Summary: What do the stable and our hearts have in common? Both are 1). Places chosen by God for His Son to be born; 2). Places needing transformation; and 3). Places through which God desires to reach a lost world.
WHAT THE STABLE AND YOUR HEART HAVE IN COMMON
A. HUMOR: Strange Illness
1. It was the doctor's last patient consultation on Christmas Eve. A mother came in with her young daughter and asked if he would examine her because she had been showing some strange symptoms: increase in weight, sickness most mornings and a number of strange cravings.
2. He checked her out very carefully and eventually told the mother that her daughter was unquestionably pregnant. At which news she protested very strongly.
3. 'Don't be ridiculous, my daughter has never been with a man.' The girl affirmed that this was true and added that she had never so much as kissed a man.
4. The doctor studied the girl very carefully, then quietly stood up, walked to the window & stared out of it.
5. Suspecting the worst the mother asked if there was something wrong.
6. "No, not really" replied the doctor, as he looked up in the darkening sky. “It might just be a coincidence, but the last time this happened a bright star appeared the East.”
1In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3And everyone went to his own town to register. 4So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.
5He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
1. The birth of Christ is celebrated throughout the world yet little or nothing is known of the exact place where He was born. We talk about a room in the Inn, but Jesus never got into the Inn.
2. Some say it was a cave, a barn, or perhaps a stable – whatever – it must’ve been around livestock because of the use of a manger for his cradle.
3. However, it makes little difference WHERE Christ was born if he is not born in your heart!
4. This morning I’m going to draw a comparison between the stable or cave Jesus was born in and our hearts.
5. The title of my message is, “What the Stable and Your Heart have in Common.” The Question is:
6. WHAT DO THE STABLE AND YOUR HEART HAVE IN COMMON? BOTH THE STABLE AND OUR HEARTS…
I. ARE PLACES CHOSEN BY GOD FOR HIS SON TO BE BORN
A. WHY A STABLE?
1. How many of you men would want your wife to give birth to her first child in an unlighted barn with no doctor, nurse, or midwife present? With no nursery, no incubator, no crib, no sanitation?
2. Oh, and did I mention that she would be in a cattle stall with the stench of cattle manure and urine – plus the dirty beasts -- all around her and the new baby? No, we pick the best hospital we can afford!
3. When was the last time you heard of a donkey born in a palace, in the King’s bedroom? That’s preposterous! Kings are born in palaces; donkeys are born in stables. Yet God allowed His Son – the King of Kings – to be born in a lowly stable.
4. Why? Because He wanted everyone to know they
could come to the Savior. Many of the world’s poor would feel unworthy to enter a palace. But everybody feels welcome in a barn.
a. A rodeo chaplain met a big-time horseracing jockey who rode in the Kentucky Derby. At the Churchill Downs track, the chaplain went into the stables to talk to the jockey about giving his heart to Christ.
b. The jockey said, "This is no place to talk about religion, so there’s an end to it!" "Oh, no, that's not the end of it," said the chaplain.
c. "Christianity began in a stable. Jesus Christ was born in a stable and you can be born again in one." He then talked to the man until he kneeled in prayer and accepted the Savior. (Christian Herald)
B. WHY OUR HEARTS?
The choice of the human heart is just as baffling as a stable!
1. Now it may seem like an odd thing that God would want Jesus to also be born in your hearts, but that is what the Bible teaches.
2. In John chap. 3, Jesus was talking to a Jewish leader named Nicodemus and said, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again." "How can a man be born when he is old?" Nicodemus asked. "Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb to be born!" 5Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. 6Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You [plural] must be born again.'” John 3:3-7.