Summary: Some have said that one man missed the celebration. The Inn Keeper missed the coming of the Messiah. In reality there was an Inn filled with people and a town who missed the celebration.
“Missing the Celebration” Luke 2: 4-7
Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, the only Son of God.
There were a number of people surrounding the birth that Christmas, like Mary, Joseph and the shepherds.
Some have said that with one simple statement, Luke tells us of one man who missed the celebration. [Inn Keeper]
In reality there was an Inn filled with people and a town who missed the celebration.
Today I want us to focus on some possible reasons they missed this wonderful celebration.
As we look at these reasons, we’ll find those same reasons are still causing people to miss the celebration.
1. They Weren’t Looking for the Messiah To Come:
When we took the youth group to Detroit for “World Changers” We found out when we left Detroit that no one had made any motel reservations for the return trip. The idea was that finding a motel would be no problem. We stopped a number of times, only to find no rooms or not enough rooms. I drove the van from Detroit Michigan to Charlotte NC before finding a room. We were only a couple of hours from home but I was exhausted and had to get some sleep. 14 hours and no where to sleep.
Not one signal motel clerk knew we were coming. Had they been looking for us they would have made arrangements for our arrival.
The people of Bethlehem were not expecting the Messiah to come, especially not during the busiest time of the year.
See Caesar had made a decree that filled the towns and villages to the brim. Everyone had to go to their home town, their place of birth, to be counted and pay their taxes.
The towns people were not looking for the Messiah. They were looking for crowds of people.
Full towns meant lot’s of excitement, lot’s of spending. Spending meant $$$$$PROFIT
Store keepers were looking for profits, not the Messiah. Eateries were looking for hungry people, Inns keepers were looking for rooms filled with people, not the Messiah and certainly not in the form of a baby, born to parents like Mary and Joseph. They certainly were not from royalty.
What are you looking for this Christmas?
The people in Bethlehem missed the celebration because they weren’t looking for the Messiah. Second reason they missed the celebration was…
2. They Failed to Recognize the Savior when He showed up:
No one was looking for the Messiah, the Savior of the world, to come in such a small package.
At this point He was just another baby, born to poor parents. Mary was forced to bring the One who would save us from our sin into the world in possibly the most humiliating way known to man.
There are a couple of thoughts on the stables of that time.
Some were cut out of the side of the hill, sort of like a cave. If this was the case, think about what was in there. It may have been packed with the animals of the travelers, along with the smells of those animals and the smells of everything that used to be in those animals.
How many mothers would jump at the chance to give birth in that situation?
Another thought was that the stable was in the middle of town square. It was a fenced in area, where the animals were kept.
If this were the case, imagine this scene. You’re in the middle of one of the most private and precious moments a mother can experience and you’re in the middle of town square.
You’re giving birth and the whole town is walking by, watching.
Either way the Savior was born while the whole world walked by…and no one noticed.
Not one person in town recognized the Messiah had come.
The towns people saw the crowds and maybe old friends but not the Baby who would be King.
People today fail to recognize the Savior because they are looking for stuff or programs and not a Person.
The third reason they missed the celebration, was…
3. They Didn’t Even Want a Savior, especially one like Jesus:
a. A savior, like Jesus, means inconvenience…
b. A Savior, like Jesus, means responsibility…
c. A Savior, like Jesus, means change…
These three reasons for missing the Celebration are still true today. People feel that Christianity is an inconvenience. They don’t want the responsibility that comes with salvation and they certainly don’t want to change some of the things in their lives.
I was witnessing to a friend who said he watched me and Suzanne and he didn’t think he could do all that we do. I told I was not asking him to be the pastor…
Some day Jesus is gong to return and people will miss that celebration too.