Saturday, December 24, 2011

Jesus is the Reason for the Season

Christmas means many things to many people:
 - Presents (finding the perfect one), parties (planning all the details to outdo last year), and of course Santa.   
 - Watered down greetings Merry Christmas -> Holidays -> Winter. Happy Winter??? 

 - Our attention is being taken away from Jesus, the reason we have to celebrate this season

Jesus is the Reason for the Season

The Bible story about the birth of our Savior is one that we know:  
Luke 2:1-20 (KJV) 
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.
2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
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:)
5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
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.
8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.
20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Jesus is the Reason for the Season

Let's look closer:

Why did Jesus come?
 - To become the savior to a fallen man, because WE want to be in charge of this life instead of following His plan for us
 - Gen 1:31 tells us that what God created was good, and that Adam and Eve (living in a "good" environment) had but one action to avoid (Gen 2:17).  We know the story: soon after there is the BAD of sin that entered into God's creation, caused by man, that ruined the relationship between God and man. 
- Romans 6:23 -  For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
- Psalms 8:4 - What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?
Our God is a God of second chances!
Jesus is the Reason for the Season
How did Jesus come?
 - God left Heaven to become a man and take on the sin of each one of us (remember, He did not sin - only man has that capacity)
 - By the miracle of virgin birth (Gen 3:15 forshawdows the coming savior, as did many prophets in the Old Testament).  Note the differences between His virgin birth (Luke 1:31) and our own (Psalms 51:5)
 - He came to save the us that are born in sin 
-Psalms 51:3-4  For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.  Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.
 - In the OT, we read how people constantly fell into sin and away from God, then God judged them and punished their sin, but He always invited them back into a relationship with him.  This cycle continues today.

Jesus is the Reason for the Season

Who did Jesus come to save?
 - Salvation is offered to all who choose to accept the free gift of grace that only Jesus can offer:
John 3:16-17 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. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
****For this purpose, Jesus Christ was born on this earth – to save us from our sin and allow us to restore our relationship with God.  Like Adam and Eve, we do not need much prompting to make bad decisions - they almost seem to come with less of a fight as compared to making the "right" choice.
God: Absolute (love and holiness)         
(Offers the greatest gift - forgiveness of sins and everlasting life)

Man: Changing (sinful, never content)  
(Offers the latest fad - Tickle-Me Elmo, Kindle - will end up in ruin)

Jesus is the Reason for the Season
No gift can ever compare to the gift that we remember this day - God gave His son to me and you to be our Savior.  
- 2 Corinthians 5:21  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
But we have to decide if we want to receive this gift (His invitation is to all people, like a present under the tree.  Will you leave it there, unopened?). All other things in this world will fall short, because there is no way that we can come close to the superior gift that God has given to us.
1 Timothy 1:15 (KJV)  This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.
If Jesus was not born, then He would not have died on the cross for our sins, and He would not have risen again, a Resurrection that provides a victory of death and is the only means to restore our relationship to a loving and Holy God.
Jesus is the Reason for the Season!
Praise the Lord!

Don't Be Like Mike

My photo
Thankful that God has granted me a second chance (quite a few, actually) through my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I love the Lord, my family, and enjoy endless laps of swimming and circles on a motorcycle. Follow Jesus.