Summary: The wise men were satisifed with their Christmas.
When Christmas Isn’t What It’s All Cracked Up To Be
(Christmas In The Real World Series) 2 of 3
December 8, 2002 FBC, Chester, Illinois Mike Fogerson, Speaker
A Someone pondered what the first Christmas might have been like if wise women had come from the east instead of wise men.
a They would have asked for directions, made it to Bethlehem on time, helped with the delivery, cleaned up the stable, made a decent meal, and brought some practical gifts.
b A lot different!
B Today’s message is "When Christmas Isn’t What It’s All Cracked Up To Be."
a *Magi (Wise men) were the ancient equivalent of Jedi Knights.
(Superb knowledge of math, science, astronomy, history, agriculture, & the occult. Historians believe that you didn’t become king in Persia w/o a mastery of the scientific and religious disciplines of the Magi, approved and crowned by them)
*The prophet Daniel dealt with the Magi in Babylonia. Probably why the Magi were looking for one who has been born king of the Jews. Matthew 2:1-12 (NIV)
MT 2:1 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem  and asked, "Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him." 3 When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.  When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Christ was to be born.  "In Bethlehem in Judea," they replied, "for this is what the prophet has written: 6 " `But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will be the shepherd of my people Israel.’ " 7 Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared.  He sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and make a careful search for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him." 9 After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was.  When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.  On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh.  And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
b The wise men were satisfied with their Christmas. (ETS)
C You can have a better than usual Christmas. (ESS)
a I hope you’ll decide to pursue the things of Christmas that can’t disappoint you. (Objective)
b How can you make this Christmas better than usual? (P.Q)
T.S.: Let’s look at two things we can do that can help us have a better than usual Christmas.
I The FIRST thing we can do that can help us have a better than usual Christmas...SEEK THE RIGHT THING.
A What do you want out of Christmas? What would make it wonderful?
(Snow? Family together & happy? Holiday Spirit? Finding the perfect present? Getting the perfect present?)
a *Show clip of "A Christmas Story" with the scene of the Little Orphan Annie Decoder Ring. "Be sure to drink your Ovaltine." A crummy commercial?! Sometimes you just don’t feel like you get what you asked for.
b We’ve all been disappointed by Christmas because it didn’t deliver what we were looking for.
(Christmas wasn’t the problem. It’s our expectations. Were looking for the wrong thing!)
B The wise men show us how to make this Christmas better than usual by showing us the right thing to look for. (vv:2)
a The wise men came to Jerusalem looking for an opportunity to worship Jesus. (Opportunity to Worship the King of kings, Lord of lords.)
*The wise men not only looked for the right thing, they looked in the right place. (vv:5/6) The Bible!!!
b If were looking for satisfaction from....family, snow, presents, perfect meal, feeling we can be/will be disappointed.
"  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.  I will be found by you," declares the LORD,...."
C A middle-aged woman posted her Christmas wish list on the refrigerator for her husband to read. Rather than list certain items of desire, she simply requested "something that will make me look sexy and beautiful."