A Christmas Story (Luke 2:1-20)
Luke 2:7 – “And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.”
We can learn some truths to live by, and model our lives by from the Christmas Story. The Christmas story is more than just a “story” it is an actual historical account of the birth of the Son of God. The truths we can learn from this account are numerous, we will just focus on a few.
The birth of the Son of God was a miraculous event that took place over 2,000 years ago in a small village in Israel named Bethlehem. There was no room for Joseph and Mary in the inn. Jesus was born and then placed in a manger. Shepherds were informed of His birth by a host of angels. They made haste to get to where the King was born. They boldly proclaimed the news of His birth in the surrounding area.
BIRTH PLACE OF BETHLEHEM (Luke 2:4-6 – And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.)
Bethlehem was a proper place for our Savior to be born because Bethlehem means “house of bread” and Jesus is the “bread of life”. (John 6:31-35 – Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.)
Christ is to our soul as bread is to our body. You cannot have a proper spiritual life without feeding each day on the Word of God. (John 1:1– In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. & Joshua 1:8 – This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein:)
Feasting on the word of God will nourish us spiritually. You have to feed your spirit like you feed your body. You should care for your spiritual life even more that you care for you physical life. (Matthew 4:4 – But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.)
It is God who gives us spiritual and eternal life. It is by the sacrifice of the “bread of life” that we have everlasting life with Him in Glory. (John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.)
God gives life to those who were dead in their sins. (Romans 8:12-14 – Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.) We are debtors to the “bread of life” form Bethlehem. Without His coming to Bethlehem, and being born to die on the cross for our sins, we would not have life. We would be doomed to stay dead in our sins.
BIRTH OF HUMBLE CIRCUMSTANCES (Luke 2:6-8 – And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.)
Jesus had a humble birth and humble beginnings. He was not born in a fancy house to rich parents. He was basically born in a barn and his first bed was a manger. He was not blessed materially growing up, He was from a poor family, the son of a carpenter.
We need to model ourselves after the humility Christ demonstrated with His life. Biblical humility is recognition that by ourselves we are inadequate and worthless. (I Corinthians 4:7 – For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?) But because we are created in the image of God we are valuable with infinite worth and dignity. A humble person sees himself as not deserving it, but being the recipient of God’s redeeming love, and regards himself as not being his own but God’s in Christ. (Ephesians 2:10 – For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.)
Jesus Christ was the only man that didn’t have to be humble. He was equal with God and sent by Him to earth. He had all knowledge and power available to Him. Yet He was the most supreme example of humbleness that has ever walked the earth. (Philippians 2:5-8 – Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.)
We need to model ourselves after the meekness and humbleness of Christ. Who though He was equal with God became the most humble man on earth. Do not think so highly of yourself that you look down on others. We are all created by God in His image. God made man from the dust of the ground. Do not let yourself become proud but seek to live a life of humility in Christ.
BABE WORSHIPED IN A MANGER (Luke 2:8-16 ) We need to worship our Lord. Demonstrate your thankfulness and love to the Lord that saved you from your sins. Worship Him in the morning when you read your Bible and pray. Worship and praise His majesty and works you see all around you. Give Him praise for the great things He has done in your life. Let others know around you how much you love your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (Psalm 7:17 – I will praise the LORD according to his righteousness: and will sing praise to the name of the LORD most high.)
The shepherds heard the good news of Christ and had a desire to get closer to Him. When we hear of Christ’s love, and read of His love and what He has done for us, it should make us want to get closer to Him. When you know someone loves you and you love them back you want to be close to them and spend time with them. (I John 2:3-6 – And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.)
The shepherds did not hesitate to get closer to the Lord. The Bible says “they came with haste”. Are we that way when it comes to the things of God? Do we “make haste” for the chance to get in His word, and read and meditate on His word? Do we “make haste” in our efforts to go to church? Do we “make haste” in our efforts to serve the Lord with our lives and do what His will is for us? Do you “make haste” for Christ? (Hebrews 12:1-2 – Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.)
BROADCASTING THE GOOD NEWS OF JESUS (Luke 2:17-20 – And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.) The shepherds after they heard the news of the Lord and sought to find Him and then worship Him they broadcast the good news of Jesus to all those around them. (Luke 2:17 – And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.)
The shepherds were willing and excited witnesses for Christ. Are you witnessing for Christ to all those around you like the shepherds did? Are you sharing the good news of Jesus Christ to everyone you can? The Lord Jesus not only expects us to be so excited about Him that we witness to those around us, but He commands us to do it, and not only to those around us but to the whole world. (Matthew 28:18-20 – And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.)
We need to Plan to witness for Christ don’t just expect it will happen. Plan out a time to witness for Him each week. (Proverbs 29:18a – Where there is no vision, the people perish:)
We need to Prepare for spontaneous times of witnessing for Christ. (I Peter 3:15 – …be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:)
We need to be Persistent in our efforts to win souls for Christ. If the first time you share your faith with a friend they don’t get saved. Don’t get discouraged. Keep at it. Keep trying, keep praying for them, don’t give up. (I Corinthians 15:58 – … be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.)
We need to be Praying about witnessing to those around us. Don’t expect results unless you have been praying for them first. (Philippians 4:6 – Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.)
The shepherds shared the good news of Christ to those around them. They did not hesitate to share the good news of Christ. They were excited witnesses for Him. Jesus expects and commands us to be witnesses for Him as well. In our witnessing efforts we need to be planning out when we will go. We need to be prepared to be spontaneous and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes His schedule is not our schedule. We need to be persistent in our efforts and not give up. Finally and most importantly we need to be praying about opportunities to witness for the Lord. (I Timothy 2:4 – Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.)
IN CONCLUSION: We learned about the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We learned of His birthplace in Bethlehem. We saw how Bethlehem means “house of bread” and how this was a proper place for the birth of the “bread of life”. For He gives us the spiritual nourishment we need in our lives. We learned of His humble birth and beginnings. How we was not blessed materially and how that does not really matter. What matters is the spiritual.
We need to learn to model Christ’s example of humility in our lives. If we could learn to be humble like Him we could learn to serve Him more. Christ came down from heaven and humbled Himself to be born among us to die for us. He was born to die for our sins! (Hebrews 2:9-10 –But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.).
God chose to give His only Son as a sacrifice for our sins. The greatest gift ever given was the gift that God gave over 2,000 years ago. God gave His only begotten Son, so that we might have life and have it more abundantly! Christ humbled Himself to become the sacrifice for our sins because He loved us. We need to worship Christ. Show Him the honor and respect He should have. Worship Him with song, praise and how you live your life for Him. And always be willing and looking for ways to share the message of Christ with others around us.