Summary: Something remarkable happened in the birth of Christ - God became flesh and dwelt among us! Jesus reveals the heart and mind of God to mankind. He is the light that has come into the world. How will you respond to the light?
Knowing Him – The Word Dwelling Among Us – John 1:1-18 – December 25, 2011
Series: What’s Jesus Got To Do With Christmas? #3
Rev. Kevin Haley tells a story of a memorable event that happened to him one December day. He says, “When my son was just 5 years old, he and I were standing in line at a card store during the Christmas season. He noticed on the counter a small statue for sale, depicting Santa kneeling at the manger of baby Jesus. Curiously he asked me, "Daddy, did that really happen?"
Knowing it had not happened but not wanting to blow any Santa legend, I simply replied, "No, it did not." Satisfied with my answer, he stepped over to be with his mother, while I remained in line with the card I was going to purchase. The woman standing in front of me in line turned around and snapped, "How dare you, sir?"
I said, "How dare I what, ma’am?" She said, "How dare you tell your little boy that didn’t happen?" I pointed to the statue and said, "This? Well, it didn’t happen." She insisted, "Oh yes it did! It’s in the Bible. You really ought to read it!"
Chuckling to myself, I told her that I did indeed read the Bible and in fact was a Christian minister. She slammed her cards down on the counter without buying them and stormed out of the store. I apologized to the clerk if I had cost her a sale, but she couldn’t stop laughing, saying, "I can’t believe she actually thought that really happened! I guess some people don’t know the truth about Christmas." (Rev. Kevin Haley, Illustrations, www.sermoncentral.com)
And it’s true – there are many people who do not know the truth about Christmas which is why our Christmas series this year has been entitled, “What’s Jesus Got To Do With Christmas?” That’s the question we’ve been answering for the last couple of weeks and we’ve discovered that, first of all, Jesus is living proof of God’s love for us, secondly that in Jesus we’re given an example of how we are to love one another, and then this morning we are going to discover that Jesus is the pendulum, pivot point, fulcrum of your life and mine.
So let’s open our Bibles this morning to the Gospel of John. John, chapter 1, and we’ll begin reading in verse 1 …
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ ”) Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.” (John 1:1–18, NIV)
Years ago a sign was seen hanging in a store window during the Christmas season. It captures the heart felt sentiments of many people even today. The original message stated, “Let’s make this the best Christmas ever.” And who among us has not thought the same thing at one time or another? But underneath the original wording, some perceptive person had scribbled a legitimate question: “How will we top the first one?” (Davon Huss, Illustrations, www.sermoncentral.com, Adapted)