Summary: This lesson affirms the beginning of the incarnation of Jesus into the world.
1. Important Births
Four expectant fathers were in Minneapolis hospital waiting room, while their wives were in labor.
The nurse arrived and announced to the first man, "Congratulations sir, you're the father of twins."
"What a coincidence" the man said with some obvious pride. "I work for the Minnesota Twins baseball team."
The nurse returned in a little while and turned to the second man, "You sir, are the father of triplets."
"Wow, that's really an incredible coincidence," he answered. "I work for the 3M Corporation." My buddies at work will never let me live this one down.
An hour later, while the other two men were passing cigars around, the nurse came back, this time she turn to the 3rd man -- who had been quiet in the corner. She announced that his wife had just given birth to quadruplets.
Stunned, he barely could reply. "Don't tell me! Another coincidence?" asked the nurse. After finally regaining his composure, he said, "I don't believe it, I work for the Four Seasons Hotel."
After hearing this, everybody's attention turned to the 4th guy, who had just fainted. The nurse rushed to his side and after some time, he came out of it. When he was finally able to speak, you could hear him whispering repeatedly the same phrase over and over again.
"I should have never taken that job at 7-Eleven..."
a. Your birth was important -- to your family
b. Your birth was important to God -- Psalm 139.13-16
13 For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother's womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.
2. The Birth of Yeshua (Jesus) is important -- to God and US!
and behold, a voice from heaven said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased." Matthew 3.17
5 He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him." Matthew 17.5
I. The Birth of Yeshua (Jesus) was at the Right Time and Place
1. Virgin -- Isaiah 7.14
2. Bethlehem -- Micah 5.2
B. Fullness of Time -- Galatians 4.4
1. Roman Influence of Roads; Language; Pax Romana;
2. God's Use of Herod and the Census
II. The Birth of Yeshua (Jesus) was for the Right Purposes -- John 1.14-15
1. Love of God
b. Suffering Servant -- Isaiah 53
2. Nearness of God [in Garden; in Tabernacle/Temple; in Son; in Hearts
14 For this reason I bow my knees before the Father,15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, 16 that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith--that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3.14-19
3. Faithfulness of God [chesed -- determined, loyalty to covenant -- Abraham; Cross
B. Truth -- John 18.38; 14.6; 17.17
III. The Birth of Yeshua (Jesus) had Responses
A. Ignored -- House Owner -- no room in the "inn"/guest room -- Luke 2.7
The story is told of two women who were enjoying a lunch in a downtown restaurant. When asked the occasion for the luncheon, one said, "We are celebrating the baby's birthday." "But where is the baby?" said the inquirer, for there was no child to be seen. "Oh," said the mother, "you didn't think I'd bring him. Did you? Why he doesn't know anything about it." Many people in our world may celebrate the birth of Jesus but never invite him to be a part of it.
1. Guest room given to Jesus for Passover -- Luke 22.12
2. Paul in Philemon 1.22
B. Embraced -- Shepherds
1. Initial element of fear -- Luke 2.10
And the angel said to them, "Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.
2. Overriding element of Awe
C. Anticipated -- Magi
1. Jews from Babylonian Captivity?