Pastor David Moore
New Testament reading: Luke 2:8-20 (NIV)
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom His favor rests.” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen Him, they spread the word concerning what had been told to them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
Old Testament reading: Isaiah 9:6-7 (NIV)
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.
Theme: Jesus is the gift of Christmas.
1) If Jesus is the gift of Christmas, then what does that tell us about the giver?
2) And if Jesus is the gift of Christmas, what does that gift tell us about ourselves? ~D. Moore
Jesus is the unexpected gift. ~D. Moore
The world and us want power, we believe Jesus’ power will make us happy, promote better health, and save us from those other people, etcetera. ~D. Moore
But the thing about Jesus is that He came into this world in weakness and died in weakness (not power). When Jesus died, His weakness expired. ~D. Moore
Those people are the problem. The problem is those people. All of our problems are because of other people. The problem is not out there, it is me, our pressing issue is our self-centered, sin-filled nature. ~D. Moore
What we need is someone to come in and deal with our sin, show it to us, take care of its consequences, start the process of cleaning us up and lead us to freedom. This is the gift God has given you. ~D. Moore
A follower of Jesus is someone who says, “You know, I did want power. I thought my problem in life was that I didn’t have enough money, or enough connections, or enough education, and really not enough power. But now I see the real problem is that I’m broken by sin and need someone to save me from myself. I need help putting my self-centeredness away.” I didn’t know what I really needed, and when I finally did, Jesus was just waiting for me to ask Him into my heart. This surprise gift is perfect. ~D. Moore
If we consider further, and believe Jesus is the gift to us all, then Christianity is all about grace. ~D. Moore
For unto us a son is given, not just earned. Christmas is a time to remember God’s total generosity. God has given the best gift ever for all of us, who were working against God. “For while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” ~D. Moore
Romans 5:8: But God, demonstrates His own love for us in this; while we were still sinners Christ died for us.
Many people still believe in the need to earn our salvation. Part of this is we have a hard time accepting this gift, we want Jesus on our terms. To be a follower of Jesus we have to get to the place where we recognize that we don’t measure up to God’s standards, so we lay our deeds down and accept the gift of Jesus. ~D. Moore
Lord Jesus, You are my righteousness, I am your sin. You took on you what was mine; yet set on me what was yours. You became what you were not, that I might become what I was not. ~Martin Luther
What are we going to do with the gift of Jesus?
Jesus is the masterpiece gift. We must meet Jesus and then how do we react to this gift? ~D. Moore
-Do you have the JOY of someone who is all in?
-Are you willing to leave behind anything, in order to accept the gift?
If you are willing, God will transform you, your problems will be put into perspective, your self-pity will leave you, your self-esteem will grow and your anxiety about the future will diminish. ~D. Moore
The gift of Jesus will be waiting for you when you are able to open it.
Think about this amazing gift of Jesus.