Today’s devotional is my Christmas sermon.
Christmas, God’s Love Letter to the World
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. (John 3:16)
INTRODUCTION: Christmas is a celebration of God’s love.
God is love.
“He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.” (1 John 4:8) Man is sinful and corrupt. From Genesis 3 till now, the only way of making reconciliation is a blood sacrifice. God made the first blood sacrifice in the garden of Eden, when He clothed Adam and Eve. Israel sacrificial system covered their sin, but was never permanent.
God tells of the coming Messiah.
“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” (Isaiah 7:14)
“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.7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.” (Isaiah 9:6-7)
God tells where the Messiah will be born.
“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.” (Micah 5:2)
God tells when the Messiah would come.
“But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.” (Galatians 4:4-5)
God tells why the Messiah came.
It was God’s love for His creation that caused Him to send Jesus to be the one-time sacrifice for our sin.
“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
“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. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” (John 3:16-17)
“For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” (Luke 19:10)
God has a book.
It was all about the salvation of men and women. God has a book in which the names of all those who have trusted Christ are written. One day this book will be opened and those names not found in it will be cast into the lake of fire.
“And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:15)
God expressed His to love to us by sending Jesus.
“Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (1 John 4:10)
What will we do this Christmas for Him? Step back and take time to remember why Jesus came. What can you do for others during this Christmas season?
God loved us. How should we love others?
“Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.” (1 John 4:11)
“Love suffereth long, and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.8 Love never faileth: (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a)
If you know God’s love, share it with others. If you are not saved, this would be a perfect time to accept God’s provision for your sin.
READ Matthew 1:18-2:12 and Luke 2:1-38
The Christmas Story
Tom Stearns, WASI Chaplain, 907 715-4001