Who was the Baby in the Manger?
Intro: Joshua Bell emerged from the Metro and positioned himself against a wall beside a trash basket. By most measures, he was nondescript—a youngish white man in jeans, a long-sleeved T-shirt, and a Washington Nationals baseball cap. From a small case, he removed a violin. Placing the open case at his feet, he shrewdly threw in a few dollars and pocket change as seed money and began to play.
For the next 45 minutes, in the D.C. Metro on January 12, 2007, Bell played Mozart and Schubert as over 1,000 people streamed by, most hardly taking notice. If they had paid attention, they might have recognized the young man for the world-renowned violinist he is. They also might have noted the violin he played—a rare Stradivarius worth over $3 million. It was all part of a project arranged by The Washington Post—"an experiment in context, perception, and priorities—as well as an unblinking assessment of public taste. In a banal setting, at an inconvenient time, would beauty transcend?"
Just three days earlier, Joshua Bell sold out Boston Symphony Hall, with ordinary seats going for $100. In the subway, Bell garnered about $32 from the 27 people who stopped long enough to give a donation.
The majority of people are too busy with “life” as they know it to allow the beauty of a thing transcend their schedule! So it was with the Savior of the World-Jesus Christ. Born in a manger because there was no room for Him! The majority of those in his day are no different than the majority in our day! They didn’t recognize God!
“But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name. ” (John 20:31)
I. Understand the Person of Christmas
Illustration – Girl drawing a picture in class drew God. The teacher told her: “No one knows what God looks like.” “They will when I get through,” She explained!
Note – Do we really know who the baby in the manger was? Some say he was a good teacher; some say he was a good man; some say he was a prophet of God; some say he was a delusional liar and deceiver.
a. He was God, the Eternal Son
Note – The Word (logos=wisdom; expression of word or thought) is Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God!
Joh 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
He was before all creation. Therefore is not a created angel or being inferior to God. He was distinct from the Father, yet one with Him! This is a great mystery to us, but true nonetheless!
Joh 17:5 And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
Col 1:17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
He did not become the only begotten Son of God at birth. He has always been the begotten of the Father, co-equal, co-powerful, co-eternal!
Joh 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
b. He was God, the Creator
Joh 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
Ps 148:5 Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created.
Heb 1:10 And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:
c. He was God, the Savior (Light & Life of Men)
Note – Jesus Christ alone is the fountain or source of all spiritual life to the souls of men.
Ps 36:9 For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.
1Jo 5:11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
Joh 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
II. Understand the Purpose of Christmas
Note – He came to shine light in the darkness. He came to reveal Truth and Save Sinners!
Joh 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.
Joh 1:9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.
Mt 4:16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.
Eph 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
Eph 5:14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.
Lu 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
III. Understand the Power of Christmas
Note – The Begotton Son of God gave the ability to become the sons of God by adoption!
Ga 4:4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,
5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
Ro 1:14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.
15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Conclusion: Christmas is not about the money you have spent; it’s not the tree you decorated; it’s not the parties you’ve attended. Christmas for the Christian is about our Relationship with God!