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Summary: Did you know that you can purchase a "genuine" college degree online with no validation other than a credit card? Buddha and Muhammad had no prophetic validation. What about Jesus was He genuine of did he purchase a fake Messiah degree? Let's find out!

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About 500 before Jesus was born - a man named Buddha came along. He established a religion we know of as Buddhism, and many people gathered around him and tried to live by his teachings. But before he was born, nobody ever said:

“Hey somebody is going to come along and he will come from this or that family. These are going to be his credentials. And this is how you’ll know he is who he said he was.”

Mohammed was born about 500 years after Christ. He established a religion we now call Islam and many people gathered around him and tried to live by his teachings. But before he was born, nobody ever said:

“Hey somebody is going to come along and he will come from this or that family. These are going to be his credentials. And this is how you’ll know he is who he said he was.”

BUT, when Jesus came… He didn’t just pop up in history and say “Hey, I have a great idea!” Oh no. Long before Jesus was ever born, God put His stamp of approval on Him, so that we can know that all of the Old Testament looked forward to the birth of this one little boy in Bethlehem.

And because of that one Child’s birth – miracles of salvation have taken place in the lives of millions of men and women.

Already we have seen prophecies that stated -

- The offspring of Eve, many generations removed, would one day rise up

to crush the head of the evil one who had deceived Eve and caused

Adam to sin. - Genesis 3

- That the stone cut out of the mountain not by human hands in the dream

of Nebuchadnezzar was a reference to the virgin birth of Jesus - Daniel 2

- That Jesus would be born in Bethlehem - Micah 5:2

Buddha and Muhammad came into the world unannounced - no prophecies, no validating signs and wonders, no miracles, just their own word, or, in Muhammad’s case he chatted it up with an angel in a cave somewhere.

Did you know that you can buy a high school diploma or a college or university degree on the internet from Buyrealdegree.com (show PPT image of cat with a GED and dog with an MBA)

No studying. No examinations. No classes. No waiting.

Here’s what buyrealgegree.com says on their website …

The degrees available through us are obtained through the exploitation of legal loopholes, but legally that does not make them of any less worth than a "worked for" degree.

Really???

Oh, by the way, you can also get a transcript telling what courses you took and what grades you got in those courses … for an extra fee, of course …

And … you can also get high honors grades … for an extra fee, of course …

Can you believe that anyone would ever fall for a scam like that???

In 2003 the Government Accounting Office ran a check of eight federal agencies. The investigation uncovered 463 employees who claimed online degrees from fake schools aka diploma mills. At least 28 of those caught in the sting were senior-level employees, including three unnamed managers with security clearances working at the National Nuclear Security Administration.

Is that crazy or what???

In order to graduate from high school or get a college degree a person needs to study.

They need to study the subject material that pertains to their intended degree.

They need to study the subject material from certified textbooks.

They need instructors who have mastered the material.

They need instructors who are capable of teaching the material.

They need instructors who can then certify that the material has been mastered by the student.

Then you get the diploma or degree.

People often get false credentials. There’s an entire black market industry of forgery. What does this have to do with Advent?

Advent is waiting for the time when we remember or try to remember what it must have been like when Israel waited for the Messiah to come over 2,000 years ago.

Here’s the amazing thing! Even though the nation had been looking and longing for their Messiah for centuries many had stopped looking!

Some were looking. Some had stopped. Some were doubting. God was still sending messages!

God was still validating that Jesus was indeed the Chosen One of Israel, the Christ, the Messiah, the Son of God.

So, was Jesus the true Messiah, validated by the fulfillment of prophecies or was He just pretending like these people who buy fake diplomas for themselves?

Was the birth of Jesus validated by prophecies?

On the first Sunday of Advent we covered at least two OT prophecies about how Jesus would be born of a virgin - this one is taken by faith as it is unverifiable - and the people of Mary’s home town, Nazareth probably weren’t buying it …

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