Celebrate Jesus at Christmas • Luke 1:30-35, 38, 46-49; 2:4-7 • Dec.22
Introduction: In my opinion we cannot celebrate JESUS too much! The world keeps encroaching on the days of Christmas celebration. We need to do all we can to Celebrate Jesus at Christmas.
1. Celebrate By . . Declaring the Virgin Birth of Jesus. Luke 1:30-33
I think most everyone could understand the fright of Mary when an angel appears and makes this announcement. Certainly most women could. The angel gave simple and brief details concerning the facts of what would happen. This was a moment in history that affected eternity and the kingdom that will never end. Have you made the commitment of your life to Christ so that you will have a part of this eternal kingdom? It is sad that our world does not give the proper praise and adoration to Jesus at all times but especially at Christmas.
2. Celebrate Through the . . Documentation of How Jesus Came. Luke 1:34-35, 38
When Mary realized what the angel was projecting she asked the question, “How can this be?” She did not try to reject the announcement but wanted to know “how” since she was a virgin. The angel gave her more details and shared that the Holy Spirit would supply the needed seed and the power of God would complete the details and the Holy Child would be born without the normal use of a human man and the child would be called, “the Son of God.” Had you ever noticed the Triune God is involved in the birth of the favored child? Mary yielded to the details and said, “I am the Lord’s slave, may it be done to me according to your word.” What a dedicated woman. The angel could leave in peace as his assignment was complete.
3. Celebrate By . . Demonstrating God’s Greatness. Luke 1:46-49
Mary obviously was a dedicated young lady. We do not know much about her mother and father but she received excellent training somewhere. She considered herself blessed to be chosen by God for this assignment. Do you note she calls the baby not yet born her Savior? Baptists do not worship Mary, but we must admit she was an outstanding young lady. Of course, since God chose her, He knew about her past, present, and future. She did not protest being used this way by God, and exalted in His choice.
4. Celebrate By . . Deciding To Welcome Jesus Into Your Life. Luke 2:4-7
Joseph also proved himself to be a very good choice to be the earthly father of Jesus. He had to be dedicated to make the decision to put Mary away privately. Of course, that kept both of them from the gossip mongers. But then an angel talked to Joseph, and he believed the information about Mary’s pregnancy and immediately began to make the plans necessary to help in the birth of this holy Child. Knowing all of these facts and studying them helps us to Celebrate Jesus at Christmas. Amen? Amen! (For a more detailed outline, go to: http://www.preachhim.org/SundaySchoolIndex.html.)
Stay Open and Obedient • John 15:1-17 • Dec. 29
Introduction: The lesson title gives good advice to all who are serious about Christ.
1. Stay Open and Obedient for the . . Possibility of Bearing Fruit. 15:1-4
When it comes to people belonging to Christ – Southern Baptists – believe when Christ saves us we are eternally saved. The degree of our faithfulness relates to our personal dedication and willingness to be obedient. If you have a problem with our doctrine of security, I suggest you study Article V, God’s Purpose of Grace, in the Baptist Faith and Message. Being one who bears fruit takes pruning in the real world, and the illustration is here for every Christian to analyze and learn more about becoming a productive servant of Christ. Note the statement in verse three about being clean. We should never drift away from a close relationship with the Lord.
2. Stay Open and Obedient through the . . Production of Much Fruit. 15:5-8
The works and activities of one who is not abiding in Christ produces nothing but what needs to be thrown in the trash and burned. Most preachers know about preaching in their own ability and failing to spend significant time alone with the Lord in prayer and study. When an experience like that comes it also causes one to walk closer to the Lord, and his prayer life will be affected and the Father glorified.
3. Stay Open and Obedient for the . . Partnership of Love In Jesus. 15:9-10
Why would anyone not want to remain in the love of Jesus? I consider it a major blessing to be loved by the Lord. He loves us so much He sent His Son, and the Son was obedient unto death even the death of the cross. That is a major act of love. Keeping the commandments is mentioned several times in the Bible as an act illustrating a person’s love. None of us are perfect in keeping the commandments but that should be our goal. If this is our intent, we will recognize through the years how it blesses us and our homes.
4. Stay Open and Obedient for . . Practicing A Lifestyle of Love. John 15:11-17
The Lord patterned how He wanted the disciple to love, and He specifically said, “As I have loved you.” He made this a command. Why? He knew in a love relationship life can be more simple and enjoyable. All of the disciples proved their love as all but John died a rather violent kind of death rather than reject their love and commitment to the Lord. John died on the Isle of Patmos in prison confinement. These kinds of actions are similar to what we see in the Iran prison as Pastor Saeed Abedini refuses to recant his faith in Jesus. He certainly gives a modern day example of one who demonstrates his love for Jesus. Saeed also shows us one who can say he believes in the title of this lesson; Stay Open and Obedient. Amen? Amen! (For a more detailed outline, go to: http://www.preachhim.org/SundaySchoolIndex.html.)