161225 John 1:14

Last Updated on Thursday, 29 December 2016 Written by Pastor Schmidt

Sermon Text: John 1:14

Sermon Theme: Focus on Christ This Christmas!

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

There are far too many people in our world today who don't know what Christmas is all about. For them, Christmas is about finding the perfect tree and decorating the house. Christmas is about of the best outdoor display of lights in the neighborhood. Christmas is about Santa. Christmas is about presents. Christmas is about getting together with family and friends who you haven't seen for awhile. Christmas is about having time off from school, and sleeping in every morning. While all these things are part of Christmas in our world today, you and I know there is so much more for us to celebrate today. As we gather together this morning, together you and I FOCUS ON CHRIST THIS CHRISTMAS.

On Christmas Day, as we focus on Christ, you and I celebrate that God's one and only Son took on human flesh. This is difficult for our small minds to understand completely. Your human reason and mine would tell us that Jesus was simply a special man, who lived such a great life that he became "a son" of God. But John does away with that line of thinking when he writes earlier in chapter 1, "In the beginning was the Word [Jesus], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning." And in the verse before us we read about the Word, Jesus, "We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." The Gospel writer John was an eyewitness of the fact that Jesus is true God, who has taken on human flesh.

One of the major teachings found in the Bible is the fact that the baby born in Bethlehem is not just another human child. He is the Son of God, the second person of the Trinity. But is this really such an important point that we should spend so much time talking about it? Well, let's think about that for a moment. How does your sinful, human reason tell you that you can get to heaven? My prideful human reason, like yours, tells me that there is something I can do to win my way into heaven.

Now let's look at that reasoning in light of God's Word. The Bible clearly teaches that you and I are sinful from the time we are conceived in the wombs of our mothers. Each one of us confessed moments ago that we have sinned against our God by the sinful words we speak, by the sinful things we do and by the sinful thoughts that fill our minds.

When it comes to being saved, when it comes to being forgiven and living forever in heaven, you and I need to focus on Christ. The Bible makes it so clear that there is absolutely no way you and I are able to get ourselves into heaven. So, in his great love for you and me, God the Father took action. He sent his One and Only Son, Jesus Christ to be our substitute. Jesus took on human flesh. In our place, the baby born in Bethlehem grew and lived the perfect life you and I will never be able to live. Our loving Lord willingly offered up his perfect life as the full payment price for all your sins and all my sins. Because Jesus rose again on Easter Sunday, because the Holy Spirit has used his Word to put faith in your heart and mine so that you and I believe in Jesus as our one and only Savior, you and I are given the credit for the perfect life he lived. Through the God-Man, Jesus Christ, you and I enjoy the forgiveness of all sins. On this Christmas Morning, as we focus on Christ, you and I rejoice in the Good News that Jesus Christ, your substitute and mine, is true God and also true Man.

There are many people today who hear the birth of Jesus at Christmas as just another "story" that is told at this time of year. It is important for you and me to remember that the only way anyone is saved is if they know that Jesus is their one and only Savior. Each and every one of us here this morning knows of someone who needs to hear the message of God's Word: his Law and Gospel. I am sure you are able to think of someone you know who needs to hear about their need for a Savior, and how the gracious Lord gave us the gift of that Savior at Christmas, in the God-Man, our Lord Jesus Christ. My prayer is that each one of us leaves here today, empowered by the Word of God that we have heard, to FOCUS ON CHRIST THIS CHRISTMAS and then go and share the wonderful Good News with others: "Today, in the town of David, a Savior has been born: he is Christ, the Lord." Amen.

 

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Compelled by the love of Christ, St. Matthew’s Evangelical Lutheran Church and School seek to reach out to our families, community and world, using Law and Gospel to make disciples, growing and nurturing them in their Christian faith and life.

 

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Oconomowoc, WI 53066
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