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Summary: THE TRUE GLORY OF CHRISTMAS LIES IN THE MESSAGE COMMUNICATED TO US.

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THE TRUE GLORY OF CHRISTMAS

December 5, 2010

Hebrews 1:1-3

COMMUNICATION BREAKDOWNS

Key Truth

China is a viewed by North American Company as a consumer paradise. Untapped markets for their products. But sometimes their advertising miscommunicates when it translated into Chinese.

A&W Rootbeer That frosty mug sensation Feel like your face is frozen

American Express Don’t leave home without it Stay home with it

Burger King Have it your way Reject the socialist ideal

Florida orange juice A day without orange juice is like a day without sunshine

Drink orange juice or go blind

Kentucky Fried Chicken Finger-lickin’ good Tastes like human fingers

McDonalds You deserve a break today You deserve to be beaten

Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, on a sesame seed bun

Two complete cow patties, common sauce, cabbage, fermented milk, cucumber, roots, on a steamed bun.

The True Glory of Christmas is typically miscommunicated by culture. Not just our culture, but by every culture.

The celebration of Christmas in Asia usually involves imported western traditions, but in Japan those traditions have been shaped by commercial interests. The holiday places special emphasis on romantic love, so it’s a day to spend with a sweetheart or spouse. Bakeries sell Christmas cakes as traditional sweetheart treats. And you might have to make reservations to get a table at KFC. Yes, Kentucky Fried Chicken. The fast food franchise let it be known that fried chicken is traditional for the Christmas feast. And so it is -in Japan.

T.S. If we are going to uwrap the Glory of Christmas we must key in on what it is meant to communicate to us.

THE TRUE GLORY OF CHRISTMAS LIES IN THE MESSAGE COMMUNICATED TO US.

In a Chapter dedicated to reminding us of the Greatness of Christ, the writer of Hebrews helps us focus on that true glory with two sentences. Turn with me to . . .

Hebrews 1:3

3 The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. NIV

I. The True Glory of Christmas is a Celebration of What Jesus Reveals of God

3 The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being,

A. Jesus is the shining forth brightly one of everything God is.

Heb 1:1 In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways,

* We know God not through the Law

* We know God not through ceremonies or rites

* We know God not through religion or church

Each of these may reveal some things about God, some truths, but never the full picture.

Imagine having only abstract, amateur reproductions of a Masterpiece. Would you appreciate the Mona Lisa if you only had and abstract of it. Would you be awed by its beauty or wonder?

We know God through the shining forth brightly one, Jesus the exact reflection of who he is.

B. Since Jesus is the shining forth brightly one of everything God is unwrapping the Glory of Christmas must center on him.

* not through personal experiences

* not cultural interpretations

* not our personal traditions.

Imagine having been giving the Mona Lisa and exchanging it for our version, our drawing of it.

Christmas declares the glory of God’s nature

* He is the one in control of all things, holding them together by the power of his will.

* Christmas declares His glory.

II. The True Glory of Christmas is a Celebration of What He Has Done.

1:3 After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. NIV

A. That God understood our plight

B. That God planned for our redemption

C. That God completed the work

D. That God declared his love for Humanity

Rom 5:8

8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

NIV

Author and speaker Brennan Manning has an amazing story about how he got the name "Brennan." While growing up, his best friend was Ray. The two of them did everything together: bought a car together as teenagers, double-dated together, went to school together and so forth. They even enlisted in the Army together, went to boot camp together and fought on the frontlines together. One night while sitting in a foxhole, Brennan was reminiscing about the old days in Brooklyn while Ray listened and ate a chocolate bar. Suddenly a live grenade came into the foxhole. Ray looked at Brennan, smiled, dropped his chocolate bar and threw himself on the live grenade. It exploded, killing Ray, but Brennan’s life was spared.

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