Summary: Christmas Series - making Christmas meaningful
“3 Things we can do to make this Christmas Meaningful – Share God’s great gift with others.”
Gladstone Baptist Church – 6/8/06 pm
S1 - Too many people think that Christmas is all about getting presents. It is not.
Hi Boys & Girls – Happy Christmas. And happy birthday Jesus. Let’s sing happy birthday to Jesus …
Well I wonder what Jesus got for his birthday? Do you think that he got presents this year? Did you give him any presents? No?
What? You got presents and Jesus didn’t. But it isn’t your birthday!!! How come you got presents and Jesus didn’t.
You know boys and girls, a lot of people think that Christmas is all about presents and particularly about what presents they get themselves. In fact, one of the most important events for a lot of kids is the visit to Santa. You go and sit on his knee and tell him everything you want.
But as nice as getting gifts is, Christmas is about giving gifts not Getting gifts. Remember yesterday we talked about the original St. Nicholas. He knew that God wanted us to give help to those in need and so he spent his life helping out others. He is who Santa Claus is modelled after and ever since Nicholas lived, we give presents to each other at Christmas time.
But giving gifts at Christmas was going on well before Nicholas lived.
S2 - Christmas is all about giving. On that first Christmas, lots of gifts were given.
Christmas has always been about giving. That very first Christmas, gifts were given. Can you think of any gifts that were given that first Christmas?
That is right – the Wise men brought some gifts to Jesus. Gold, frankincense and Myrrh – all very expensive gifts. Given to Jesus. That very first Christmas, the Wise Men gave gifts to Jesus. Because it was his birthday. Why don’t we therefore give gifts to Jesus? We should! Just like the Wise Men.
But the wise men’s gifts weren’t the first or only gifts given that Christmas. Can you think of any other gifts that were given that first Christmas?
Well let me tell you about 3 other gifts I know that were given that first Christmas …
God’s gift of Jesus.
The first Gift that was given was given by God himself. He gave the best present ever to the whole world. He gave his son, Jesus.
You see, we were in trouble and needed help. God is perfect – which means that he has never done anything wrong. We on the other hand have done lots of things wrong. What are some of the things you have done wrong today?
That is an incredible gift isn’t it. Can you draw on your handouts in this first box a picture of Jesus in the manger, while I speak to the grown ups for a while.
Jesus was God’s gift to the whole world. Jn 3:16 says “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only son, so that whoever believes in Him shouldn’t die, but have eternal life.” God gave his son so we could have eternal life.
Without Jesus, we would remain in our state of sin and we would die sinners and be judged and condemned as sinners. God would have to punish us by condemning us to spending eternity separated from Him. He didn’t want that – He loved me too much - He loved you too much to leave us in our sin, so he sent his Son, Jesus to earth to live and die. He didn’t deserve to die, but He chose to die for me and you so that we could be forgiven. Forgiven and free – free to live with God forever.
This Christmas, God is offering you a free gift of forgiveness and with that comes eternal life. He is still offering the same gift – His Son. He has done everything necessary for you to just take the gift and enjoy it. God came to earth. He has revealed himself to us. But we still need to choose to accept the gift. We can leave it all wrapped up and refuse it if we want to. But God desires we take it and unwrap it and follow the true star of Christmas. 2 weeks ago, I said that the wise men set a great example to us because they focused on the true Christmas Star and were prepared to follow it wherever it led. God has shown us his true Star of Christmas – his own Son. He wants us to focus on His son and to follow Jesus. His Son is His greatest gift to us. To have a meaningful Christmas, we need to accept this gift, focus on Jesus and be prepared to follow Him. If you haven’t done this yet, don’t go home without speaking to me or someone who can help you do this.