FBCWest 535 | The Birth of Jesus and What that Means
Recorded On: 12/25/2022
SCRIPTURE READING – Isaiah 9:2 – 7, John 1:1 – 4, 14
Praise and Worship
“O Come All Ye Faithful” vs 1,3
“The First Noel, the Angels Did Say” vs 1,4
“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”
“Joy to the World” vs 1,2,4
Proclamation of the Word
Message by Pastor Joe
“The Birth of Jesus and What that Means”
PRAYER TIME / Time of Reflection
“He Shall Reign Forevermore”
Luke 2:1 – 5 Census was ordered by Caesar Augustus so Joseph and Mary go to Bethlehem to register (God moves rulers)
Luke 2:6 & 7 While in Bethlehem Mary delivers her first born son (The Son of God) and puts Him in a manger (No room in the inn)
Luke 2:8 – 12 Angel announces to shepherds the birth of the Messiah and how to find Him
Luke 2:13 & 14 A multitude of angels praise God
Luke 2:15 & 16 Shepherds go to find the Child
Luke 2:17 – 20 Shepherds tell of the statement from the Angel about the Child. But Mary treasures and ponders these things
Luke 2:21 – 24 Jesus circumcised and then presented to the Lord
Luke 2:25 – 37 Simeon states that the Child is the “Light of Revelation to the Gentiles” and Anna says He is the One that those who are looking for the “Redemption of Jerusalem”
Transcript of Service
You know it is funny. We think. But it seems that God speaks to. The important people. At least, that's what pastors always want to tell us. That God speaks. To us and then he tells you and and you ought to listen to us. But it's but it's interesting that when God starts doing the mighty work. He doesn't seem to talk to those who you would think everybody would talk to. He doesn't talk to the religious leaders as we've gone through at this time of the. Various advent things. We've taken a look at the forerunner of of the Messiah, John. And that was told to an old man and an old woman who were bearing and had no children, and that the four owner would come. And then. To a virgin. The Angel spoke to her, saying that that a child shall be born of the Holy Spirit, conceived by that. And again it was this. Young woman. And then because of Joseph being a righteous man and having been a spouse to Mary and not wanting to disgrace her, was going to secretly divorce her, and the Angel appeared and said, don't be afraid to take Mary as your wife. Because the child conceived as of the Holy Spirit, and so in each of these cases it hasn't been talked to about the righteous people. It hasn't been the the religious leaders, it's been. If you will average people. Like you and me. And so. Now there's come a time that that. Mary's pregnancy has come to full term, but there has been an event that is. Who preceded that? And it says in Luke Chapter 2.
Now in those days a decree went out from the Caesar Augustus that the census should be taken of the inhabited Earth. This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and the family. Of David. In order to register along with Barry, who was engaged to him. And was with child. And while they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. I want I want to stop there. While God has been dealing with. Average people, people that no one would necessarily pay attention to God, is also in charge of governments. Because the Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem. They were living in Nazareth. So God says I'm going to come up with a plan to get the Messiah to be born, not in Nazareth, but in Bethlehem, as it was foretold, because that's where he was to be born. And so Caesar, Gus is the most powerful human on the earth at that time. In essence, was directed by God to conduct the census so that Mary, who happened to be pregnant at that very moment, had to go to Bethlehem to register for the census. So while God Works in our individual lives when he wants to accomplish his purposes. Even government cannot stand in his way. And goes and she gave birth to her first born son, and she wrapped him in cloth and laid him in a Manger because there was no room for them in the end. Now I want to stop there a a Manger. A lot of people used to think a Manger was like. Barn or whatever. No a Manger was a feeding through. She wrapped them in cloth and placed them in. A feeding cloth. Now, Can you imagine? Putting your baby. In a feeding truck. Let alone the son of God. And you'll hear people say, well. They were homeless. No, they weren't. They lived in Nazareth. And were required to go to Bethlehem to report for census.
They weren't homeless. It would be like you and me having. To go to San Diego. And when we get there. All the motels were full. We had to find someplace else to stay because we had to be there for an event. But it wasn't that they were poor and homeless. There were so many people in Bethlehem because. Of the census. That's where Jesus was reborn. He came from a lowly place. He was not lonely. In the same region, there were some shepherds staying out at night with their flocks and keeping watch over their flocks by night. And an Angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone all around them, and. They were terribly frightened. But the Angel said to him, to them, do not be afraid. Or, behold, I bring you good news of great joy, which will be for all the people. For today in the city of David there has been born for you a savior who is Christ the Lord. Again, notice that God doesn't announce this birth. To the religious leaders. They announced it. To a bunch of shepherds who were working. Now far be it for me. To approve or disapprove of what God does. But I think. It's kind of fitting. That he announced it to shepherd, why? It's David was a shepherd boy. And this child was a child, the son of David, the son of man, the son of God. And so, as David was a simple shepherd boy who became king, here we have. The son of God. In a Manger. Laying in a Manger announced the shepherds. This new king. And this will be a sign for you. You will find a baby wrapped in cloth. And lying in a Manger. And suddenly there appear with the Angel a multitude of heavenly hosts, praising God and saying. Lord God in the highest and on Earth, peace among men with whom he is pleased. We went from a simple Angel making a statement. Which caused fear trembling to the shepherds. The whole host. Of angels glorifying God and praising him. That must have been a miraculous and awesome sight. Often times when we celebrate Christmas, we are so busy. Did we forget? Why he came? He didn't come to make us feel good. He didn't make his fun come to say, oh, I identify with you he came because he is the Messiah. And can you think of a better way of identifying a child who is a Messiah to a bunch of shepherds than to say don't look in the Ritz Carlton? To go look. In a place in a barn where they're feeding animals. And keeping them out at cold at night, you'll find that baby wrapped in cloth and lying in a Manger, that one that will be him. For many of us. We just said, oh that's a one. Wasn't that amazing that all these angels came and they were praising God? They told us about the son of God and who's it's good news for all the people. But we got to get back to work. That's isn't that what we do. Well, it's it's not time to take off yet, so I'll hang around here and and maybe I'll find time later. But this is such good news. That they said this. When the Angels had gone away from them. Up into heaven. The shepherds began saying to one another. Let us go straight to Bethlehem. And there. We'll see this king. That this thing that has happened. Which the Lord has made known to us through our medically. They may take action. They say we heard it. Let's go see for ourselves. What joy they would have missed? They had just said no, we got. To watch the sheep. Now, I've never had to watch sheep I've I've watched some TV programs where people have. Have had sheep. I've been a pastor. Sheep is not necessarily all that great to hang around with because they do their own thing.
They wander around, they get in trouble. They said no, no let's we heard of this story. Let's go see for our. But they came in a hurry. Came in a hurry. Because they knew this was something not out of the ordinary. This was something that attacked her because Angels had announced it and glorified God. And said that the Messiah the Christ was here. Let's go see. So they went in a hurry and found their way to Mary and Joseph and the baby as he lay in the Manger. When they had seen this. They made known the statement which had been told to them about the child. And all who heard it wandered at these things which were told to them by the shepherd. But Mary treasured all these things pondering. Them in her heart. Now I want you to see some. Is a thinker? Every time something happens, she ponders it. She thinks about it. She appreciates it. Because you need to know God had been announcing this to the world, he announced it to a couple old people, announced it to a a spouse couple. He's now announced it to Shepherd. But in each of those cases, angels have delivered messages. And it's really affirming their faith. Exactly who this child is. Because these people and these angelic beings keep reinforcing who Jesus is. But also said all those around. Most people think. Not, and I humbly say that. They're wrong, both who think it's the wise men who are around. I don't, I don't think so. You come to the service tomorrow, I'll Tell you why. Little cheese. Which tells me. There were more people. Who didn't find room at the hen? And Mary and Joseph and the baby. There are other people there. And these other people heard testimony about this child. And again, we are to be witnesses. Witnesses of what we've seen and what we've heard. You don't need to be a witness of what I've seen and heard. And I don't need to be. A witness of what you've seen and heard. But we are to. Witness what God has been doing in our life. Takes all these things to heart. And the shepherd went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen. Just as had been told. Again, notice. They had the double blessing of hearing. And have seen. All too often people are content with one or the other. And most people would stop at that point on the Christmas story. But I don't. Want to stop there? Because what follows is is important. And so it says when eight days. Had passed. Before the circumcision, his name was given. It was called Jesus. The name given by the Angel before he was. Conceived in the. Just as John had been named before he was conceived, so was Jesus named before he was conceived and his parents. On this earth. Complied with the command of name Jesus Jesus, that's the Greek form Yeshua we would call him if he will. The Savior, the one who comes in the name of the Lord. He is the one he is Emmanuel. God with us. And so they comply with the law. And they circumcised him on the eighth day. And when the days or their purification, according to the law of Moses were completed, they brought him up into Jerusalem to present him to the Lord. As it is written in the law of the Lord, every first born that has opened the womb shall be called holy to the Lord. And to offer a sacrifice according to what was said in the law of the Lord, the pair of turtle doves or two young pigeons. So basically what they're saying is they're not rich. They're not a rich couple. And they also were. In Jerusalem because. Of the law requiring them to present the baby to the Lord after the days of purification from Bethlehem. So as a result, their offering was the minimum offering of a turtle dove, a pair of turtle doves are two young fridges, so they present that offering, acknowledging that the first born. Is the Lord. There was a man in Jerusalem. His name was Simeon. And this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel and the Holy Spirit was upon him. We see this man who's in the temple. He's religious, he's devout. And the Holy Spirit is on him, so he's if you will almost unique. And had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ. Who had a promise? From God that he would see the Messiah. And he came into spirit into the temple I want. To stop there. He came in the spirit in the temple. How many times when we come to church we come to church? Not wanting to be there. Hoping to get a blessing when we're done, hoping that one of the worship songs will strike a chord in our heart and we'll have this feeling and or the passer might. On one occasion at least, say something that applies to me that I can change my. What he did, he came in the spirit. Can you imagine what our churches would be like? You didn't wait for the spirit to show up. And so after you got there. But that you are in the spirit. When he came to church. Boy, if that happened, I bet people actually believe Jesus rose from the dead. We came. And the spirit into the temple. And when the parents brought in the child Jesus to carry out for him the custom of the law. And he took him. Into his arms and bless God and said. Now Lord, you're releasing your bondservant to depart in peace. According to your word. So my eyes have seen your salvation. Which you have prepared in the presence of all people. A light of revelation to the Gentiles and the glory of your. People is real. The Holy Spirit revealed that this child was that child. The Messiah. No one had to tell him. No one had to give him stories about what was going on. The Holy Spirit directed him who this child was and noticed he was saying. You can take me now. Because you've been faithful, you told me that I would not die until I see this child, and I've seen him. And he's not just he's a light. For all the. And the glory. Of your people is. And his father and mother were amazed. At these things. Which were he saying about him? Notice all these? Individuals, all these people announcing to it's not Mary, saying, you know? Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit. It's not the shepherds came and said, you know, this kid. We know each and every individual, the Holy Spirit and the Angels have announced who he is. Notice I say who he is, not who he was. They're amazed. And Simeon, bless them and said to Mary, his mother, behold, this child is appointed for the fall.
And rise of many in Israel. And for a sign to be opposed. And the sword will be will Pierce even your own soul. To the end, their thoughts. From many hearts may be revealed. And in essence. How people feel and believe about Jesus are revealed. There'll be those in his life. Who ignore him? There will be those in his life who will say crucify him. There would be those in his life who say he's crazy. There'll be those in their life who want to believe and want to confess, but because of fear they don't. And it sounds the same as today. We haven't much change. And he's telling, Mary. There's going to come a time when this little baby. Something will happen. It will be like a piercing of a sword into your own soul. And that will happen. At the crucifixion. And there was a prophetess Anna. The daughter of Pennywell Of the. Tribe of Asher And she was advanced in years. And she lived. For seven years with her husband. During marriage. And then as a widow to the age of 84. She never left the temple every night and day. With fasting and prayer. Speak of someone who dedicated to God. She serves the Lord Constant. All those years. And at that very moment she came up began giving thanks to God and continued. To speak of him to all those who are looking for the redemption of his. There's this old lady, this old prophetess who just hangs out at the temple. And she announces to them who this child is. That he is the one we've been looking for. The redemption. Of Israel, the redemption of Jerusalem. And if you will, our redemption. During this time, people want to talk about peace on her. They want to talk about joy. They want to talk about love. We want to talk about hope and faith. All of those are found. And a person. Named Jesus. The Christ the Messiah. There's no wonder. This world does not have peace. As Jesus says, my peace, I give you. Paul tells us it's a peace that. Who passes all under? He gives us joy. He gives us hope. Gives us faith. Gives us love. Gives all of these things to. And we can never out give God. All too often. And and and as I point a finger this way there's three fingers pointing back at me. We're we're so busy buying gifts for everybody, because this is the time of gift giving and and whatever. And there was an example set, God gave us gifts. It's called Jesus Wiseman gave him gifts. Sometimes we get so busy. In the shopping. And forget. The gift already given to us. Run to you. This day Has been born. They save. Name Jesus. The Lord. Is our safe? If he's our savior, then he's our Lord. And if he is our Lord, we are to do what he told us to do. And he's told us that we're to teach what he is taught, where to make disciples, where to baptize them. We are to be salt and light in this world. Would the love as he loved. Or to forgive as he forgive. Harder, not just forgive, but to forgive as he's forgive. And so when we conclude this. We're going to be lighting candles. But it's not our candle of prayer, not a candle of hope.
The candle of a statement. That his life. Is burning in my soul. And I'm taking that light. To the world. Because there is great joy. And it is a revelation of light. For the whole world. I'm grateful. On this premises. We have people who speaks English. We have people who speak Spanish. We people speak Vietnamese. We have people speak languages. I probably don't know about. The good news? In each language. Because it's a. Good news story for all. Not just some of us. Not just a good. Not just the same. For all of. And if you think. You're too unimportant for God to use. And think about. Think about Elizabeth. Think about Mary. Think about Joe. Think about Simeon. Think about Hannah. Think about the shepherd. None of those people were held in high esteem or rich. But God used them. To accomplish this. And his purposes may be great in your life or may be small in your life. But it's his purposes that we share. And this baby. Will grow up. And will teach. By word and by D. But he will demonstrate his love for us. That while we were yet sinners, he died for us. But the story dead end end there. He rose again. And he is the Messiah. He is the Christ. And he shall reign. Forever more. He did not come here to make Democrats or Republicans in charge. He came here to establish his Kingdom. And that should be our responsibility as well to establish his Kingdom here on Earth. And the way we do that is to share his story. The others. And all God's people said.