Sermons

Summary: Where does the peace that you experience around Christmas come from? Does it have its origin from the Prince of Peace? Or the prince of this world?

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Christmas is here again

stand up and cheer again

Let’s leave our heartaches and shadows behind

All that I want, is to be here beside you

All that I need, is right here in my arms

All that I want, is to know that you love me

And this will be my finest Christmas time

Holly and mistletoe, small faces all aglow

Stockings for Santa to fill it with toys

Santa and Christmas trees, small people on their knees...

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Don’t you hate it when people piggyback on a gift that you are giving someone?

"Hey, that sounds like a great gift! Let me give you some money, and then it can be from both of us."

Come to think of it - isn’t that exactly what satan has done? Is still doing?

God had prepared this wonderful gift, which the angel of the Lord came to proclaim. Luk 2:10 "Fear not, for behold, I bring you GOOD news of a GREAT JOY that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger." And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom He is pleased!"

Not even the evil spirits can deny that Jesus’ coming is a gift from God’s heart to his children, God with us. And you know what? They don’t.

When they saw that this was a gift that the Father was planning, the best plan they could come up with, was to piggyback on this gift.

And they REALLY got in on the act! They decided to make a great big party of this, having everyone, the whole world, join in with the celebrations of this wondrous birthday - the birthday of the very Son of God - Immanuel - God among the people! Jesus came from God to the people in whom God was well pleased. A wonderful day, dusting it all with warmth and fuzziness - and empty sentiment.

I really HATE what the satan had done with everything that God planned and created down to the finest detail. Satan comes and distorts everything that God is trying to accomplish. The devil exposes himself as destructive and evil to the core by taking the very name of Jesus and turning it into a blasphemous interjection, having God’s own children reel back at the sound of his Name! How vile and hurtful is that?!

Do you remember what it felt like when you were small, and you were peacefully constructing a sand castle and someone - just for the sheer malicious fun of it - would come and kick it in?

On that holy night, the devils were carefully listening to what the angels came to tell the shepherds. This Child is to be the Saviour, the One who is to address the sin of the world. But they realised that this task of addressing the sin of the world wasn’t merely a docile act - it was in opposition with the very goal of satan himself, threatening to wipe out all that the kingdom of darkness had achieved! Jesus came to really DEAL with sin. No "leaving our heartache and shadows behind", simply to pick them up again after the holidays. He would take it on Himself.

Jesus’ birth was a real, undeniable threat. I think the devils were quaking when John the Baptist, seeing Jesus, said to his followers "Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!" Joh 1:29.

God is all-powerful and omnipotent, but He still allows people to choose for themselves. God wants a personal relationship with every person on this planet, and for them to choose to have that relationship with Him. He does not force us into it. That is how He had planned it from before He had created earth.

But the evil spirits are everywhere, trying to taint and corrupt everything that God created perfectly in this world. Satan wants to interfere with the masterplan that was laid out before the foundation of the world, to change the outcome of that plan. He is doing everything in his power to accomplish that.

He is there when we are having fun, to plague us with temptation, or with feelings of guilt, he is there when we are being charitable, patting us on the shoulder so that we may harbour feelings of pride.

He is the weed among the wheat, the moth that spoils the flour, the rust that blunts the sword. He spoils everything that we allow him to spoil.

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