Sermons

Summary: This is the 49th sermon in the series "3:16- Numbers That Bring Hope".

Series: 3:16- Numbers That Bring Hope [#49]

THE HOPE THAT COMES FROM LOVE

John 3:16

Introduction:

This morning we will conclude our Sermon Series, “3:16- Numbers That Bring Hope” with the most well known of the 3:16’s- John 3:16. Today, the day before Christmas, I want us to focus on the importance of gift giving. The giving of gifts during the Christmas season seemingly has its roots in the gifts of "gold, frankincense, and myrrh" given to Jesus by the Magi. Of course, today Christmas shopping is about making lots of money. It has been said that "Christmas has turned into the season when people run out of money before they run out of friends."

John 3:16 (KJV)

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

Today, I want to answer 3 questions about the greatest gift ever given.

1. What was the motivation for the greatest gift ever given?

What motivates us to give gifts during the holidays?

We give some gifts because of…

? Obligation.

Sometimes we give just because it is expected. I'll bet you buy gifts for some co-workers, relatives, or other acquaintances and you don't even like them.

We give some gifts because of…

? Exhibition.

Sometimes we give gifts for show, to impress other people.

We give some gifts because of…

? Compensation.

We expect something in return. Have you ever given your boss a gift in order to gain a favor?

We give some gifts because of…

? Compassion.

During the holidays, most of us have given to someone in need.

We give some gifts because of…

? Appreciation.

We give some gifts because of…

? Love.

There are a few people in our lives that we love more than anyone else. Our gifts to them are motivated by love. What was God's motivation for giving us Jesus, the greatest gift? God not only "loved the world", He "So loved the world." God's gift of love is Jesus.

2. What was the quality of the greatest gift ever given?

We are not always pleased with the gifts we receive. It is said that the busiest days for retail stores take place in the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas. The 2nd busiest time is after Christmas when many gifts are exchanged or returned. Some gifts are returned because they don't fit or they don't work or because simply you didn't want them.

No one ever regrets receiving Jesus, the greatest gift. John 3:16 not only tells us God's motivation for giving us the greatest gift, but the quality of the gift as well. He "so loved" us that He gave "His only begotten" or His "one and only Son". God did not merely create a Savior for us. He didn't create a perfect man. He didn't send an angel that looked like a man. No, He sent His own precious Son.

The Bible tells us that Jesus is "the brightness of His glory and express image of His person" (Hebrews 1:3). Jesus said, "I and My Father are one." That's why Isaiah foretold and the angel could say to Joseph, "they shall call His name Immanuel" or "God with us". God didn't create a Savior. He came Himself, in a human body to save us. The message of the manger is our King, our Immanuel, our God is with us.

3. What is the results of the greatest gift ever given?

Many gifts have no lasting results. Most of us have gifts that are sitting in a closet or on a shelf collecting dust. Jesus, the greatest gift brings eternal results.

John 3:16 says God gave His Son "that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." The Baby in the manger became the Savior on the cross and the Lord of the empty tomb. He didn't come to give us a holiday; He came to make us holy. He didn't come to give us a reason to exchange gifts; He came to give us "everlasting life". He doesn't want us to "perish". The greatest gift you can ever receive is salvation through Jesus. He will change your life forever. He is the perfect fit. You will never ever want to exchange Him.

Conclusion:

If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent us an educator. If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist. If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist. If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer. But our greatest need, was forgiveness; so God sent us a Savior.

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