TEACHER: Ken Hicks
SCRIPTURES: Luke 1:1-4; 26-38; Luke 2:1-14
BOTTOM LINE: If we believe the story of Jesus is TRUE, how does that impact how we navigate the CHRISTmas season?
QUESTION: Do people around us see the TRUTH of the CHRISTmas story lived out in our lives during the Holidays?
Let me just ask … how many of you guys remember how awesome CHRISTmas was as a kid? It was incredible wasn’t it?
Now … as adults … we still like CHRISTmas … and we enjoy parts of it for sure … but it’s different now isn’t it? CHRISTmas for most of us [if we were to be straight up honest] … almost includes a certain amount of anxiety and dread doesn’t it?
CHRISTmas is complicated … but it doesn’t have to be, and in fact, maybe it shouldn’t be?
The CHRISTmas story is one of the most well-known narratives in history. People all over the world in fact, for centuries, have read it, heard it, written about it … and yes, even preached about it. Almost everyone knows the story of CHRISTmas. Yet, some still truly feel like the CHRISTmas story is more of a Legend or Fairy Tale.
And what Luke has to say just may change our whole view about the Myth or Reality of the story of CHRSITmas … and this text is so important it just might change our opinion of the entire NT …
Because when I read … It just doesn’t sound like a Myth or a Fairy Tale to me … now … the traditional CHRISTmas story begins in Luke 2 … at least the part most of us are familiar with … but we’re going to back up a chapter today.
Luke was a doctor … and he became a Follower of Jesus … and he believed in Jesus’ teachings … and Luke had a friend named Theophilus who was also a Christian … and maybe like some people we know … Theophilus had some knowledge of the life of Jesus, but it was sort of pieced together from lots of different places … and so he asked Luke … Hey bro, can you just start from the beginning and tell me everything you know about Jesus?
So Luke sits down w/ all his research and material … and all that is weaved together w/ his own personal knowledge and experience … and he began writing his story of the life of Jesus … so let’s check this out.
Like any good investigator … Luke is taking eyewitness accounts … and Luke and Peter had a relationship … he had spent a lot of time traveling w/ Paul and he was writing this stuff down while these eyewitnesses were still walking around.
This wasn’t 200 years later … Luke probably had sat down w/ Mary and asked her to share her story … he knew the Disciples … so when he says many people have set out to write accounts about the events that have happened, we can be completely confident that Luke had access to those people.
He wasn’t some historian writing about something that happened 100’s or 1000’s of years before. Luke was a contemporary, a friend of the people who actually lived the story.
So here’s a guy … who’s the only Non-Jewish writer in the entire NT … he’s a doctor and a really smart guy … and honestly, he has NOTHING to gain by what he’s writing … and yet he’s going to do his due diligence here and comprise a careful account … just doesn’t sound like a guy here who’s going to just write some sort of Myth or Fair Tale.
Having carefully investigated everything, I’m going to write this so you can know the TRUTH … the SIMPLE TRUTH.
Don’t miss this today … Christianity isn’t just believing in some story or Legend or Fairy Tale … It’s not blind faith that just believes in some ideas or even teachings to be honest.
Christianity is based on something that actually happened … our Faith is based on historical events.
That doesn’t sound like a Fairy Tale does it? I mean Luke doesn’t start w/ Once upon a time, there was a King in a land far, far away … to which we might say What Land? To which the writer says, doesn’t matter, because it’s just a Fairy Tale.
So … when we pick up the Bible and opening it up to the beginning of the NT, we’ve got 4 historical ancient manuscripts written by 4 different men who were recording not just a story, but actual events they experienced … witnessed and recorded.
And they did this long before Jesus really became famous … or Christianity was trendy or cool … These guys weren’t paid to write this … as a matter of fact, every single one of the Gospel writers were eventually KILLED for what they believed to be true.
And again … someone may be willing to die for what they are firmly in belief of something is true … but how many people do you know that would die for a LIE?
This is the reason that gives purpose to our entire lives … and specifically the next 4 weeks specifically. Many around us will be going thru the motions … truth is, they enjoy much of the CHRISTmas season.
- Who doesn’t like giving and receiving Gifts … especially receiving right?
- Who doesn’t like gathering w/ friends for parties
- Who doesn’t like a CHRISTmas bonus
- Who doesn’t like good food?
- Who doesn’t like the smells of CHRISTmas and the Holiday cheer, and CHRISTmas music?
My challenge for myself is the same thing I would challenge all of us with … is JESUS the reason for this season? Is His Story True? And if we believe that … then how will that shape how we live these next 4 weeks specifically?