Key thoughts from my Christmas sermon

In my message yesterday I wanted to show that down through history people have viewed Jesus in different ways. Some have seen Him as He is, while others have seen Him as a threat or from a wrong perspective.

When we look to the Bible we find the right response and reaction to Jesus. This is the view that we should hold as Christ followers, especially at Christmas. There are four main ways the Bible speaks about Jesus.

1. Jesus is a child for us all who was the promised Messiah.

More than 700 years before Jesus was born Isaiah said this about Jesus.

Isaiah 9:6 – For a Child is born to us, a Son is given to us. The government will rest on His shoulders. And He will be called: Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Jesus was a child who was long waited for. There were over 300 prophecies about Him coming, what He would be like and what He would do. According to studies fulfilling just 16 of the prophecies about Christ in one person alone would be 1 in 10 with 45 zeros after it. That looks like this

10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.

But Jesus fulfilled them all.

2. Jesus came into the world to save us.

John 3:16-18 – “For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.  17 God sent His Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through Him.  18 “There is no judgment against anyone who believes in Him. But anyone who does not believe in Him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son.

Jesus came into the world because of His great love for us. He could not live in eternity without You. He came to save us.

3. Jesus is the one we can follow.

John 14:6 – Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Me.

Jesus is the way to salvation. Jesus is the truth among many different paths. Jesus is the way to the Father in heaven. Like the disciples by the lake, we can drop everything to follow Him. And we can trust He will lead us the right way.

4. Jesus is the King who is coming back for His own.

John 14:1-3 – “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in Me.  2 There is more than enough room in My Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?  3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with Me where I am.

A time is coming when the Father will call time of this earth. When He does, Jesus will come back for His own and He will take us to be with Him forever. As regulars here have heard me say many times – when we have been there for 10,000 years, we have only just begun.

Finding rest in Jesus this Christmas

This is a short article I wrote for our church newsletter for December. I thought I would share it on my blog too…

Finding rest in Jesus this Christmas

With Christmas fast approaching it can be easy to get caught up in the busyness that this time often brings. It is important at the end of a busy year to take some time to rest and slow down. One of the best ways I know is to find rest in Jesus.

Matthew 11:28-30 says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

At the heart of these verses is an invitation. An invitation to come to Jesus and an invitation to live differently. Here are three things I love about this passage.

  1. Jesus invites us to Himself – Jesus says, “Come to Me”. He invites everyone to come and get to know Him and spend time with Him. It is a personal invitation, but it is also to everyone. We see this in the “all who are weary”. It is an invitation to intimacy like He has with His Father.
  2. Jesus Invites us to take on His yoke – In old style farming a yoke was used to join two animals together. Side by side they would work, until the work was done. In this passage, Jesus invites us to partner in the work He is already doing in the world. It is easy to get caught up in doing all kinds of “good” things, but Jesus invites us to be involved in His work. To put on His yoke and join in.
  3. Jesus invites us to learn from Him – Jesus wants to teach us a different way to live. Jesus wants us to follow Him just like He asked the first disciples to follow Him. He promises that He will be gentle and teach us from a humble heart. I don’t know about you, but that is my kind of teacher.

And what is the great promise from this invitation? Rest. Jesus promises us that we WILL find rest for our weary souls. Jesus wants to give us the rest and peace that only comes from knowing Him.

As we draw closer to the end of the year, this is a great promise for us all.

God’s Richest Blessings,
Pastor Dave