Summary: We have been given the gift of Jesus.
November 30, 2008 Morning Service
Immanuel Baptist Church, Wagoner, OK
Focus Passage: Luke 1:26-38
Introduction: I have a problem with Christmas. I think I have it under control, but only time will tell. It’s those Christmas Boxes that cause me to stumble. You know the ones I’m talking about. Those elaborately decorated treasure chests that are hidden under the tree. I’m not picky either. I have a problem with the large boxes and the small ones. Square and rectangle, it really doesn’t matter. The problem … I want to know what is inside! Especially the ones that are addressed to me. Maybe you have that problem too! We pick it up. Shake it a little. Not too much though, it might be fragile. We give it a little squeeze. We just have to know. Hold it up to the light, but only when no one is looking. I wonder if the wrapping paper is loose. My problem does not end there. I have it bad. When
I give a gift, I have to rub it in. You know, the fact that I know what they are getting and they don’t. Sometimes I even catch myself saying, “I know something you don’t know.” Just a little tease. Maybe even a hint or two. Just enough to make Christmas interesting.
The angel Gabriel had a similar problem. He was given the responsibility of describing God’s gift to the world. He was called to announce the birth of Jesus to Mary. The virgin Mary. Talk about making Christmas interesting. Listen to their conversation.
I. The First Box – The Manger
a. When Gabriel told Mary that Jesus “will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:32). He was describing the contents of the first Christmas Box. That box was the manger.
II. The Second Box – The Gifts of the Magi
a. Instead of it being a gift about the Savior, it was a gift to the Savior. Inside were the gifts of the Magi. Those gifts of gold, incense, and myrrh.
b. Gold is the gift for a king. Jesus was born to be the King of Kings. He was to reign, not by force, but by love.
c. Incense is the gift for a priest. It was used in the Temple when sacrifices were offered to God. Jesus was the Chief Priest. He opened the way to God for all men.
d. Myrrh is the gift for one who is to die. It was used to embalm the Savior (John 19:39). Even from birth, Jesus was born to die.
III. The Third Box – The Garden Tomb
a. The Magi who came to worship the Christ child, remind us that there is a third Christmas Box. It is the primary Christmas gift. The best gift of all. The Garden Tomb. It is more precious than gold, sweeter than incense, more powerful than myrrh. The Garden Tomb is meaningful, not because of what it was, but because of what it represents. The Garden Tomb was borrowed. It was plain. It was cold. But, it was at the spot that history changed. Satan was defeated. Sin was paid for. True life was born. Christmas and Calvary go together. We can’t have one without the other.
Invitation: We have been given the gift. Now it is time to open our hearts to receive that gift!