The Miracle of the Method

12-19-16
Monday
 
 
As we start another week we will be looking at the method of Christmas and the miraculous nature of the incarnation story. Everyone has heard the phrase “there is a method to the madness” and that can be applied to the Christmas story. We can ask the question, “If God were to become man how would he accomplish it?” And the answer of the Christmas Story doesn’t make any sense to the world. Certainly the geniuses of the marketing world could have come up with a better plan?
 
 
1 Corinthians 1:19
For it is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.” 20 Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe.
 
 
Paul says the message of the gospel seems like folly to the world. But the message changes lives and the method God uses requires that we humble ourselves before God and submit to his will and not our own.
 
 
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. Psalms 51:17
 
 
Are there some things God is doing in your life that you don’t understand? Most of the things God is doing we don’t understand. But don’t worry, that is God’s method. His ways are not our ways… but we can humble ourselves before him and let him be God. We can trust him with our lives because he is trustworthy.
 
 
God was at work in the Christmas story to bring Christ into the world and he is at work today forming Christ in us. And whatever method he uses, one day we will see that it was perfect.
 
 
Prayer: Give me the grace and patience to let you do your work in me.


An Eternal Message

12-18-16
Sunday
 
 
As we prepare for church this morning there is one thing I want to remind us of: The message of Christmas is eternal. The son of God became man… and he will always be man. He is the God-Man and will live with us and rule the eternal kingdom forever.
 
 
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.” – Isaiah 9:6-7
 
 
The message of Christmas is that God became man so that he might redeem us from sin and restore us to fellowship with God by paying the penalty for our sin on the cross. He was born for this purpose and he fulfilled it in actual time and space, recorded in the annals of history and forever and ever we will be praising God for his eternal plan.
 
 
And the things that are waiting for us are beyond our comprehension.
 
 
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.   Romans 8:18-21
 
 
Prayer: May I live with an awareness of the redemption… what it cost God and what it accomplished for us now and forever.


A Hopeful Message

12-17-16
Saturday
 
 
The message of Christmas is a message of hope.
If you think about it, it’s entirely appropriate for Jesus Christ, who is the hope of the world, to have come in the form of an infant, because babies are hope personified. They are pure potential. Their lives are all in the future. Is there a mother or father who hasn’t looked into the face of their newborn baby and wondered, “What will this little child accomplish, what will he become? A doctor saving lives, a lawyer pursuing justice, an engineer; painter, ballerina, astronaut, college professor, athlete, research scientist. . . anything is possible.
 
 
But Mary had even more than the usual maternal pride to justify having great hope for her son. The previous year, she had been visited by an angel, Gabriel, who gave her this promise:
 
 
“You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.” – Luke 1:31-33
 
 
This promise to Mary echoed the prophecy of Isaiah, given seven centuries earlier:
 
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.” – Isaiah 9:6-7
 
 
And to Joseph the angel said:
 
She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” – Matthew 1:21
 
 
The hope of nations is also the hope of all people. He is the hope of world peace and justice and he is the hope for all who are far from God because of their sin. He was sent to save us from our sins.
 
 
Our soul waits for the LORD; he is our help and our shield. For our heart is glad in him, because we trust in his holy name. Let your steadfast love, O LORD, be upon us, even as we hope in you. – Psalms 33:20-22
Prayer: My hope has become my salvation and my friend.



Daily Devotionals based on Current Series