This Wednesday, we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. While many of us exchange gifts, it is important for those of us who call ourselves Disciples of Christ, Kingdom Citizens, or even Christians to recognize the greatest gift of all.
It is important, though, that we don’t get caught up in any one day. We talk about our culture of worship, here, and that we don’t have to wait for Sunday to celebrate. Sunday is the traditional day to worship but it is not the original day of worship. And, since Jesus is our Sabbath, and we are in him every day, every day is a day of worship and rest.
That’s another lesson…
And the truth of the matter is, that it is unlikely that Jesus was born in what we regard as December, anyhow.
And that’s another lesson. Back to your regularly scheduled message…
Today, I want to talk about THAT day – the day Jesus came into the world.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. (Luke 2:10-11)
When Jesus came, he brought many things with Him. Today, I want to talk about four of them that changed the world and, when you grasp them, they will change you. They are Peace, Power, Presence, and Presents.
On that day, the first thing Jesus gave us was peace.
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men (Luke 2:14)
When the angels heralded this, they weren’t talking about peace among men – because wars continued to take place. What they were heralding is the end of God’s war against man. When man first sinned, he unknowingly declared war against God. As a result, God was at enmity with man. However, Jesus came to reconcile man to God – effectively calling a truce with mankind.
The Word of God declares that He keeps us in perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3), He gives us the peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7), and He gives us the peace that will allows us to endure tribulation (John 16:33).
Experiencing this peace gives you a respite from the cares of the world. It allows you to have calm in the midst of any storm.
On that day, the second thing that Jesus gave us was power. Actually, he returned it to us – God gave us dominion (delegated authority or power) in creation.
He’s given us power to become sons of God. This means Jesus gives us the power to be like him. When we become like Him, we can do what He did – the greater works He promised we’d do!
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: (John 1:12)
And all power has been given to Him in heaven and earth. So, since we abide in Him, we have access to that same power. We can call forth resources (God’s will, culture, and intent) from heaven’s abundance into the earth realm to invade our circumstances.
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. (Matthew 28:18)
Knowing you have access to the power of God means you don’t have to accept, or be subject to, any circumstances or situations contrary to God’s plan and purpose for you.
On that day, He dwelled among us! Jesus is called Emmanuel. God with us.
Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. (Matthew 1:23)
Jesus is God made flesh.
And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. (John 1:14)
When He walked the earth, Jesus was with us in bodily form. But, when He ascended into heaven, He did something extraordinary:
He gave us His Spirit!
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; (John 14:16)
The Holy Spirit is the earnest deposit, or down-payment (2 Corinthians 5:5), of our eternal inheritance. He is the guarantee of the promise that God will never leave nor forsake us. Understanding this will remind us that no matter what we go through, we don’t go through it alone!
On that day, He gave us gifts. No Christmas message would be complete without talking about gifts or presents.
True giving is based in love – otherwise it isn’t giving. Without love, giving is reduced to mere compensation – like wages or dividends. Let’s take a look at God’s paradigm for giving:
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. (John 3:16-17)
You cannot truly live without loving and you cannot truly love without giving! And, if you say you’re living without loving or giving, you’re lying!
Jesus is not merely a gift from God, He is the Gift of God!
Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. (John 4:10)
And He is our salvation…
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: (Ephesians 2:8)
The Greek root of salvation is sozo, which means:
– Salvation from sin
– Deliverance from demonic oppression
– Bodily healing
– Material blessing (prosperity)
The Gift of God is not merely a ticket to heaven, He is the key to abundant life! (John 10:10)
Jesus stepped out of eternity into time so that on that day, we’d be able to step out of time and into eternity.
For the child of God, CHRISTmas is every day! For the citizen of the Kingdom of God, CHRISTmas is the never-ending PRESENT of the PEACE, POWER, and PRESENCE of God.
Thanks be to God for the most awesome and most precious gift of all: JESUS! The Gift of Grace and Truth! And He is truly the Gift that keeps on giving!
© 2013 – Derrick Day (www.derrickday.com)