The Reason For Christmas
Good morning and Merry Christmas!
This morning if you would like, start turning in your Bibles to .
This morning we are going to detour from our Journey Through Matthew, and take a look at the “Christmas Story” that is rarely explored.
Most of of the time when we think about the Christmas story, we think about Mary and Joseph in the manger.
The little baby Jesus being wrapped in swaddling clothes.
The wise men gathered around with gifts and acts of worship.
And there is absolutely nothing wrong with these stories about our Savior’s birth, but we often leave out one thing.
And this one thing is in many ways more important than the nice descriptive stories of how Jesus came.
And this one thing is “why?”
Why did Jesus do it?
Why did Jesus come to this earth in the form of a baby boy?
Why did Jesus endure all the things that he endured?
And this morning we are going to look at the subject of “why.”
And we are going to do so in the context of .
So, if you have found in your Bible I’d ask you to stand with me as I read starting in verse 10.
John writes this . . .
10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognise him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
Where Did He Come From?
Where Did He Come From?
Now, of course we know that when John refers to “he” here that he is referring to Jesus, the Christ, the Messiah, the Savior of the world.
And we will get to our focus here momentarily but first, where did he come from anyway?
How did Jesus even get here to begin with?
And for that we back up to the first verse of the chapter.
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning.
Now, Jesus is “The Word” or the “Logos” or the “Eternal Voice of God.”
John tells us that The Word was with God and Was God from the very beginning.
And if we look all the way back to we find that . . .
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
And the first act of God was . . .
3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.
And then . . .
6 And God said, “Let there be an expanse between the waters to separate water from water.”
And then . . .
9 And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so.
And on, and on, and on...
But the point I would like us to see from this is the fact that God said...
In other words God spoke all things into existence.
And seeing that Jesus is The Word, The voice of God, this means that when God speaks it is Jesus Speaking.
Jesus has spoken all things in to existence, including you and me.
This is precisely what John means when he says . . .
3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of men.
So, basically this morning if you are alive, you are alive because Jesus has given you life.
And we do not realize that.
Now, there is all sorts of biology that takes place but our source of life comes from God.
And when God created all of us, God did not just throw some dirt in the air but we were created with care and with love.
26 Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
We are created in the image of God.
And this doesn’t mean that we are created to look like God, but rather we are created with the same qualities and characteristics of God.
That doesn’t mean that we are to strive to be God or be like God, but rather that same character that God has expressed is how we should live our life.
And that character is one of love.
8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
God’s essential quality and character is that of love.
We were created out of God’s love and God desires for us to share His love with others.
God desires for us to love others with the same love that God shows us.
And that love is unconditional love.
Which is the the backbone behind why Jesus had to come in the way he did.
John goes on to explain to us that . . .
5 The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.
Jesus came because as human beings we have been consumed and deceived by the darkness, or better known as sin.
Sin has invaded and perverted our very core to the point that even though the light of Jesus Christ shines all around us we cannot see it because we are consumed by the darkness.
Paul writes that . . .
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
None of us are immune to it.
None of us can avoid it.
It has become part of our nature.
And because God loves us, because God created us out of His love, God knew that there had to be some way to reconcile us with him.
And that way was Jesus Christ.
16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
The very One who spoke life itself into existence would be the very one who would come to redeem us all to God.
The Only Begotten Son of God would make himself a little lower than the angels, as the writer of Hebrews puts it.
He would . . .
8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death—even death on a cross!
All for our sake.
And it all started with a Baby in a Manger . . .
4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 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.
1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (2 This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to his own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 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 near by, 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 Saviour 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 favour rests.” 15 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.” 16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
Which is where we typically leave things on Christmas.
With the shepherds glorifying God and telling the story.
With the whole world rejoicing.
But Jesus didn’t stay a little Baby in a manger.
Jesus grew up and Jesus fulfilled his mission.
That mission being the redemption of humanity.
Jesus grew up to warn us. . . .
17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.”
However, we, in our sin, had different plans.
10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognise him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.
. . .
2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. 3 He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. 4 Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth. 8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away. And who can speak of his descendants? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was stricken. 9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth. 10 Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the Lord makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand. 11 After the suffering of his soul, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities. 12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. 3 He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
He endured all of this so that . . .
12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
So, while we celebrate and rejoice over the birth of our Savior, which is a glorious event.
Let’s not forget the reason why.
Which was to redeem you and me.
It wasn’t to buy gifts and eat lots of food.
It wasn’t to visit with family and drink egg nog.
It wasn’t do all the things we like to do.
It was all for our redemption because God loves us.
So, today as we gather with our families and celebrate Christmas will we be celebrating as a child of God or a child of the world.
Because if we will be honest with ourselves, without Jesus we are celebrating a lie.
A lie to ourselves and a lie to God.
This morning before we go our separate ways for the day, we need to pause and think about the reason why.
The greatest gift of all is the gift of salvation and eternal life.
Jesus has brought that gift to all of us, the question is, will we accept the gift?
The choice is yours to make, what decision will you make this morning?