Summary: My Christmas Eve talk for our three Christingle services 2013. This talk uses a game of pass the parcel to explore God's love, sin and forgiveness and the coming of Christ in an all-age service context.
(Notes to the Reader - this is NOT an expository sermon. This is a talk given at a service with lots of visitors from our local community on Christmas Eve. My objective is to get them thinking about Jesus for their future lives ahead. I preached a similar sermon in 2006 but have developed this using gifts I found in the local £1 shop!)
Why did no one bid for Rudolph and Blitzen on eBay? Because they were two deer!
Knock knock! Who’s there? Mark! Mark who? Mark the Herald Angels sing!
What’s the most popular wine for Christmas day? “Oh, I really, really don’t like sprouts!”
How did Mary and Joseph know the weight of Jesus when he was born? Well, it’s because they had …wait for it …A weigh in a manger!
Tomorrow we celebrate Jesus’s birthday party here at 10 a.m. We often have party games on Christmas morning but I thought this year let’s play my favourite party game at Christingle. Pass the parcel!
1. Starburst sweets: In the beginning God made every star in the universe, bursting into existence; reminding us that He created life, that he created you and me. Like the orange in the Christingle; He made the Earth.
2. Heart-shaped stickers: Do you realise God loves you? Maybe you find it hard to love yourself. Maybe you feel you’re not worth much. That’s not how God sees you. He made you. He knows you. He loves you!
3. A broken ruler: If we’re honest we’ve all broken God’s rules. Sometimes in a small way, but sometimes we break his rules big time.
4. Blu Tack: Remember God loves us; but we say and do some things that are a bit ‘tacky’. Perhaps our speech is a bit ‘blue’ and so Blu Tack reminds us of some of the sticky situations we get ourselves into because of sin – because of our rejection of God.
5. Celebration bubbles: Christmas is a time to celebrate because God did something amazing about our rejection of him. God hasn’t rejected us forever. The birth of Jesus is worth celebrating!
6. A big pencil rubber that says, ‘For Big Mistakes’. The Angels said to the shepherds, (Luke 2:11) “Today, in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord!”
How does Jesus save us? Jesus saves us because he wipes away our wrongs. Jesus saves us from our sins, and one day he will also wipe away all of our tears. When it comes to our sin Jesus did not come to rub it in. No! Jesus came to rub it out; including the big mistakes! That is what I call Good News!
7. Three nails: God sent Jesus for a purpose. Jesus was God’s gift to the world and tonight we celebrate his birth. However, God did not give Jesus so we can eat too much food, drink too much wine and spend too much money in December every year! Really, it’s true! Christmas leads to Easter and the nails of the cross and the red ribbon on the Christingle; because God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in him will not perish but will have everlasting life (John 3:16).