Have You Heard it All Before?
In the busy world we live in, and in the politically correct culture of the Western world, it’s very possible to be completely unaware of the ‘reason for the season’ and to miss out on the Advent message that the King is coming. In Luke’s gospel the angels announce to the shepherds that there is good news on the way, and that it is good news for everyone. The baby born in Bethlehem is to be the savior, Jesus, Light of the World. Here is one reason why people miss that great news today. Be sure you don’t do the same!
Read Matthew 2.1-6
How many times do you think you have heard the Christmas story? How many times have you sat in a Christmas carol concert or listened to the Third Day ‘Christmas Offerings’ album?
There’s probably not much in the message of Christmas that you haven’t heard, or you don’t know! But sometimes familiarity can breed contempt, and there are 2 particular groups in the nativity story who miss out because they think they know it all.
First, the chief priests and the scribes – who knew all the scriptural promises and prophecies about a Messiah- didn’t even bother to go explore Bethlehem or the story the wise men brought, because they were too complacent, or too arrogant, or too religious, and missed out on the Savior.
Second, when the infant Jesus returned to Nazareth, the townsfolk there--who must have known Mary and Joseph, lived alongside Jesus for the next 30 years without recognizing his destiny. In fact, even during the ministry of Jesus folk from his town and his wider family, were cynical about his identity and his divinity.
This year, allow yourself to approach the Christmas story with fresh eyes, as if you are hearing it for the first time, and wonder at the miracle and majesty of the Son of God, born in a humble stable and visited by shepherds.
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