Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas Challenge

This week at Wednesday Night Worship we took a week off from the "Glory Revealed" series and we talked about the Christmas season and I challenged the students with a few things.  We read the Christmas story in Luke 2:1-12.  I was asked why we were reading it then and not closer to Christmas so I responded that I wanted them to be challenged and realize some things now to be thinking about during this entire Advent season.

I shared with them that for several years Christmas would come and go and it seemed like I would say "It just didn't seem like Christmas this year."  I knew that Christmas is about the birth of our Savior, but I was missing it somewhere.  Here are three points that I want the students and myself included to get this Christmas

  • First, the latter part of verse 7 says that "there was no room for them in the inn."  We know that there was a census going on and so the city was full of people.  The city was so full and busy that there was no room for Mary and Joseph.  With the city being so busy, how many people are mentioned in the manger scene (what the Bible actually says and not what modern Christmas dramas show).  The people were believing that their Savior was coming but were too busy and missed Him.  How sad it would be to have been so close and missed this miraculous birth.
  • Second, the latter part of verse 10 says that this news is for "all the people."  Jesus didn't come for only the best of the best, He came for everyone.  I challenged the students to close their eyes and think of someone that they despise or dislike very much.  After a moment of them thinking of someone, I told them that Jesus came for that person too.  When we say that we "hate" someone, I believe it's the same as saying we are better than them and they do not deserve Jesus and instead deserve hell.  I'm so glad that Jesus came for everyone because if He only came for the best of the best, then I would be left out.
  • My third point was that the Christmas story doesn't end in the stable.  Jesus grew up "in wisdom and in stature" as stated in Luke 2:52.  Jesus grew up and died on a cross for "all the people."
Don't miss Jesus this Christmas.  I expected to get some warm, fuzzy feeling for several years from the music, movies, presents, etc. that come with the Christmas season.  I missed it too many years and regret it.  Please don't miss it this year.

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