Summary: Today, we celebrate God’s incredible gift – remembering 3 things: 1) Jesus was born sinless into this world by a God who loves you; 2) Jesus died, taking on our sin, so that we could be forgiven by God; and 3) We must accept Him as Lord in everything.

2014 Christmas Series (December 21, 2014)

Sermon 4 – Shepherds and Angels' Rejoice

Luke 2:1-15


- Obvious question: “What is Advent?”

-- The word Advent means "coming" or "arrival."

-- The focus of the entire season is the celebration of the birth of Jesus the Christ

-- His birth is his First Advent, his first coming, to a world in great need

-- Also reflects on the anticipation of the return of Christ in his Second Advent

- Advent is far more than simply marking a 2,000 year old event in history.

-- It is celebrating the most important truth about God

-- It’s the revelation of God in Christ whereby all of creation might be reconciled

-- It is the GLORY of God which has come down to dwell among His creation

- Over the past few weeks we have examined several very important topics:

- The joy of Mary’s heart and soul as she worshipped what God was doing in her

- The prophecy surrounding John the Baptist’s birth; focus on Zechariah

- Last week we explored the prophecy of Jesus’ birth being foretold

- IMP: Mary’s response: Luke 1:38, “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.”

- The importance to note is that OUR response must be the same

-- When God calls us to move, we need to be obedient and move

- This morning, we continue our Advent series with the Announcement of His birth

- Read Luke 2:1:15 / Pray

∆ Point 1 – The Angels Appear (v8-10)

- I want to stress here the importance of this entire sequence of events

-- Last week we discussed Mary’s lineage from the Tribe of Judah

-- Psalm 132:11 “The LORD hath sworn in truth unto David; he will not turn from it; of the fruit of thy body will I set upon thy throne.”

-- Matt 1:11-12 says Joseph, was from David, but descended from Jechonias

- APP: Therefore, Joseph would’ve had sin in him, while Mary who was a virgin (but yes, also a sinner) found FAVOR with God to carry His child

- IMP: The lineage of the perfect birth was from Mary’s side of the family

-- Keeping those in mind, let’s proceed with the text from this morning

- Joseph was living in Nazareth at the time, with a pregnant wife

-- Originally from Bethlehem, he took his family to complete the census

- Do you recall the prophecy which said where Jesus will be born?

-- In about 750 B.C, a prophet named Micah proclaimed in Micah 5:2, “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.”

- CONSIDER: Did you know that God used Caesar to fulfill His prophecy?

-- APP: Caesar caused the census to be done; but God already said it would be!!

- APP: When God’s prophecies are fulfilled right before your eyes, how can you NOT get a little excited! How can it not make you want to GO and TELL?

- So in a manger, in a place where animals ate, our Lord was laid to rest

- In my mind I imagine that the animals were in awe, praising His arrival

-- And … why not? Why would they not be rejoicing?

- APP: Jesus taught later in Luke 19:40 about worship in the presence of the Messiah – he said (when the Pharisees asked Him to silence the disciples), “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”

-- DEEPER: So, what about us? Will we shout for joy that He has been born?

-- Will we rejoice with the angels and PROCLAIM the GLORY given to us?

- Notice, that the announcement of His arrival was not on CNN, Fox, MSNBC

-- God sent an angel to proclaim to societies lowest … men living in fields!

- Re-read verse 8-10 (BOLDLY AND WITH MUCH EMPHASIS)

- These men, who lived amongst the animals in the fields, got the breaking news

-- They are the first to hear the Gospel preached from Heaven’s choir

- These men were tending the animals, probably very cold from the elements

-- Maybe hopeless & without a future, are given the greatest news ever!!

- And what are they told in response? “DO NOT BE AFRAID!!”

-- APP: Church, if God’s angels told them to not be afraid, how can we be afraid?

-- If God’s angles would tell shepherds in a field “DO NOT BE AFRAID …”

- (LOOK AT ME): How can we be ashamed, afraid, worried, or anything about proclaiming the Gospel to a world desperately in need?

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