“The people who walked in darkness Have seen a great light; Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, Upon them a light has shined.
For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Isaiah 9:2, 6 NKJV
We are a world walking in darkness. We go about stumbling around, unable to see clearly for each step. In that darkness we find ourselves tired, as we strive and get nowhere. Such was life before the light shone on the day the light came into the world.
I remember my own meandering in the darkness and the great damage and trauma I suffered. I was a man trapped by sin, and helpless to help myself.
God looked upon His creation, and saw the great need, even before it all began. I think back to Adam and Eve in the garden, I think of the great promise to them and the curse on the serpent.
“So the LORD God said to the serpent: “Because you have done this, You are cursed more than all cattle, And more than every beast of the field; On your belly you shall go, And you shall eat dust All the days of your life. And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, And you shall bruise His heel.””
Genesis 3:14-15 NKJV
Through the entirety of the Old Testament, God demonstrated His steadfast love to His people, and guided them step by step to the time when He would bring the One who would make it all right, the one would bring light into darkness.
“But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.”
Galatians 4:4-7 NKJV
This morning we will open gifts, wrapping paper will fill rooms and we will rejoice in family fellowship. Let us not forsake the greatest gift of all, the great salvation brought by Jesus, the reason for the season.
In many places in this world, there will be people who do not spend this Christmas morning sharing wrapped presents, but who meet to worship Jesus, often under the threat of attack and death.
They will worship in the face of peril. There will be no laughter, no delight, but there will be joy and the heavy weight of God’s glory over them.
Persecution peaks on the holy days, so let us pray for our brothers and sisters in the persecuted church. They know the reason for the season.
Let us also celebrate Jesus every day, not just this morning. Each day I encounter the wonderful One, as I know that Jesus intercedes on my behalf. I have a counselor that I bring my troubles to, who listens to my prayers. He is my Mighty God, Jehovah Saboath, and Jehovah Nissi , who is the power uplifting me, and He who goes before me.
He is my Everlasting Father, and who I will spend eternity with, and He is my Prince of Peace who makes my life livable day by day. Through Jesus I have peace with God, and I have gone from enemy to friend.
Brothers and sisters, let us rejoice in the birth of Immanuel, God with us. He has been made low, yet still glorious.
Let us tell of the story of how God saved us from our sins. How Jesus was born to die, that we might live. May we celebrate our savior with our lives!
Have a Merry Christmas!