Sunday, December 21, 2014

Christmas Miracles

Key Scripture: Isaiah 7:14 "Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. (NKJV)
Christmas is filled with miracles. Today we will discuss four.

The Miracle of Incarnation
John 1 NKJV
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
14 And the Word became 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.

A. Isaiah prophesied that a virgin would conceive and bear a Son, who would be called Immanuel, meaning: God with us.

B. Jesus is both: The Son of Man and The Son of God, God Incarnate, God made flesh.

C. How can this thing be? It’s a miracle … the miracle of incarnation – The Word became flesh.

The Miracle of Reconciliation
2 Corinthians 5: 19 … God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself …
A. The death of Jesus did not save every person, but did make salvation available to every person. This is the miracle of reconciliation.
Romans 5:10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.
B. Reconciliation has little to do with winning the sinner back to love and loyalty to God. Reconciliation speaks rather to the restoration of God’s forfeited favor and the removal of His merited wrath. God’s anger was appeased and therefore mankind was reconciled.

C. Sin demands death; Justice demands punishment; Reconciliation demands sacrifice. Jesus restored God’s opportunity to forgive. Justice was satisfied, anger appeased, the wall of separation was abolished, all by the death of our Savior, God’s Son, Jesus the Messiah made possible by that first Christmas.

D. The miracle of reconciliation restored man to a place where God’s favor and grace could be accessed by sinners who were once disallowed appeal and pardon.

E. The death of Jesus satisfied justice and made God friendly toward sinners, at peace with mankind, no longer enemies and opened the door of salvation to all who would sincerely apply.
Reconciliation makes salvation a possibility … your decision makes salvation a reality.

F. Both the miracles of incarnation and reconciliation were acts of God on behalf of all mankind. Through these miracles God made a way for us to be saved.

G. This brings us to the next miracle …

The Miracle of Salvation
John 3 NKJV
16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

A. When the Angel Gabriel came to Mary and told her that she had been chosen to be the mother of the Son of God who was Messiah of her people and Savior of the world, her answer was simple and yet so powerful:
Luke 1:38 Mary responded, "I am the Lord’s servant, and I am willing to accept whatever he wants. May everything you have said come true." (NLT)
B. Whatever He wants! What does God want?
1 Timothy 2: 4 He wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth. (NLT)
C. We are saved by grace through faith and all of that made possible because of Christmas.

D. Christmas reminds us of the miracle of incarnation, the miracle of reconciliation, the miracle of salvation and:

E. God wants everyone to be saved and He needs your help to make it happen. This brings us to our 4th miracle:

The Miracle of Participation
1 Timothy 1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord who has enabled me, because He counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry.

A. The miracles did not stop with the birth of Jesus, or the shepherds visitation, the wise men’s gifts or even with the death of our Lord, oh no … these things were only the beginning of miracles.

B. The Miracle of Participation is a miracle of our earthly involvement in a heavenly plan.
1. From Mary and Joseph, the shepherds and wise men, to the angels in heaven, God involves others in His plan.
2. He is a: Whosoever will; He that hath an ear; lest at any time kind of God.
3. God always planned to include each one of us in the Miracles of Christmas.

C. You see, it is true: God has a plan, He will succeed and you have a chance to participate.

D. The Continuing Miracles of Christmas are all about you!
2 Corinthians 5:20 Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ …

1 Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light

The Christmas Story demands that we who have received the Good News Ambassador from Heaven, become Good News Ambassadors for Heaven.

Decide right now that you are going to share the Good News with someone else this Christmas. Decide to be someone’s Christmas present this year, sent from heaven’s hand to their hurting soul. Let’s all make this Christmas about the Christ Who came, born of the Virgin Mary in a stable manger in the town of Bethlehem.

This Jesus the Incarnate; Jesus the Reconciler; Jesus the Savior, wants to partner with us as we participate together in His Father’s plan.

What will be your answer? Will you participate? Will you be saved? Will you be someone’s Christmas present this year … sent by heaven’s hand to a waiting soul? Why not today!

Let God know your answer right now as we pray together.