Volume. XXV, No. 26
Sunday, 26 December 2010


What is Christmas all about?


Introduction:

Christmas is about the Almighty Creator of the universe who is not Himself part of the creation, moving himself, in the Person of His Son, into the universe that He made. And what makes this fact even more amazing is that this created universe—the personal part of it, the moral part of it—is in rebellion against its holy, loving and merciful Maker, and yet He came into the universe that He made in order to save those who are in active rebellion against Him. What is Christmas all about? One of the remarkable statements and answers in all the Scriptures is 1 Timothy 1:15, “…Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners…” Henceforth, Christmas is about something God initiated—something God did in the history of mankind. It has to do with the way the created universe relates to the one Being who is absolute—no beginning and no ending, self-sustaining, no changing—He simply is who He is. In fact, God says in Exodus 3:14 that his name is “I am that I am.” Christmas is about how this great this Creator God relates to us and how we relate to Him. In fact, the gospel of Luke 1:26-38, where the Christmas account is recorded, tells us how this absolute God broke into his creation to save sinners.

How did the Creator of the universe break into His Universe?

By Performing the Impossible

Luke 1:37, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” Archangel of God, Gabriel, gives Mary the bottom line answer for how the Creator of universe can become man in the womb of a virgin. When all our objections have spent themselves, this truth remains: “With God nothing shall be impossible.” God had been preparing the world for this impossibility for thousands of years. Listen to the testimonies: Genesis 18:14, “Is any thing too hard for the LORD?...Job 42:2, “I know that thou canst do every thing, and that no thought can be withholden from thee.Jeremiah 32:17, “…behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee.” And the time has come for the most impossible thing to be done: God enters his creation as part of it, and without ceasing to be the uncreated God.

By Choosing to Enter Through a Virgin

In Luke 1:26-27 Luke says, “…the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin …” The angel says to her in verse 31, “And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.” And Mary responds in verse 34, “…How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?” In other words, Mary is saying, “I am only betrothed, but I am not married. My marriage with Joseph is not been consummated yet.” Yet, this was God’s choice. An angel sent from God to a virgin. God’s way of breaking into the universe was that He would be conceived in the womb of a virgin. We should not surmise very far from the text why God did it this way. The clearest answer is in verse 35, “….The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” God chose to be conceived in the womb of a virgin so that the fatherhood of this Holy Child would be absolutely unique—He is the Son of God, not the son of Joseph. He has a Divine Father, not a biological human father. He is therefore Divine as the Son of God, and a sinless human as Mary’s son, not Joseph’s son. God chose to break into the universe by choosing to enter through a virgin.

By choosing for his Son a legal human father who would be an heir of David, the king of Israel

Luke 1:27, “…a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David…” For two thousand years, since the days of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, God had been preparing for this moment in history. Promise after promise had pointed to the day when a son of David would come, a king, an heir to the throne. Prophet Isaiah said, “And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.” (Isa 11:10). And at the end of the Bible in the book of Revelation (22:16), Jesus waves his ensign or banner over all of history with the words, “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.

The Creator of the universe broke into the universe not as a generic human being, but as a Jew, in fulfillment of 2000 years of covenant promises so that Israel would glorify God for his truthfulness and all the nations would glorify God for his mercy. He came as the Son of David and as the Son of God—a Jew to vindicate every promise, and a man to identify with every nation!

By Sending His Holy Ghost with Divine Power to Impregnate the Virgin

Mary asks in Luke 1:34, “How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?  And the next verse (Luke 1:35) must be one of the most important statements that has ever been made in any book in all of history. You ask “How,” Mary? Here’s how: “The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” God himself, the Holy Spirit, with miraculous working power—the power of the Most High—will take the place of a human father, and under the shadow of His wing Mary will become pregnant with the Son of God in a way most Pure, Virtuous, Holy, Unseen, Mysterious!

Conclusion:

That is what Luke tells us what Christmas is all about. The Creator of the universe broke into the universe by doing the impossible, by choosing to enter the universe through a virgin, by choosing a legal human father who would be an heir of David, the king of Israel, by sending his Holy Spirit with divine power to impregnate the Virgin Mary with a divine child.

Dear friends, would you come to Jesus Christ who came into this world some two thousands years ago and trust Him as your Lord and Saviour this Christmas?

Ps Weng

 


More Lively Hope

 

Announcements

Announcements
*Kitchen Rosters: Team Leader: Bro Phil Surman. Next Lord’s Day: Team Leader:  Sis Suzane Lim.
*Hope Bookstore - open 12:30 - 1:30pm. Books & cards are for sale.
*RPG for next QTR available. Donation: $1 per copy.
*Please note: There is no Fellowship Lunch after Worship Service TODAY. Only “Coffee & Cookies”.
*Flower Roster - volunteers still needed to be on roster to bring flowers for Worship Service 2011. Please place your name on the roster sheet on the notice board in the foyer.
*Next Year’s Theme will be “Dedicated to Christ” (Luke 9:23).
*For Watchnight Service - please come and share what the LORD has done for you in the past year.
*Christmas Greetings to all Hopefuls from Sis Irena Kurek-Braden (Pt Macquarie).

Looking Ahead
*Batam Missions 20-23 Jan 2011
*YAF Adelaide Uni Orientation Week - Feb 2011.
*YAF Welcome Evening - Feb 2011.

Praise & Thanksgiving
1. Journey mercies: Rev George van Buuren; Bro Colin & Sis Kathleen Creaser; Bro Phil & Sis Iris Surman; Sisters Ethel Chung, Sally Teng & family; Mrs Amy Ang (Adl); Dn Wai Kin Wong & family (Melb); Bros Victor & Daniel Kour (Melb); Sisters Xiao Hui Chye (KL), Daphne Lai (HK), Gillian Ong, Maybelline Tan (S’pore); & others who have arrived safely at their destinations.
2. Our Lord Jesus Christ - for His redemptive work.
3. Church activities - over the past week.
4. Daily mercies & guidance in our lives.
5. God’s care & protection - Sis Ethel Chung while away in Whyalla.
6. Session Meeting last Lord’s Day.

Prayer Items
1. Health & God’s healing - Dr Gary Cohen (USA), Dr SH Tow; Rev & Mrs James White; Preacher Zhang, Dn Yaw Chiew Tan; Bros Colin Creaser; Makoto Kobayashi (JPN), Elton Law, Jonathan Liao (Melb), & Len Pearson; Mr Swee Liang Ng; Grandpa Ki (S’pore); Auntie Oei; Sisters Lynette Booth, Mabella Booth, Annie D’Mello & her mother (Mumbai), Lydia Fan, Myung Ki, Choon Fong Lee (KL), Nan van Buuren; Gillian Ong, Lehia Paauwe, Margaret Pearson, Julie Tan, Susan Veradi, Irena Kurek-Braden; & others in affliction.
2. Cambodia Missions - Khmer Pastors & families .
3. iSketch&Tell Studio - Pr H S Lim & his ministry.
4. IBPFM (USA) - Rev K Coleman, Board & Missionaries around the world.
5. Ministry in London - Ps & Sis Ki.
6. Presbyterian Missionary Union - Missionaries.
7. Ps & Sis  Weng - ministry in Hope BPC.
8. Hopefuls in S’pore; In Kuching: Teo family.
9. Journey mercies: Dn Wai Kin & Sis Mavis Wong & family (Adl); & those who are travelling.
10. Job - Sisters Judy Li & Corinne Teng. Jobs for our uni graduates next year.
11. Good health in pregnancy - Sis Myra Horenung (Mindanao).
12. Church Finance - God’s provision of funds.
13. Interpreters of sermon into Mandarin.
14. God’s comfort - those still in grief.
15. Batam Missions - for organisers & team  members; for safety & protection; & for fruitful ministry. Restrain on the Moslem extremists & protection of believers.
16. Hopefuls & worshippers away at this time of the year. For safety & protection.
17. Dn Christanto & Sis Jenni Budiman & family as they prepare to leave Adelaide permanently for Perth; & Bro John & Sis Josephine Wong & family to Melbourne for three years. 

 

 

© Hope Bible-Presbyterian Church
PO Box 398, Fullarton, Adelaide, South Australia 5063