Summary: Jesus came into the world as the Saviour to reveal God’s glory and to bring us freedom from fear, the joy of salvation, and peace on earth.
THE VISITATION #2: JESUS IS THE SAVIOUR
ILLUSTRATION: Santa Letters
• Dear Santa, you did not bring me anything good last year. You did not bring me anything good the year before that. This is your last chance. Signed, Alfred.
• Dear Santa, I’m not going to ask for a lot. Here’s my list: The Etch-A-Sketch animator, 2 packs of #2 pencils, Crayola fat markers and the big gift...my own color TV! Well, maybe you could drop the pencils; I don’t want to be really selfish.
• Dear Santa, (From a 4-year-old). I’ll take anything because I haven’t been that good.
OPENING: Christmas can be a stressful time for people.
• Stress = a force or a pressure that strains or deforms.
• One of the things is money – spending too much money on your credit cards.
• Another thing that can cause stress is family gatherings, or having no family, if you feel like you’re all alone. If you’ve lost a loved one this year, that can cause stress.
• Shopping can put pressure on you. A study said only 1 out of 4 women feel pressure when shopping. All men feel pressure when they go shopping. A British Psychologist did a study and put men in a mall and monitored their blood pressure rate and discovered that shopping is actually hazardous to your health. So guys I just gave you an ‘out’. The blood pressure rate rises to that of a fighter pilot going into combat. It’s a battle!
• I still have to do my shopping this week…
WHAT IS CHRISTMAS? “For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6).
THE CHRISTMAS STORY:
“1 And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. 3 So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city. 4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child. 6 So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
• Is there room for Jesus in your heart and home this Christmas?
THE VISITATION: Last week we read Zachariah’s prophecy:
“Through the tender mercy of our God, with which the Dayspring from on high has visited us.”
THE BIG IDEA: Jesus came into the world as the Saviour to reveal God’s glory and to bring us freedom from fear, the joy of salvation, and peace on earth.
8 Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.
• Glory – Hebrew kabod = honor, abundance, riches, splendor, dignity.
• Glory – Greek doxa = brightness, magnificence, excellence, grace, majesty.
JESUS CAME TO REVEAL GOD’S GLORY!
“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth… For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.” (John 1:14,17-18).
• To understand God’s glory, let’s put the Christmas story on pause for a moment…
THE STORY OF MOSES: SHOW ME YOUR GLORY:
• In Exodus 33, the Lord told Moses to take the children of Israel into the Promised Land.
• “So the Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend.” (v.11). Wow!
“And Moses said, "Please, show me Your glory." Then He said, "I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. But He said, "You cannot see My face; for no man shall see Me, and live." And the Lord said, "Here is a place by Me, and you shall stand on the rock. So it shall be, while My glory passes by, that I will put you in the cleft of the rock, and will cover you with My hand while I pass by. Then I will take away My hand, and you shall see My back; but My face shall not be seen” (Exodus 33:18-23).