Summary: Christmas is about discovering Gods promises are fulfilled
Let Us Go to Bethlehem and Find the Promise of Christmas
Christmas has different meanings for different people.
All of us have something to celebrate, such as family events, the joy of giving and receiving, and the beautiful memories we carry in our hearts and minds.
In reality, the Christmas season is sometimes a drain—a month of shopping, shuffling through crowded malls, decorating, and family gatherings.
Sadly for others, the Christmas season dredges up painful memories of lost loved ones, or dreams deferred.
Amid both the commotion and the emotion, it’s easy for anyone, even the most devoted Christian, to lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas.
Christmas is about experiencing God’s fullness in his promises.
A secular Christmas is hollow and therefore brings no lasting joy
Christmas, for many, "brings a sense of isolation, desperation or increased domestic distress".
It is one of the ironies of our times that traditional celebrations produce the inverse. When joy is expected we get depression, when celebration abounds we get an empty void.
When we look to Bethlehem we can see Gods great promises being fulfilled
18 This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. 20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"-which means, "God with us." 24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25 But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.
Christmas is a time to celebrate the keeping of God’s greatest promise
His Son, Emmanuel: God with us. Which brings us Peace between man and God
Illustration: An atheist professor stood before his class and said, "If anyone can tell me where God is, I will give that person a hundred dollars." One student said, "Sir, I will give you a hundred dollars if you can tell me where God is not."
Why is this so important?
Love Came Down - A Christmas Parable
A man is climbing a mountain, at the top of which he hopes to find God. By ascending the heights, the seeker expects to leave all the cares and miseries of life behind in the valley. But while he climbs, God is coming down the mountain into the toil and grief. In the mists of the mountain God and the man pass one another.
Love came down at Christmas, but only a few perceived its coming.
1. Christmas Promises: his Presence
Letting Jesus take our hand and lead us along our journey.
John 1:14 “The Word became flesh and lived for a while 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.”
Christmas is about a God who loves us so much that he becomes one of us, he is born among us, looks like us, feels like us, lives and dies like us.
Jesus birth marks the entrance into a dark world, one who is the true source of life.
2. Christmas Promises: The fulfillment of Jesus Purpose
A. To restore our relationship with God
Jesus was born to fulfill God’s plan for man. His life, his teachings, his ministry, his death, resurrection, and ascension did not just happen.
B. To build quality of life, and empower our lives
Isaiah 61:1-2 describes the ministry of the coming Messiah. The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn.
3. Christmas Promise’s Jesus’ Peace