The best diagnosis of Christmas was given by a doctor over 1900 years ago. The doctor is Luke. His diagnosis is found in the second chapter of his inspired record, known to us as the Gospel according to Luke. In the 11th verse we have the Message: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” This is one of favorite verses of the Bible. Luke is so clear in his diagnosis. It is personal, present and of course precious. May I share some thoughts with you from this wonderful verse in Luke chapter two? I would like to take the separate phrases from verse eleven for our diagnosis.
…This Day… THE TIME
This day had been a long time in coming, but it is certainly on time. Galatians 4:4 states, “But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem…” However, this time line started in Genesis 3:15 and continued when God called Abram and made an everlasting covenant with him. God established a nation through which Christ came according to Galatians 4:4 when time was full. On this very day of Luke 2:11 was the day that God fulfilled his promise and prophecy of Genesis 3:15. John 8:56 says, “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.”
…In the City of David…THE PLACE
Not only was Christ on time when coming into this world, but he came to the very place that God’s Word had prophesied to us. According to Micah, who wrote 700 years before Christ came, “Micah 5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he (Jesus) come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.” (See Luke 2:4-7)
…Is Born…THE VEHICLE
Now Luke rejoices that Christ is born. Someone rightly stated that Christ was the only person who chose to be born. What a thought! Why? Christ came, as is stated in the Gospel of John chapter one, to become flesh. John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us… We call this the incarnation, “the word became flesh… Matthew 1:23 says this, “…and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.”
…The Savior…THE GIFT
Why did He choose to come at this time into this place? He came as Matthew 1:21 states, “…thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.” 2 Corinthians 9:15, “Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.” “The gift of God is eternal life.” Christ came to be our Savior and to pay our sin debt that we may have this free gift of eternal life. This gift is unspeakable, unlimited and unforgettable. We must all realize that the Savior,,,the Gift… is either accepted or rejected by each of us.
…For unto you…WHOSOEVER
All this is possible for us, for me, for you and for whosoever. This wonderful verse in Luke 2:11 is so great because it is given to show us that Christ came on time to the right location as the God man to pay our debt and provide this wonderful gift of salvation to whosoever would accept Him.
This wonderful truth is the Joy of Christmas.
Our Christmas Cantata church-wide outreach will continue Monday (12/8) through Wednesday (12/10). We will meet in the lower parking lot at 6:30 where we will board buses and head into our community to invite our neighbors to our Christmas Cantata this weekend. For questions or more information, please contact Associate Pastor Northcutt (461-5561 Ext 137 or email email@example.com)
There will be a Children’s Christmas Program rehearsal on Monday (12/8) in the Main Auditorium at 7 p.m. All children participating in the program are encouraged to attend. For questions or more information, contact Associate Pastor Jordan (461-5561 Ext 113 or email firstname.lastname@example.org).
We will have multiple opportunities to reach out in to our community to pass out invitations to our Christmas Cantata this week.
On Friday (12/5) and Saturday (12/6), there will be a bus heading to Balboa Park to pass out tracts at the annual “December Nights” festival. The bus will leave from the lower parking at 8 p.m. on Friday and 2 p.m. on Saturday.
Also, on Saturday (12/6) we’ll meet at 9:30 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall where we will meet and head out to our Military Base Housing communities to invite our military neighbors.
For questions or more information, contact Pastor Scott Northcutt (461-5561 Ext 137 or email email@example.com).
In preparation for our Christmas Cantata, we will have a church-wide work day on Saturday, December 6th at 9 am. All major ministries have been assigned areas of responsibility so see your ministry leader to see how you can help. If you are new to the church or don’t know where to help, please see Brother Russ Prock (461-5561 Ext 115 or email firstname.lastname@example.org).
If you are new to Lighthouse Baptist Church, please plan on joining us for a New Visitor’s Reception following the morning service (11/30) in room 203 (next to Bookstore). This a great opportunity to meet the Pastoral Staff and ministry leaders and get a better understanding of ministries & services that our church provides. A light lunch will be provided. For questions or more information, please contact Associate Pastors Scott Northcutt (461-5561 Ext 137 or email email@example.com).
There will be a Teen Momentum Activity on Sunday (11/23) following the evening service in the Fellowship Hall. The cost is $2. For questions or more information, please contact Youth Pastor Kirk Harrell (461-5561 Ext 136 or email firstname.lastname@example.org)
There will be a work-day on Saturday (11/22) at 9:30 to decorate the church property with Christmas decorations. For questions or more information, please contact Brother Russ Prock (461-5561 Ext 115 or email email@example.com)
In observance of Veteran’s Day, the Lighthouse Christian Academy will not have school on November 10th.
These were the words of the Lord Jesus Christ. This is the question of our Savior to the crowd at the happening of His cleansing of the ten lepers. When one reads and studies these nine verses in Luke 17:11-19 one comes away with mixed emotions. What a story that is much, much larger than these nine verses. It is a story that one never seems to forget but many lingering thought remain. I try when reading great passages such as this one to place myself in the setting and surroundings. One begins to see the people, the sights and sound and of course the things that seems to transpire so quickly but seem to linger so long. Especially after one see the miracle of Luke 17 and Jesus seemingly was required to ask this question that seems to ring out so loudly and hauntingly, “Were there not ten cleansed?” With a deeper penetration of this short story of only 9 verses one is even more taken-a-back. Jesus told them to go show themselves to the priest. Remember the priest would no doubt be a Jewish priest. However, the only one who came back to thank Jesus was a “stranger”. He was a Samaritan.
Yes, we are once again approaching the season we call THANKSGIVING. Thanksgiving has been a part of our nation since its beginning. There are many stories that surround its beginnings and its evolution. But one thing has been certain that it has remained. Of course we can speak of the negatives and positives of this wonderful Day/season. However, we as Christians must never forget to be thankful.
The word Thanks in one form or another is found some 140 times in our Bible. David probably used it more times than any other Bible character. But there are many, many clear examples both negative and positive. Sometimes the negative truths are more teachable than the positive. Just one Old Testament example is very potent. Remember Joseph in prison in Genesis 40:23? “Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgot him.” But forgot him, what a sad story related here. However how often could this be said of us, “but forgot”? Just like the ten lepers and the chief butler how often are we guilty of not being thankful? The word that goes with this happening is the word “ingratitude”. Ingratitude is the negative of Thanksgiving. But what is ingratitude? Ingratitude is a sin. Yes, read Romans 1:21 here Paul reminds us that men, ”glorified him not as God, neither were thankful.” In other words Paul was saying in the context of this passage that they were heathens. Ingratitude is also robbery. These nine other unthankful lepers were robbing the God of heaven his honor and praise and expressing their ingratitude. We can have thankfulness yet fail to have gratitude. How? Don’t you think that the nine lepers were thankful for their cleansing? When one reads the picture of a leper and the social discrimination heaped upon him one can’t imagine that there were no expressions of thanksgiving. However it was a selfish thanksgiving because it was filled with ingratitude. Maybe we need to realize that we can enter this season of “Thanksgiving” and be thankful but is a selfish way.
Look up some Scriptures surrounding the word ingratitude and see what God really thinks about this word and it conations. We may be amazed at the nine lepers who went their way. Think about it.
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