Chapter 2 of Luke's Gospel is a very familiar part of the “Christmas Story,” as an Angel (probably Gabriel) announces the birth of the Son of God to a group of Jewish Shepherds outside of the city of Bethlehem.
The angel announces the birth of God's dear Son to very ordinary people and the amazing thing to me is that they understood the message and what had just happened in Bethlehem that night.
They didn't say, “Wow, we must have had too much to drink last night”.
No! They understood the announcement! They received the angel’s message and rose and did just as the angel instructed them to do.
Now in light of the fact that this is the account of the birth of the Son of God…I can understand the angels and the light and the glory. But I have a hard time understanding how these simple shepherds understood; how they gladly received the angel’s amazing announcement and eagerly set out to do what they were instructed to do.
They were not Priests or Theologians.
Think of it…this amazing, magnificent, glorious event happened…the birth of the Son of God…
And ordinary men…shepherds…know it…understand it….
Why did this announcement not perplex them, alarm them or shock them?
Could it be that they were expecting it?
These shepherds were reared as Jewish men. They had attended the synagogue and had been taught the promises of the Holy Scriptures and the words of their prophets. They knew the promises God had made to the fathers of Israel: to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and to King David:
- A seed, would possess the gates of His enemies,
- A Child would be born to them, a Son would be given,
- He would save His people from the kingdom of darkness
- He would give them the cities and nations of the earth, establish peace and justice, and fill the whole earth with His glory.
They had been taught to expect this to happen…and they believed it would happen. When it finally took place they understood the significance of what we call the "Christmas Season”.
WHAT were they expecting? WHAT was their great Christmas expectation?
WHAT should be our great Christmas expectation today…this Christmas season 20l0?
Just what did the prophets promise?
The greatest AUTHENTICATION of Christ is that what happened…is exactly what was expected.
There are three things I want you to see in this message:
First, a Savior was going to come. This was prophetic “code” for the Messiah, the King who would save and deliver them.
Second, Salvation would come to them just as God promised throughout the O.T..
Third, the Saints would rise up and possess the nations. Sinners would be transformed and become saints…sons and daughters of God and joint heirs with the Savior-King.
To watch this powerful faith-inspiring message click here.