people – absorb an amazing degree of their values, beliefs and lifestyle practices from the media content to which they are exposed. Most of that media is based on worldviews that do not honor God.” (George Barna, July 10, 2006)
b. Galatians 4:3, “So also, when we were children, we were in slavery under the basic principles of this world.”
c. Human traditions center upon these basic things:
i. Our happiness
ii. Our gain
iii. Our comfort
d. Godly traditions center upon these basic things:
i. Connection with our Creator
ii. Connection with God’s people
iii. Testimony to those without hope
e. It is imperative that the observance of Christmas in our homes be centered primarily on the birth of Christ. How can we do this?
i. Don’t crave to fit in-- Galatians 6:14, “May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”—A majority of the activity during this time of year is clearly the antithesis of what Jesus taught. We are to be uncomfortable in the pattern of the world. It shouldn’t fit us so well.
ii. De-emphasize gift giving—it is Jesus birthday, but we get all the presents! When you do give gifts, explain the value of the gifts Jesus received from the Magi. The gifts they gave financed the escape of Jesus and his family to Egypt.
iii. Tell and re-tell the story through the Gospel narratives and prophecies that foretold the birth.
iv. Bring music back into the home. Is church the only place we should sing about Jesus’ birth? Play CDs and if you can play an instrument, sing.
v. Send Christmas greeting cards that point to Jesus. I don’t even read cards that say “Happy Holidays”. I shake the money out of them and then throw them away.
3. We don’t resist only for our own
a. John 1:9-11, “The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.”
b. Just as the Jews didn’t receive Jesus in their day, many Christians ignore Jesus today. Their witness to the saving, transforming power of God in their life has become anemic at best and impotent through hypocrisy at its worst.
c. A rather pompous-looking deacon was endeavoring to impress upon a class of boys the importance of living the Christian life. "Why do people call me a Christian?" the man asked.
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