Summary: Brief Christmas message given after our childrens Christmas program.
“A Savior Has Been Born to You.”
December 13, 2009
NOTE: THE ME/WE/GOD/YOU/WE FORMAT IS FROM ANDY STANLEY’S BOOK, "COMMUNICATING FOR A CHANGE."
My plan isn’t to speak very long today, because you didn’t come to hear me, you came to see what an awesome job our young people could do in presenting the Christmas story.
I want to just look at one little sentence in what you heard today – in fact, it’s just part of a sentence.
It’s what the angel said to the shepherds after Jesus had been born.
“A Savior has been born to you.”
It’s a short little phrase, but it is huge in what it means for you and me.
God: Why did the angel say, “a savior?” Why didn’t the angel just say, “a baby?”
“A savior” implies something, doesn’t it? It implies someone needs to be saved from something, right?
So what would that be? And who is it for?
Well, for us to really answer that question I need to give you just a little background.
That background includes the fact that the angel also says that “He is Christ the Lord.”
The word “Christ” isn’t Jesus’ last name, it’s His title. It’s the Greek form of the word, “Messiah.”
And the Messiah was the One who was going to come and save His people. But save them from what?
Well, let me just read two other short verses of Scripture to help us with that.
The first one is Romans 3:23, and it says:
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
The fact of the matter is that everyone has sinned. You, me, Billy Graham, Mother Teresa, and even your favorite grandma.
By “sin” I mean that you’ve either done something God says not to do in the Bible or you didn’t do something God says to do in the Bible.
You may not have sinned as “badly” as the next person, but the problem is that the standard isn’t the next person. The standard is God – and He’s perfect.
And because He’s perfect and we’re sinners, we fall short of His glory, and that has another implication, and that’s found a few chapters later in chapter 6 of Romans, in the last verse:
The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
The death this is talking about isn’t just physical death – it’s spiritual death, and it’s eternity paying for your sins.
Folks, that’s what each of us faces because of our sin. It’s what we deserve.
All of us who have had a job know what wages are. It’s what we deserve for the work we do, right?
And God help the boss if he doesn’t give us the wages we deserve.
Well, when we sin, this is what we deserve. An eternity paying the price for our sins in hell.
Now I know that none of you came here today to hear about hell. And to be frank with you, I’d rather not talk about it.
In fact, I’d rather talk about how to get to heaven.
And you know what? That’s what God would rather do, too.
He’d rather talk to you about how to get to heaven.
Unfortunately, in order to understand what heaven’s about, you have to understand the other option.
Now the first part of that verse is that the wages of sin is death. And then comes one of my favorite words in the entire Bible: but.
“But” is an incredibly important word, because it lets you know that a contrast is coming up.
The wages of sin is death, BUT –
The gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Here’s the scoop, folks. On our own we deserve hell for our sins, but Jesus came so that we can escape that penalty.
The reason Jesus came was to make it possible for anyone who wants it to be able to go to heaven.
Jesus came as a Savior - to save us from the penalty of our sins.
He didn’t just come as a good man, or a spiritual teacher, or a nice guru, or anything like that.
He came as the Savior.
And He said that if you want heaven, you have to go through Him. He said that He was the way, the truth, and the life, and that no one comes to the Father, except through Him.
He is the Savior.
So what do you do with that?
Accept the gift.
This verse I read says that the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus.
I talked about a wage a moment ago. It’s what we earn.
But eternal life and heaven is a gift. You can’t earn a gift. If you have to earn a gift, it’s not a gift, it’s what? A wage.