Summary: This message is from the greatest verse in all the Bible. as we un wrap and rightly divide this verse we see why God's Love is the greatest gift ever.

Unwrapping Heavens Greatest Gift

John 3:12-17


Just a few days before Christmas, a postal worker at the main post office found an unstamped, handwritten, envelope addressed to God. Curious, he opened it and discovered that it was from an elderly woman who was in great distress because all of her savings—$200—had been stolen. As a result, she wouldn't have anything to eat for Christmas.

The man went to his fellow postal workers and took up a collection for the woman. They all dug deep and came up with $180. Putting the money in a plain envelope, with no note or anything, the postal workers sent it by special courier to the woman that very day. A week later, the same postal worker noticed another unstamped letter that had been addressed to God in the same handwriting. In it, he found a brief note:

"Dear God, Thank you for the $180 that you sent me for Christmas, with out this gift, it would have been a bad Christmas. P.S. It was $20 short, but that was probably those thieving postal workers."

What are you hoping to receive this Christmas???

American Express did a survey recently and found that 31% of people said that receiving a “fruitcake” would be the worst gift of all. In fact, more people indicated that given a choice between a "fruitcake" and receiving nothing at all, they would choose “nothing.” The survey then went on to find out how people get rid of a gift that they don't want.

*30% hide it in a closet

*21% return it

*19% give it to someone else

We all know the Bible says that it is “more blessed to give than to receive.” However, as we approach Christmas, with all of the giving and the receiving, even the biggest Scrooge among us likes to receive a gift. For many, including myself, one of the best parts of receiving a gift is the anticipation and the excitement that comes the unwrapping of that gift. We are thinking, “I wonder what it is?”; “Is it what I want?”; “I hope I won't look disappointed if it isn't!”. Everyone in this room knows exactly what I am talking about!

Well, regardless of whether you get a new i phone 6, a new set of lady bug slippers, or that new car you have been dreaming of, none of that matters!

I want you to know the greatest and best gift that has ever been given is the Love of Jesus Christ. And, once you open this gift, you will never want to return it, and you will never be the same!

The Apostle Paul, when gazing at the gift that was given to him, said in 2 Corinthians 9:15 : “Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” Paul, who was never at a loss for words as one of the best preachers of all time, when pondering the Love of Jesus, could only say, “I can't describe Him. All I can do is fall on my knees and thank God for His inexpressible gift."

In our text this evening, John the Baptist writes about the great, unspeakable gift of God. He helps us to understand Jesus and His Love a little more clearly. He helps us If you will, to unwrap Heaven's greatest gift. I would like for us to take some time this evening to look into God's word. I want us to see what the Lord gave us when He gave us His Love. I want us to be excited about His gift and I want us to fully appreciate who Jesus is and what He has done for us. I want to preach for a few minutes on this thought: "Unwrapping Heaven's Greatest Gift."

*** STAND *** READ *** PRAY ***

“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.” (John 3:16)

Contrary to popular belief, Jesus Christ did not have His beginning in Bethlehem! He was born there as an infant, but He has been around for all eternity. In fact, He is the great “I AM”! He is the agent behind creation

> His mission was planned before the world was created, but it was carried out on this earth over some 2,000 years ago! ~**God didn't just give us baby Jesus on that first Christmas He gave us Love** and that love was in the flesh of His son Jesus

Friends!: This wasn't man's plan or the Southern Baptist's plan. It was a plan born in the heart of God - born in His love for you!

The greatest verse in all the Bible on the love of God is John 3:16 this is the verse I want to focus on this evening. Its theme is the gift of love.

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