6-Week Series: Against All Odds

Sermons

Summary: When the Grinch stole Christmas, it was one of the best things he could have done, because, it not only reminded the citizens of Whoville of the real meaning of Christmas, but it also brought a revelation to the Grinch himself that Christmas was, perhaps, something much more!

WHEN THE GRINCH DID WHOVILLE A FAVOR

Lk. 2:6-14

INTRODUCTION

A. CHRISTMAS QUIZ

See how well we know the facts about the first Christmas: 1. When Mary and Joseph went to Bethlehem, how did they get there?

a. They walked

b. Joseph walked; Mary rode a donkey

c. They took a chariot

d. We don’t really know

(The correct answer is “D.” The Bible gives no record of their means of travel.)

2. How many angels spoke to the shepherds?

a. A multitude

b. Two ­ Gabriel and Michael

c. One

d. Not sure

(The right response is “C.” Luke 2:10: “The angel said to them…”)

3. What song did the angels sing?

a. “O Little Town of Bethlehem”

b. “Joy to the World”

c. “Glory to God in the Highest”

d. None of the above

(This is a trick question. The correct choice is “D.” According to Luke 2:13, they were: “…praising God and saying…” There’s no mention of them singing anything.)

4. What animals were present at Jesus’ birth?

a. Cows, sheep and camels

b. Horses, sheep and donkeys

c. Lions and tigers and bears

d. None of the above

(There is no mention in the Bible about any animals being present. The answer is “D.”)

5. In what books of the Bible can you find the Christmas story?

a. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John

b. Matthew and Luke

c. Mark and Matthew

d. Matthew, Mark and Luke

(The right choice is “B” -- Matthew and Luke.)

B. TEXT

6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and 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. 8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

C. THESIS

1. This is the third in our series on “The Grinch,” the green, fuzzy creature in Dr. Seuss’ story who doesn’t like Christmas.

2. You see, he thought that Christmas was just the presents, the lights, the food, the songs and the decorations – all things that could be bought in a store.

3. He had the same wrong concept of Christmas many Americans do. But after he’d stolen all the Christmas trappings, he made a discovery – that Christmas was more than he thought! Let’s see a video of it:

4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8J-YmVs1j0

5. THE GRINCH MADE THREE DISCOVERIES:

a. There are Two Christmases;

b. Christmas Can’t fit in a box;

c. Christmas Isn’t a Thing, but a Person!

6. The title of this message is “When the Grinch Did Whoville a Favor!”

I. THE TWO CHRISTMASES

Grinch finally saw that there’s the artificial Christmas that

we see, but there’s another invisible Christmas behind it that is the real Christmas!

A. THE CONSUMER CHRISTMAS

1. WHAT DO AMERICANS THINK ABOUT CHRISTMAS?

A Barna Research Group poll found that:

a. 37% of adults (88% identified themselves as Christians) said the birth of Jesus is the most important aspect of Christmas.

b. 44% said family time is the most important.

c. 3% said presents or parties were the most important part.

d. 3% said the most important part of Christmas was that they got a Paid Holiday.

e. Barna commented, "Americans are more likely to correctly recall the significance of April 15 than they are to connect Christmas with the birth of Jesus.

2. ILLUS.: OMITING JESUS

a. Two women who were having lunch in an elegant hotel were approached by a mutual friend who asked the occasion for the meal.

b. One lady replied, “We are celebrating the birth of my baby boy.” “But where is he?” inquired the friend.

c. “Oh,” said the mother, “you didn’t think I’d bring him, did you?”

d. That’s not too different from the way the world treats Jesus at Christmas! [Bible.org]

3. So WHAT HAS CHRISTMAS BECOME?

a. A month-long shopping spree

b. A time of gaining seven to ten pounds

c. Enduring traffic jams at the local mall, Wal-Mart

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