Summary: This time of the year is one of great celebration. In our lesson we will discuss the reason and joy of the birth of Christ. We will note also, like the title suggest, that many sincere believers are: "Going home without Jesus."
1. Going Home with Jesus
2. Going Home without Jesus
3. Going Home with Jesus
1. Our lesson today is to discuss the theme: “Going home without Jesus.” Before noticing our theme, we will first consider that this couple would be going home with Jesus. Joseph and Mary would journey to Bethlehem to register for the purpose of taxes. Luke points out that: “Mary was great with child,” as they made their journey; some 80 miles from Nazareth, to their hometown – of Bethlehem. We will confine our lesson to the text taken from, Luke Chapter 2; and, Matthew Chapter 1. I would suggest to you, that there are many today: “Going home without Jesus.” It will be in this city, that the Saviour will be born. Many call this time of the year, the "Christmas season." We are not really sure, that this was the time that Christ was born. But, we are thankful that Christ is: "The reason for the season," and, for the joy of His birth; that continues to bless all mankind.
2. First we will discuss, going home with Jesus. The parents of the soon to be born child; were journeying to their home town, of Bethlehem. The mother was great with child. Bethlehem was the Prophetic city, where the Savior was to be born. Joseph and Mary sought for a place to lodge and prepare for the birth of her, “firstborn Son.” There were kin folk there; but they, could not seek lodging with them, in Mary’s condition. How do you explain her current condition – just recently becoming the wife of Joseph? She was going home to Bethlehem with (carrying) Jesus. They would find at their arrival, there was “no room in the inn.” God provided lodging for His Son’s birth in a stable – not a palace. He was wrapped in swaddling clothes – not a robe of silk and royalty. He lies in a manger – not in a bed of kings. The Son of God had no announcement of his birth from decree – but from a chorus of angel telling the shepherds nearby that a child was born – who is Christ the Lord – in Bethlehem.
3. Second we will discuss, going home without Jesus. We find the family of Jesus completing their annual visit to the city of Jerusalem during the Passover; going home without Him. They had traveled a full day’s Journey only to learn that Jesus was not with them. The family had left the child behind in Jerusalem. They were going home without Jesus. We cannot imagine the worry and fear that went through Mary’s heart. God had given the child to her for safe keeping – and now she has lost Him. Joseph no doubt remarked when Mary asked of the child’s whereabouts, “I thought he was with you.” Just like many fathers would today, Hu? They would return to Jerusalem and find Him in the temple – sitting in the midst of the teachers and leaders, both listening to them and asking them questions.
4. Finally, we will discuss again, going home with Jesus. The family took Jesus to the city of Nazareth; where he would be raised until the time of His manifestation and ministry to the world. Luke wrote: “Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them, but His mother kept all these things in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men,” Luke 2:51-52. In Luke’s account in Chapter 2; we find the conditions of Jesus birth and early childhood history. Not much is said regarding Him; but, that: “He increased in wisdom and stature; and in the favor with God and men.” With this brief introduction, let’s consider our first point – that is: “Going home with Jesus.”
BODY OF LESSON
I GOING HOME WITH JESUS
A. Caesar Augustus. Luke wrote: “And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that the entire world should be taxed. And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria. And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city,” Luke 2:1-2. Observe....
1. Joseph’s visit: “And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:),” Luke 2:3-4.
2. Mary’s visit: She accompanied Joseph on this journey; in order to fulfill the scripture: “For thus it is written by the prophet, and thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel,” Matthew 2:5-6; Micah 5:2; John 7:42.