Please remember that sermon notes are meant to act as a guide and may not be exactly what was preached.
The first thing we celebrate is when Jesus came to earth. At that time He sort of snuck in – a king born in a barn?
Hundreds of years before His birth, the prophets Isaiah and Micah, had prophesied His birth in Bethlehem to a virgin. Both Mary and Joseph had been told by an angel of what, and who, this child was going to be. The coming of Christ had been announced by Gabriel to Zechariah in the Holy of Holies, in the Temple of Jerusalem … Angels announced the birth of the Messiah to shepherds …
Those same shepherds found the Baby just as the angels said and spoke to everyone about what had taken place … Magi/wise men/3 Kings came from the east to find the One born King of the Jews, the chief priests and teachers of the law spoke to the magi about where the Messiah would be born … And God even sent a star to guide the Magi to the place where Jesus was, a star that could be seen by everyone…
In spite of all of this it seems as though the coming of Christ, the Messiah, the Savior of the world, was not really understood or noticed. Yet Jesus fulfilled over 300 Old Testament prophecies from when He was born to His Resurrection, all of which had been written hundreds of years before in and under the Old Testament/covenant…
While we celebrate the past, the second thing we celebrate at Christmas, the thing we choose to look forward to, is His promised return. His second advent, His second coming, is Biblical truth which is the foundation of our Christian hope. Just as the people of Israel looked for the coming messiah, we too look forward to the coming of Christ our Lord and King!
Jesus said in John 14:1-3, “Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. ‘If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.’”
The angels at Jesus’ ascension said in Acts 1:11, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven.”
But, unlike His first coming, His second coming won’t go unnoticed: “At that time, after the anguish of those days, the sun will be darkened, the moon will give no light, the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. “Then everyone will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds with great power and glory” (Mark 13:24-26 NLT).
“Look, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes (nations) of the earth will mourn over Him [realizing their sin and guilt, and anticipating the coming wrath]. So it is to be. Amen” (Revelation 1:7 AMP). Just as there was a promise for a Savior given in the Old Testament, there is a promised return in the New Testament.
In Isaiah 42, 700 years before Jesus birth, The Holy Spirit told us, “Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them.” In 2 Corinthians 15, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” In Revelation 21, “He who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’ Also He said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’”
The gift of salvation and grace that was born into this world so long ago is available right here and right now, today. We now live under the New Testament covenant: what Jesus gave us with His life. The Old Testament covenant is done away with, Jesus fulfilled the prophecies as the Messiah, the Savior of Mankind, He came so that we could be free from our bondage to sin. “For He says, ‘In a favorable time I listened to you, and in a day of salvation I have helped you’” (written down by the prophet, Isaiah 49:8). “Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Today, the third thing we celebrate is Christ. Because today you can receive the gift of salvation, the forgiveness of sin. Today, you can have new life in Christ! Today you can, Put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and be renewed in the spirit of your minds… put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness (see Ephesians 4:22-24). In Jeremiah 29:11 we read, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord.”
Are you walking in His plan or your own? The only way we can have new life is to walk according to His plan. Part of His plan for you started with the birth of a child in a manger… Do not let the coming of Christ, His birth, life, death and resurrection, go unnoticed in your life… do not act as though it never happened. Make room, He is coming again. Are you ready?
So, the reason we celebrate Christmas is Christ, plain and simple. Jesus is the reason for the season. In Him, you can have peace, hope, joy, and love!
- Do you have hope in Christ?
- Are you ready for the second coming?
- What are you doing today while you wait?