Summary: A sermon that looks at why christmas eve is a night to remember.
A night to remember.
A movie made on the tragic loss of the White star liner was called – A night to remember.
A later version of the Story was called Titanic.
Do you know – when I thought of it – many great movies are about something negative.
Even King Kong is about the tragic death and misguided affection of a giant Gorrilla.
But the ultimate blockbuster story is contained in a few short verses in the bible in the accounts of the birth of Jesus Christ.
Certainly for the parrticipants in the account – Mary Joseph –the shepherds – Wisemen and the assorted cast of characters in this great historic drama – This was a night to remember.
But what is it for subsequent generations that makes this night so memorable and in many ways so contoversial.
I think if we are honest the significance of most human events are measured by the answer to the question – What’s in it for me?
You might read in the paper – Texan oil baron dies.
That becomes of little interest until you receive a letter in the mail that tells you that you have received ifrom his estate one of the oil wells.
That is actually reputed to happen to a friend of mine and for years that well kept pumping oil.
2000 years ago something happenned in an obscure village in the Middle East.
Let us read something of how it has been recorded by Luke an Astute historian.
LK 2:8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
LK 2:13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
LK 2:14 "Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."
LK 2:15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about."
LK 2:16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
How then can the 21st century person personalise this great act.
We live in a world that is often dominated by two major delusions.
Humanism – that is people being their own God.
Dubious Spirituality where anything or anyone can be God – except the one that has prooved to be God.
If we were determined to be dominated by one or both of these major infuluences there is little to be done for us.
COL 2:18 Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you for the prize. Such a person goes into great detail about what he has seen, and his unspiritual mind puffs him up with idle notions. 19 He has lost connection with the Head, from whom the whole body, supported and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows as God causes it to grow.
But of course Christmas flies in the face of all this –
What we read in Luke is Jesus is a sign:
Luke chapter 2 10 But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
Verse 12 says this will be a sign for you.
You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
The Shepherds went and found Jesus lying in a manger.
What is Jesus a sign for.