Summary: Each year God sends us the same Christmas card inscribed with His message of love; when we open it and read it we know what His one & only Son did for us.

Dr. Tom Doubt, Senior Pastor

Four Mile Creek Baptist Church

Richmond, VA



A. Sending of Christmas cards is a 163 year old tradition

1. It began in England in 1840

a. The first cards showed people drinking & partying

b. Christns complained, so card companies changed to more religious images

2. This year the entire world will spend about $1 billion on Christmas cards

a. I really enjoy receiving Christmas cards

b. Nearly all of the cards have interesting pictures & words & themes that somehow relate to the season

3. Most cards convey the idea of the birth of Jesus

a. Many speak of noble Christian attributes: love, joy, peace, hope

b. Some even secularize old Christmas legends, like St. Nicholas

4. Most folks would agree with what the cards say

5. This Christmas Eve I want you to reflect on another "C" of Christmas, the Christmas CARD. Among all the cards we get, I want to emphasize THE card.

B. God sends us THE Christmas card each year

1. It is THE Christmas card from heaven [Clarence Sexton, Baptist Vision, Dec. 2003]

2. The inscription on the card is one of most well known verses in all the Bible. It is JOHN 3:16 . Let’s recite it together.


A. Although well known, the verse is one of hardest to really believe

1. It is difficult to believe God loved us so much that He would send His Son. Send us His Son to bleed & die on a cross for sinners like us.

2. Yet each Christmas this card from heaven reminds us it is true.

a. Of all the cards we get, this one is full of tremendous encouragement & joy.

b. It gives us the complete story from Christmas to Easter written in God’s love.

B. Tonight we again open & read this Christmas card from God, on the eve when we celebrate His Son’s birth.



1. “For God” expresses the source of love

2. “So loved” states the fact of love

3. “The world” defines the object of His love, the whole world

4. Though we do not see God, we have learned to love Him (1 Pet 1:8)

a. This belief becomes our joy through this love.

b. Because we are the object of His love , it is for all of us for all of time .

5. Where there is great love, there are always miracles [Willa Cather, quote on a card]

a. Great miracle is that God sent His Son.

b. It was the incarnation of God in flesh, fully God, full man.


1. “He gave” was an act of love

2. “His one & only Son” describes the perfect gift of love

3. THE Christmas card from heaven was delivered to us in person by Lord Himself. For unto us a child is born, a son is given (Is 9:6. Not given by anything we did, but by hand of God. This child born to us was not ordinary child, but Divine Christ Child.

4. In the beginning was Word, the Word was with God, and the Word was God (John 1:1). Clearly, the Son is divine.

5. This one & only Son of God was given all authority in heaven and on earth.

a. The government will be on His shoulders.

b. He will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlast Father, Prince Peace.


1. “Whovever believes in Him” is a message of love.

2. THE Christmas card from heaven was not printed with idle words. It was inscribed with a message everlasting importance. For you, for me, forever more.

3. To believe in Jesus Christ is not simply knowing of Him. Rather, we are to know Him which means a personal relationship. We live by this faith. We are saved by this faith. And we endure by this faith.


1. “Not perish” is the first of 2 fruits of God’s love.

2. THE Christmas card from heaven came so we might be saved, might have peace. The calf, lion & yearling will lie down together (Isaiah 11:6). A little child will lead them, none other than the Divine Christ Child.

3. Illustration: When the Israelites traveled from Mount Hor they complained against God (Num 21:5-7), so the Lord sent venomous snakes. Many died from snake bites; the people pleaded to be forgiven. God told Moses to put one of the snakes on a pole. Anyone who looked at the snake would live.

4. In a similar way God made the sinless Jesus to take on our sins in order that we would not perish.

a. He was put up on cross, like like the snake Moses put on pole.

b. We do not have to touch cross, just look to Jesus, and we will be saved.

c. Look in the manger, look on the cross. If you do it with belief in Christ, you can be saved.


1. “Eternal life” is the 2nd fruit of God’s love.

2. THE Christmas card from heaven concludes with this great promise.

a. Rooms in God’s mansion are prepared for each of us.

b. Believe in the name of the Son, so know you have eternal life (1 John 5:13).

3. Eternal life is not simply about going to heaven. Rather it is coming into the Kingdom now. God knows His plans for us, to prosper & not come to harm (Jer 29:11). Plans to give us hope & a future, this & every Christmas.



1. But the darkness did not understand this light (John 1:5).

2. Each year we need this light to read THE Christmas card from heaven. Without this light, we cannot believe in the love of God shown to us. Without light, we will never understand the message of THE Christmas card.

B. The sanctuary is now darkened as a symbolic act of a darkened world without the light of Jesus Christ.

1. Deacons will light their candles & take this light to you.

2. They receive their light from mine which is drawn from the Christ candle. Notice the symbolism of how we light the candles. The unlit candle bows before the flame.

4. As the light of Christ spreads, the sanctuary becomes brighter. Even as our lives become brighter because of THE Christmas card. What Joy To The World we have to proclaim!!

[note: Power Point slides, with Christmas card themes, are available to supplement this message. Contact Pastor Doubt directly.]