Summary: This message looks at the incredible love Jesus showed to us by leaving heaven to come to earth to die in our place.

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AM Sermon preached at Central Christian Church December 2, 2012

Take the Christmas Journey Sermon Series

Message #1 Jesus: He came from infinity and beyond!

Philippians 2:5-8, John 1:1-14

Okay, it may sound kind of weird and out of place for a guy just over fifty to say it, but there are times I wish had the stuffed Snoopy dog I had when I was a kid. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t wish I had him today for the same reasons he became my favorite childhood toy back then. No, when these days I occasionally wish I had that old stuffed dog it’s for entirely different reasons. Back when I was a kid and I had some bedtime fears about monsters living under my bed, ghosts living in my closet or that the shadows on my wall were being cast by the Boogie Man, I rested a lot easier with Snoopy lying next to me---for just as I imagined the monsters were out to get me, I imagined Snoopy would defend me from harm. Even in thunderstorms I found comfort with him by my side. When I went out, Snoopy went with me. Sometimes he was right in the middle of my play, other times he was merely a witness to it acting as my own private cheering section. He sat with me when I watched TV. I told him my secrets, my jokes, my fears. I hugged him, kissed him, dressed him up, sneezed and coughed on him. I loved him to pieces, if you know what I mean.

Now I know some of you can relate. How about we take a quick poll? Raise your hand if you had a childhood toy that you loved on like that. How about a few of you call out the name or the type of toy that meant so much to you... Okay, now let me tell you two reasons why I wish I had that old dog now---I’m not wishing I had him to tell my secrets to or to have him protect me from bedtime monsters---I mean after all I’ve got Lori for that---seriously one reason I wish I had that old dog now is because I think it would act as a physical link to my past memories, memories that I find as I get older have been fading, and yet they are memories I don’t want to forget. Another reason I wish I had that old dog, especially today, is because he would illustrate perfectly a point I had driven home to me as I was preparing for this morning’s message. A point I want to share with you---the point was this---it is the nature of someone’s love for a thing that makes it valuable. You see if I still had that old dog and I brought him up here on the stage with me and I projected a picture of him on the screen---you’d look at him and think that dog’s ready for the trash. You’d see how his once white fur was now a dingy grey brown spotted here and there with unidentifiable stains. You’d see how his stuffings were leaking out of a couple of tears. You might notice how one of his ears was barely attached. You might notice the glue spot on his nose where there had once been a bumblebee. To you he’d appear to have no value. You’d never bid on him at an auction, never pick him up at a yard sale. You wouldn’t give a dime to own him. But never mind that because if it really was my old Snoopy dog, I wouldn’t put in an auction or a yard sale. In fact it would be very hard to get me to even consider selling him, and you can bet if I did agree to sell him, I’d ask a pretty hefty price. I really don’t know what happened to that old Snoopy dog. I’m guessing he eventually went the way of most old worn out toys.

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