Summary: God releases His power through the love, humility, and servanthood demonstrated by sending Jesus into the world.
God’s Power Demonstration
Luke 2:1-7 & Phil. 2:3-8
1. Millions for defense and not a penny for tribute! I learned what that quote meant while in the Army. I was assigned, as were all junior officers In the 82d Airborne Division, to escort generals and colonels from the parking lot to a set of bleachers located in a remote area of Fort Bragg. That day, I would witness a firepower demonstration of the latest bombs and weaponry invented to search for and destroy the enemy.
For two hours, I witnessed nearly a million dollars blown to bits by a fireworks display designed to kill hundreds with jet planes dropping bombs with pinpoint accuracy. Just as an announcer read from a script that jet planes at the 12 o’clock position would be overhead, jets appeared over the horizon in perfect synchronization with the announcer’s words.
Bomber jets, surface to air missiles, hand held weapons, tanks—all the latest military hardware showed how death and destruction could be unharnessed in seconds. In one pass, across a field that was about a mile from the bleachers, jets dropped canisters of a jelly-like substance called napalm. As soon as the napalm splattered over the ground, it burst into flames. Acres of ground caught fire and burned to a crisp. Anyone on the ground would have been burned alive.
That’s how the world spells power—weapons of mass destruction that can kill and maim hundreds and even thousands at a time.
2. This Christmas, like every Christmas since WWII, the nations of the world are held together by mutual fear that an atomic or chemical holocaust could destroy us and the earth. No matter how technologically advanced and educated man has become, he still solves his problems with death and destruction. Peace on earth is still a wishful thought.
3. How different was the power demonstration God displayed on
the first Christmas.
A. Christmas demonstrates that God’s power is found in love.
1. People in Jesus day were no different than people today in their understanding of what real power is.
2. Even God’s chosen people believed the Messiah would seize political power and throw off the tyrannical oppression of the Roman Empire that ruled Israel.
3. Ironic isn’t it, that God would send Jesus, the long awaited Savior, whose words of power included: Love your enemies; Do good to those who persecute you; overcome evil with good; Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
4. Those words were not the ruthless words of a Hitler or a Stalin, for God chose to exercise His power through a force greater and more powerful than the armies of the earth.
5. He chose to exercise His love in Jesus Christ, the body-form of God Himself—the incarnate God.
6. God is love—You believe that don’t you? Why aren’t all people filled with love for one another, rather than distrust, jealousy, fear, and resentment? The answer is simple, isn’t it? Man is a fallen sinner from God, the source of real love and compassion.
7. The song says, "What the world needs now is love sweet love" is true. Look at the results of a lack of love: people who commit all kinds of heinous, compulsive acts, looking for love in all the wrong places and all the ways.
8. For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. Those who come to know Christ come to know the power of love as they repent of their distrust, jealousy, fear, and resentment.
9. But God demonstrates His won love for us in this: While we were yet sinners Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).
10. Do you feel loved? Or have you been the brunt of an unloving person’s criticism and rejection? If so, you should know that God loves you unconditionally. If you’ve been unloved by others, you’re hurting as you sit here today. The question you must answer is this: Will you become bitter towards these people, or will you call on God’s love to help you love those who look like your enemy? The Bible tells us that God releases into our hearts the power of His love through the Holy Spirit, which dwells within every Christian. Your potential to love the unlovely depends on how obedient you’re being to the will of God. Is your focus on His love or your hurt? Faith works by love. Where there is weak faith, there is weak love.
11. A mother asked a little girl if there was anything that the little girl could do to cause her mother not to love her. The little girl was so sure of her mother’s love, she emphatically replied, “Nothing.” That’s how sure you can be of God’s love.