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The True Story of Christmas

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DECEMBER 19, 2021 STUDY NOTES LUKE 2:1-7 BIBLE TEACHER: CLIFTON JONES THE TRUE STORY OF CHRISTMAS INTRODUCTION Everywhere you go you see signs of Christmas, but how much of it is the truth of Christmas? Christmas is highly advertised but the “True Story of Christmas” is rarely told The greatest story ever told is that a “Savior was born” in Bethlehem Many will wish you a Merry Christmas which includes His name But there is no “Merry Christmas” without the real concept of the “True Messiah” Many will give and receive gifts at Christmas who have never received God’s greatest gift, Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Jesus is the “Christ” of Christmas) (Jesus is the reason for the season) Salvation through Jesus Christ is the true story of Christmas, the Savior was born in Bethlehem The true story of Christmas is the amazing fulfillment of prophecy, God told the story in advance God promised a Savior for sinful man, Gen 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. Genesis 3 is the account of the “Fall of Man,” verse 15 is the first promise given to fallen man Within the promise is the “Good News,” the “Gospel,” the “Virgin Birth” of the Messiah Genesis 3:15 is the beginning of the “True Story of Christmas” The entire Bible is an explanation of the truths found within the first promise to fallen sinful man Much of the verse has already been fulfilled, the rest will be fulfilled at the return of Christ There is no question that the promise of “enmity” has been and continues to be fulfilled The “enmity” is the hostility, hatred, animosity, ill will, and warfare between Satan and Jesus The “enmity” is the prediction of the continual battle between Satan’s forces and God’s people, Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. We find the beginning of the battle in Genesis and the end of the battle in Revelation The “Conflict of the Ages” is the battle between the “seed” of Satan and God’s Son, “her seed” God is speaking to the serpent when He says, “thy seed,” he is Satan who has many titles, Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. The “seed” of the serpent includes the demonic forces and all who will follow Satan’s evil path The seed of Satan will ultimately be a person, the future Antichrist, 2Th 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; (“That man of sin” is the future Antichrist) “The son of perdition” literally means the son of destruction, the Antichrist is doomed He will set himself up as God, 2Th 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. (Claiming to be God and that he deserves to be worshipped) Christ will cast the Antichrist into the eternal Lake of Fire, Rev 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. (“The beast” is the Antichrist”) Page 1 of 4 Which is a partial fulfillment of the promise that Jesus will “bruise the head” of Satan Satan’s head will be crushed at the time of the return of Christ, Rev 20:2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, The “old serpent” is the serpent of Genesis 3 at the time of the fall of man In Revelation he is now known as “the dragon,” a huge, ferocious serpent Satan has been deceiving people and leading them astray since the fall of man (Genesis 3) Satan will be cast into the abyss, and he will deceive, no more, Rev 20:3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season. Christ will confine Satan for a thousand years which is the time known as the Millennium There will be no activity from Satan during the millennium, then he will be released for a while Then the prophecy of Genesis 3:15 will be fulfilled, Jesus will finally crush the head of Satan, Rev 20:10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Christians can already sing, “Victory in Jesus,” and we will sing it throughout eternity Because all promises related to the Virgin born Messiah will be fulfilled The prophecy of Gen. 3:15 says that Satan will “bruise the heel” of Jesus (Her Seed) Jesus was “bruised” for our iniquities when He died on the cross, Isa 53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. (Satan thought he had won the war, God was winning) So, how important is the first promise given to fallen man? Gen 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. (The “True Story of Christmas” is in this verse) “Her seed” refers to the miraculous conception of the Messiah, the “Virgin Birth” of Jesus, Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. “Immanuel” means “God with us,” which is described in, Isa 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. The “child born” was the “Son given,” the preexistent Christ became the man Jesus God had promised that the Savior would be a man, the seed of woman, the time had finally come, Gal 4:4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, “The seed of the woman,” without the seed of man, Jesus was born without a human father “God sent forth His Son” identifies the Deity of Jesus and the preexistence of Christ “Made of a woman” identifies the humanity of Jesus, He is man, He is the God Man Luke 2 explains to us that “the fulness of time had come,” the time predetermined by God It was time for the birth of the Messiah, Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. How did God give “His only begotten Son? Jesus came into the world by Virgin Birth How the “Son of God” came into the world “made of a woman” is explained in Luke 2 Luk 2:1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. Luk 2:2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) What time was it for Caesar Augustus? It was time for a census to be taken What time was it for God? It was time for prophecy to be fulfilled Page 2 of 4 What time was it for Mary? It was time for her child to be born in Bethlehem All of which was according to the sovereignty of God, all was in the hands of God The stage was set, it was necessary for Joseph and Mary to travel to Bethlehem Because of the census, Joseph and Mary had to go to Bethlehem which was their home city Government officials said they must go to Bethlehem, but it was God who planned the trip God used the plan of man to fulfill His plan, which has often happened throughout history Which is true in the current events of our day and in future events, God is on His Throne Luk 2:3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. “All,” “everyone,” was required by the government to be registered as citizens Caesar was recording the citizens of earth, God was preparing for citizenship in Heaven, Heb 12:23 To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, In the original, “which are written” is the same as “to be taxed” in Luke 2:1,3,5 Whose names are written down in Heaven? The “church of the firstborn” Christians are already enrolled as citizens of Heaven even though we are still living on earth The name of the book that names are recorded in is called the “Book of Life” The “Book of Life” belongs to the Lamb who was born of the Virgin in Bethlehem The “Book of Life” belongs to the Lamb who died for those whose names are written in it Luk 2:4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) Joseph planned to go to Bethlehem in-order to fulfill the decree of Caesar Augustus God planned for Mary to go to Bethlehem so that the prophecy of Micah would be fulfilled, Mic 5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting. The prophecy is, “Bethlehem, from you One will go forth” Which is a promise of the birth of the Messiah, and we know that His name is Jesus Jesus will return to the earth to be “ruler in Israel,” when He returns as King of Kings Caesar Augustus did not realize that his decree was according to the sovereignty of God Luk 2:5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. Within the time of his census was the time of the birth of the long-awaited Messiah Luk 2:6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. The time of the birth of Jesus was not by accident or coincidence, it was divine providence The birth of Jesus was according to scripture, Joh 7:42 Hath not the scripture said, That Christ cometh of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was? If the Jews had studied the O.T. they would have known that Jesus was born in Bethlehem And they would have known that He was the “Promised Messiah” Luk 2:7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. Matthew tells us the story of “she brought forth her firstborn Son” (Matthew 1:18-25) There was a lot of excitement at the time of the birth of Jesus, but it was not because of His birth It was a joyful time because family members had come home to register for the census It was a profitable time for business owners because the travelers were spending money But all-of the excitement was not telling “The True Story of Christmas” Page 3 of 4 No one was giving attention to the babe wrapped in linen and lying in the manger Sound familiar when we consider Christmas time in America today? It is time for us to tell “THE TRUE STORY OF CHRISTMAS” (Now is the time to do it) Page 4 of 4
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