Summary: 3rd in a series of unwrapping the gifts of Christmas, Jesus the greatest gift of all.
“The Gift of His Son”
I. The Miracle Of The Gift (18)
• “Mary was espoused to Joseph”
o In Jewish culture there was a period of betrothal that lasted about a year.
o This was before the marriage ceremony but was still legally binding.
• “She was found with child of the Holy Ghost.”
II. The Misunderstanding About The Gift (19-20)
• “being a just man”
o Not much is said in the Bible about Joseph, but what little is said is very powerful.
o Joseph was a righteous man, upright in character, a man who was obedient and faithful to God’s commands.
• When Joseph found out that Mary was pregnant he had a choice to make.
o He could have done what the Law entitled him to do; make a public spectacle and have her stoned to death.
o He could have kept it quiet, divorced her secretly and sent her away.
o The Bible says he chose grace and compassion over judgment and ridicule, “not willing to make her a public example.”
• I wonder how often when we are given a choice between doing something two ways, how often to we choose to show grace.
Matthew 5:7 (NASB95)
7 “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
James 2:13 (NASB95)
13 For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment.
• However Joseph did not have all the information.
o We can not do what is right until we know what is true.
o This was true for Joseph and it is true in every circumstance of life.
o How often we jump to conclusions and end up doing the wrong thing.
• Doing what is right (vs. 24) can sometimes come at a price.
o Think Joseph paid a price in his community for his decision to do what was right.
o The right thing will often put us in opposition to others, but we will be at peace with God.
III. The Manifestation Of The Gift (21-23)
• Manifest – to reveal something; make it readily perceived or evident by the eye.
o This gift had long before existed, but was just now being made evident so that all could see.
• “Jesus” means the LORD saves, or the LORD is salvation.
o God sent the gift of His Son for a specific purpose, “that the world might be saved through Him,” John 3:17
Colossians 1:19-22 (NASB95)
19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, 20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven. 21 And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, 22 yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach—
o God sent the gift of His Son to make a difference in our lives, to bring us back to God and present us to Him as holy, blameless and beyond reproach
o That is the only way God can take us back!
o Have you been changed by this gift?
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NASB95)
17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
• The fulfillment of prophecy, very important in Matthew’s gospel.
• “Behold, a virgin shall be with child,”
o The importance of the Virgin birth, do we believe it, do we even think about it.
o Isaiah 7:14, “virgin” can also be translated “maiden”
o Comes about because of the disobedience of King Ahaz.
o Promise of a sign.
o Matthew’s Greek word no doubt means virgin.
• What we loose if we take away the virgin birth.
o Jesus had an earthly father.
o He was not the God-man.
o He was not sinless.
o No sinless sacrifice.
o No atonement for sins.
o We are still lost and in our sin and will suffer the eternal punishment for those sins.
• “They shall call His name Emmanuel,” “God with us.”
o Because Jesus was God, we were able for the first time to behold the face of God, to be in His presence, to listen to Him speak to us and learn from Him as He taught to us.
o Through the gift of His Son we can now draw close to God and know Him in a personal way.
Ephesians 2:12-13 (NASB95)
12 remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.