December 25th is the day of the year people have set aside to celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. This was the most spectacular event to ever take place on the face of the earth. It was on the birth day of Jesus that God announced to the world that peace from God had come to earth and that He wished only goodwill to man. When the announcement was made, it wasn’t made to the religious people who ran His church, but to lowly shepherds in the hills around Bethlehem. God’s people at that time were as clueless about what God was doing in their midst as they are today concerning the activities of God among men.
The stage was set for this event in the Garden of Eden when God cursed Satan for deceiving Adam. He told Satan on that day, that the Seed of the woman would crush his head. And Satan knew just as surely as he had deceived Adam, the promise God made to him would come to pass at the time God set. In order to deceive man, Satan had disguised himself as a serpent, and in return, God disguised Himself in the form of the deceived to take back what belonged to Him. Isaiah prophesied in chapter nine of his prophecy that the Son of God was coming into the world and identified for God’s people the events that would take place in Israel so they would know He was among them. And when it was time for the event to unfold, God told an old man and barren woman they would have a son who would be the forerunner of Christ. He named him John, and John would be the herald of God who would announce the time of the beginning of the ministry of our Lord. Six months later, God moved on the heart of a young woman to be the mother of the baby boy who would bring God into the world and peace on earth.
When the time of the Lord’s birth neared, God moved on the heart of Caesar Augustus, the emperor of Rome, to have people go to their home city to pay their taxes so Jesus would be born in the city of David, as prophesied by Isaiah. God will move the world to bring about His plans just as He moved on the heart of Caesar, the most powerful man on earth and ruler of the most powerful nation on earth, to cause this to happen. If we have eyes that see, we would know that things on earth move according to God’s time-table and not according to what men do. What God tells us will happen, will happen just as He said. It doesn’t matter who the kings and presidents are at the time; God moves nations just as easily as He changes the direction of the wind.
Joseph and Mary arrived in Bethlehem at the appointed time; there was no room for them in the inn. The inn keeper rejected Jesus and His pregnant mother for the sake of a few dollars from his paying customers. That didn’t deter God, or Joseph and his family. Mary gave birth to the King of Heaven in a smelly barn filled with animals and rested Him in a feed trough, but God was on earth and everything on earth would be forever changed by this event. He came to His own but His own did not receive Him. He came to save them, but received rejection instead. As far as they were concerned, He was just another guy with a different opinion and a few followers. So they killed Him because they loved their sin more than they loved their God. He came as a baby the first time, and promised His disciples He would return for them in John chapter 14. He is coming a second time just as surely as He came the first time. Religious people weren’t looking for the appearing of their God then, and they are not looking for Him now. His first coming was witnessed only by the few who were expecting His appearing, and the stage has been set for His return. Those who know Him, know He is not coming as a newborn baby to die, but as the KING OF KINGS, AND THE LORD OF LORDS. The first time He came not many people witnessed the event, but this time when He sets foot on the earth, every eye will see Him and every one will know who He is because the vest He will be wearing will be soaked in His own blood that men shed as they stripped the flesh from His back. They will see the nail holes in His hands and feet, and the gaping spear wound in His side, and they will know, He didn’t come to save them, but to slay them.
If we have learned anything about God, it should be that He doesn’t do things the way we would do them. He does the unexpected that yields the best results for His people. And because He doesn’t do things the way we would, we have a hard time believing those things are of God. But dear friends, “As we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ this season, we would do well to remember this festive time is in honor of the One who came to Save Us.”
The religious people of that day killed Jesus thinking the memory of Him would fade away – they were wrong. It has been two thousand years and there are more people today who remember Him than back then. But that doesn’t keep people from trying to erase His memory from the face of the earth by trying to make this time we celebrate in honor of His birth just a another money-making opportunity – they, too, are wrong. Friends, the world doesn’t operate on money. Money is only a rich mans substitute for love, and a poor substitute it is. The real world operates on the love of God and what He did for man. If we think otherwise, we are fools. Jesus warned us, His second coming would be like it was in the days of Noah; unexpected, and would catch most people by surprise. If He said that’s the way it will be, you can believe it. Wise up! Jesus is the reason for the season, and we would be wise if we joined Him in His boat because if you are trusting in the money boat – it won’t save you. It is already floundering, ready to go down; and if your faith is in your money, you’re going down right along with it. People made fun of Noah until the rain started falling, then everyone wanted to join Noah in the ark, but for them it was too late. But it’s not too late for you to remember, Jesus is the reason for the season. Noah remembered; stowed away safely inside God’s boat and floated above the world’s problem. Those people who built their own boats trying to escape the flood, sank, and drowned in a sea of rising water brought on by their own wanton desires. DThrash