Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: We enjoy "Silent Night" at Christmas, but what if every night is silent? How do we endure quiet seasons of life when nothing is stirring . . . even God?

Silent Nights

Pt. 2 - Closed Doors

I. Introduction

Silent night, Holy night

All is calm, all is bright

Round your virgin mother and child

Holy infant so tender and mild

Sleep heavenly peace,

Sleep heavenly peace!

Silent Night although it is one of the most popular (top 100) Christmas Songs of all time I am not sure it is really very accurate. Silent Night wasn't silent. Don't stylize the moment with white Christmas or holly hanging over a trough. Think about it only in the natural . . . sheep, cows, stable, full city, and on top of all that labor with no meds, and a baby. It wasn't silent in the natural. It wasn't silent in the supernatural. In fact, because it was the night that the savior of all mankind was being birthed into skin and as John would declare was "moving into our neighborhood, it was in fact one of, if not the loudest nights in history. No, this night was not silent. What was silent was the silence that took place before that night.

God silence. We have glamorized and romanticized that night as a silent night. We love to sing about it and think about it in this manner! However, my problem is that when dealing with God it seems that one silent night often turns into silent nights (plural).

So what must we know about this silent, hard to hear, God? What do we do when we can't hear?

Text: Luke 2:3-7

Everyone was required to return to his ancestral home for this registration. And because Joseph was a member of the royal line, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, King David’s ancient home—journeying there from the Galilean village of Nazareth. He took with him

Mary, his fiancée, who was obviously pregnant by this time. And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born; and she gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him in a blanket and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the

village inn.

It is apparent from the reading this morning that Mary and Joseph were traveling with no reservation. It was apparent that Mary was pregnant. Get this in your "mind's eye . . . a pregnant lady either riding a donkey or walking from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Approximately 70 miles. Walking . . . riding . . . pregnant. It is estimated it took 29 hours . . . almost 3 days of bouncing, plodding, uncomfortable journey to get to their destination. I can assure you that there were moments in the journey that they thought about stopping right where they were. And then to top it all off they arrive at their destination and there is no room for them in the inn. Debate rages over whether Luke was referring to a public inn or was referencing a guest room on a family member's house. I think that it is irrelevant at this point and what is fact is there was a space issue!

What is really essential here is that in spite of her condition and the desire to stop short or call the journey off half way they had to get to Bethlehem. They had to get Mary to the right place to fulfill the prophecy spoken in Micah 400 years before Jesus' birth that states Jesus would be born in Bethlehem. Then when they arrive at what they believe is their destined place . . . doors are closed to them! God was silent!

One man made this statement . . . God will book all the hotels to keep you from checking into the wrong hotel.

We don't like a silent God especially when His silence is heard thru a closed door.

We hate closed doors! But what if every door that is closing to you is God keeping His prophetic word over your life? Closed doors moved Joseph and Mary into position to fulfill prophecy!

Your destiny is being held open for you! However, you have to know that a silent God will allow some doors to be closed right in your face! If you let a closed door stop you you will never find the right door.

Every detail of His Word was protected and fulfilled. If God said it . . . Even if He isn't saying anything right now He will do what He has already said. Silence is not permission to take up residence in a closed place or to force open a closed door! Silence may reveal His hand for you rather than against you!

All of that to say that you cannot force your way into a place/job/relationship/commitment that He has worked to fill in order to keep you out!

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