Summary: describes how special the Christ child was, how He is the sacrificial lamb of God and the saving lamb of God
MARY HAD A LITTLE LAMB
by Rev. Timothy G. Porter
Matt. 1:18-25 (NKJV)
In our childhoods, most of us learned the little song entitled, "Mary Had A Little Lamb." It went something like this,
"Mary had a little lamb.
Its fleece was white as snow.
And everywhere that Mary went.
That lamb was sure to go."
There's more to the story, but those few lines are enough to remind us of that little childhood song. As we sang that song while we were children, we had no idea that something like that had actually happened. It never dawned on our childish minds that the Bible told the same story. That a young girl named Mary did indeed have a little lamb.
** STAND ** READ **PRAY **
Well, that's what is happening in these verses in Matthew's Gospel. It seems that Joseph is engaged to a young Jewish girl named Mary. They were betrothed, which means that they were engaged, legally married, but were not yet living together. During this time, word comes to Joseph that Mary is pregnant. Joseph knows that he isn't the father, but he is sure someone is! He believes that Mary has been unfaithful to him and he decides to get a divorce, (vs.18-19). Yet, because he loves Mary, he wants to do this thing quietly because the penalty for committing Mary's crime was death by stoning. However, before he can put his plan into action, God sends an angel to tell Joseph that things aren't at all like he thinks they are. He tells this Joseph that Mary is carrying a child that was miraculously fathered by the Holy Spirit of God. He is told that this child will be a special child with a special mission and a special name. That, in fact, this child is to be the Savior of the world.
Joseph's reaction is to take Mary into his home and wait with her until the day the baby is born. What they didn't realize is that this baby Who was growing in Mary's body was none other than the Lamb of God who would one day die for the sins of all men. (Verse 25) tells us that Mary eventually delivered this child. When she did, the Lamb of God was born. In one of the greatest stories in all of the Bible, we learn the truth that Mary Had A Little Lamb. It is that Lamb, the Lord Jesus that I would like to speak about today. I would like to share three characteristics of Mary's little Lamb with you today. May the Lord help us to see why Jesus, and His birth, are so special.
I.) MARY'S LAMB WAS A SPECIAL LAMB (vs.20)
A.) His Conception Was Special -
Jesus had no human father! His Father was God Himself! What makes the conception of the Lord Jesus so fantastic is the fact that He was born to a virgin! Now. We all know the traditional method by which babies are conceived and brought into this world. However, the conception of Jesus was different! His mother was a virgin, Isa. 7:14; Matt. 1:23; Luke 1:34-35.
This is an essential doctrine! Without a virgin birth, we do not have a sinless Savior and we have no hope of salvation. It is impossible to be saved and deny the truth of the virgin birth of the Lord Jesus Christ!
B.) His Conduct Was Special -
From the day Jesus came into this world until the day He ascended back into Heaven, He was a Person of very special characteristics.
1. Miracles - He could feed multitudes, open blinded eyes, heal the sick and even raise the dead. Walking on water posed no problem for the Lord Jesus, neither did stilling a violent storm. Everything He did marked Him as being special. However, these activities were merely proof that He was indeed Who He claimed to be, Luke 4:18, Isa. 61:1.
2. Messages - When Jesus opened His mouth, people marveled at the things He said. Even when He was only 12, the doctors of the Law were astonished at Him, Luke 2:47. When He began His ministry, He continued to amaze the crowds that heard Him speak, John 7:46; Luke 4:22.
3. Methods - Even the way Jesus carried Himself set Him apart from all the others around Him. Never did He stoop to the level of His enemies, but He always kept His Father's will the center of His focus. Nothing mattered to Jesus but pleasing the Heavenly Father, John 8:29.
My friends, there had never been another like Jesus and there never will be! He was and is one of a kind! Mary's little Lamb was truly special!
C. His Claim Was Special -
Jesus was never shy about telling people Who He was. In fact, His claims were what caused the Jews to seek His death. What was the claim that Jesus made that was so offensive to these people? The answer to that question is two-fold.