Summary: What can you give God for Christmas that He would desire?
What Does God Want for Christmas?
December 19, 2004
Text: Read Matthew 1:18-2:11
Note: From the first Christmas, we find the exchanging of gifts. We find God giving His only Son and the three wise men giving gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
Intro: Christmas is still a time for exchanging gifts and most of us will give and receive a gift this year. What do you want for Christmas? If you could have anything what would you choose? Some of us will receive gifts we need, some will receive gifts we want, some will receive gifts we like, some will receive gifts that fit, and then some of us will receive gifts that will require us to stand in a long line the after Christmas to exchange it for something we want!
Whatever the instance, amidst the tinsel and wrapping paper, we must not allow the gifts of people to distract us from the real gift of Christmas – the love of God. Let’s all unwrap the greatest gift of all – Jesus.
Story: Last week a member shared a story I want to share w/ you – Jerry’s Story.
Trans: We can be like this child at time which prompted me to ask – What would God like for Christmas? After all, some 2k yrs ago, God gave us what we needed.
I What Did God Give Us for Christmas?
Trans: God gave us so many gifts for Christmas we could be here for hours. This AM I’m going to pull an Oprah, and share a few of my favorite things.
A His Love (Heart)
Note: Central to the nature of God is that He is holy which demands justice, yet in responding to His creation he pursues us w/ a relentless and amazing love.
Verse: For God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son… Jn 3:16
God demonstrated His love for you and me… Rm. 5:8
Note: The love is God is most vividly represented in the manger when God stepped into flesh to seek and to save His lost and sinful creation.
Verse: Think of yourselves the way Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status w/ God but didn’t think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what – not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death – and the worst kind of death at that – crucifixion. Ph. 2:5-8
Note: It was love that sent Jesus from heaven to earth and love that allowed Him to be nailed Him to a cross to provide a way for love to enter into our lives.
Trans: It was God’s love that provided us w/ a second gift – His gift of forgiveness.
B His Forgiveness (Cross)
Verse: God demonstrated His love for you and me in this way, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Rm. 5:8
Note: Forgiveness is simply wiping the slate clean. Our sin was washed away. It’s relieving a debt incurred paying for it in full. In becoming a man, Jesus provided atonement for sin that could relieve our debt and wash our stain of sin.
Verse: In Him we have redemption through His blood the forgiveness of sin. Ep. 1:7
Note: In Him – Jesus is the only means of forgiveness. There is no other way.
Verse: There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to people by which we must be saved. Acts4:12
Trans: In providing forgiveness and salvation, Jesus rescued us from the penalty, power, and pain of sin and has brought us into a relationship w/ God.
He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son He loves, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. Col. 1:13-14
Note: In Christ, forgiveness is available to all men. There is no sin that can’t be forgiven and there is no person who cannot have His grace and forgiveness – if they will simply receive God’s love gift of grace.
C His Promise (Bible)
Note: In giving us His love and forgiveness, Jesus gave us another gift – His Promise.
Note: He promises He’ll never leave us or forsake us. He promises to give us the H.S. to guide, comfort, and convict us. He promises to provide the strength we need to endure temptation and a way of escape when things are beyond what we’re able to bear. He promises to give us everything we need to live a life that will honor Him. He promises that one day He’ll return for us.