Summary: the story of Christmas is that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory. The Word is the outward expression of God. The Baby in the manger was God made flesh.
The Christmas story is about Jesus. Now, I doubt that there is anyone here who really needed to be told that, but we all have to admit that it’s pretty difficult to keep the focus there.
Actually, I think there is a fine line between what’s pleasing and not pleasing in the way we celebrate. Christmas is one of the greatest opportunities we have all year to teach people, and especially our children, about God.
One thing that needs to be understood is just who this baby, wrapped in swaddling clothes and laid in manger really was. It’s not only easy to lose sight of that fact in the secular celebration, but even in the details surround the actual event.
Philippians 2:5 commands us to have the same kind of mindset that Jesus had. This is so important, because we follow our mind. Our mind, our words, and our faith are far more powerful than most Christians realize.
Verses 6-8 strip away all the material that Christmas plays are made out of, and simply tell us who Jesus was, and what He did.
I want to direct your attention to verse 6, where we are told that Jesus was in the “form” of God. That doesn’t mean that He was a replica of God, it means He was one and the same with God.
There are some other places, in the Bible, that I want you to turn: the first is Isaiah 7:14. At the end of that verse, you see the name, Immanuel. The literal meaning of that word is “God with us.” Now, in case you wonder, why did they call him Jesus instead of Immanuel, it is because when Isaiah said this, he was saying that those who came to really know the identity of this child would know that, in Him, God is with us.
Now, look at Isaiah 9:6, and look at the very end of the verse. Isaiah said, “He will be called the Mighty God.” Early in the Old Testament, it was spelled out that God is a jealous God, and those who worshipped God understood that you just didn’t call anybody, or anything, God, except God Himself. So, the Old Testament Prophet, Isaiah, 700 years before Jesus came, was announcing to the world that God was coming to dwell among us.
Turn to John 1:1-14. Verse 14 makes it pretty plain who this passage is referring to as, “The Word.” You don’t have to be Matthew Henry to figure out that the passage is talking about Jesus. The question that needs to be answered is, why does John call him, “The Word?” In the Greek it is, “Logos,” which means the outward expression of God. I understand that the water gets deep, real fast, when we start talking about such things as this. Verse one says He had a relationship with God, because He was with Him, yet at the same time, He was Him!
Our words are our most evident outward expression. What we say is extremely important. That’s why Romans 10:9-10 tell us that we must confess with our mouth, as we believe in our hearts.
Words have creative power. Everything God created, He created by His words. Hold you place in John, and turn back to Genesis, chapter one, and look at the following verses: 1,3,6,9,11,14,20,24,26. In each of these verses, God spoke things into existence.
We really need to listen to the way we talk. We need to make sure that our words are in agreement with God. That’s what biblical confession is, by the way. Too often, our words are in agreement with the enemy.
The sum total of what God does, He does by His word. By His word He sends the Holy Spirit, He creates, He heals, He delivers, He directs angels. That’s why Jesus said, in Jn.5:24, “He that hears my word and believes on Him that sent me, has everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation, but is passed from death unto life.”
There are many people who do not believe that Jesus is God. They say, “He was a good man, a great teacher, and a fine example, but He wasn’t God.” Actually, there are four possible viewpoints:
1) Jesus was a legend, just a made up story of someone who never really existed. He’s like Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. For any person, who truly wants to investigate, there is plenty of evidence that Jesus was a historical figure. Secular historians of His day wrote about Him. Jesus came into the world and divided history. Every time we acknowledge the date, we acknowledge that He is real.
2) Jesus was a lunatic, who thought He was God, but He really wasn’t. Again, if a person doesn’t want to accept the Bible, secular history tells enough about Him to know that people of His day really didn’t think He was crazy. As a matter of fact, folks thought He made more sense than anybody they’d ever heard.