Christmas Reflections

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Excerpt And the Word became 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 (John 1:14, KJV). Continue reading

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Articles with Christmas related material for your reading enjoyment:

The Star of Bethlehem  Many possibilities have been suggested to explain the astronomical phenomena known as the "Star of Bethlehem" as recorded in Matthew 2:1-12 . Is there a scientific explanation for this "Star of Wonder" that remains true to the Scriptural account?

BLOODLINE: Serious Documentary or Hollywood Hoax? Incontrovertible proof to refute Christianity?

The Manger and the Inn Our understanding of the events surrounding the birth of Jesus are usually formed by our exposure to the traditional Christmas story. Upon further examination of the Biblical references, archaeological evidence and 1st century cultural context, the details surrounding Jesus' birth may be quite different than we have traditionally thought...

Incomprehensible As the pages of redemptive history unfold, they reach a culmination in the early pages of the Gospels, at the birth of Jesus Christ, the mysterious incarnation of the Lord of Glory...

Away In a Manger But Not In a Barn We all know the Christmas story…or do we? I would like to suggest a slightly different view on the subject, based on a careful reading of the Biblical text and insights from archaeology...

Oh Little Town of Bethlehem  During the Christmas season, we are inundated with images of Bethlehem from Christmas cards or Sunday School material that depicts somebody's imagination of what Bethlehem looked like 2,000 years ago. Some Christmas cards...

Mary's Magnificat: The Mercy of God I would like to tell you a story that is true. I am not making it up...

Who Is Immanuel? The Incarnation is at the heart of the Christmas message. The Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy, “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh” (1 Tm 3:16).

The Angelic Proclamation to the Shepherds I would like to draw back the curtains on the Drama of World Redemption and take a peek at what was going on behind the scenes during the second half of the first century BC.  I will also consider the events leading up to the birth of the Lord Jesus and the announcement of that birth by the angels to the shepherds in the fields surrounding Bethlehem.

A Brief Comment on the Census in Luke 2 The issue of the Luke 2 census has been debated for decades, but there are solutions to the apparent Bible problem...

Jesus Celebrates Hanukkah! Hanukkah is a Jewish festival that commemorates the purification and rededication of the Temple by Judas Maccabeus on Kislev 25, 165 BC (usually in December). Three years prior, Antiochus IV, the Seleucid (Syrian) king, defiled the Temple by erecting an idol to Baal Shamen (the Canaanite counterpart for the Greek god Zeus), sacrificing a pig on the altar in the Temple and proclaiming himself to be a god...

Once More: Quirinius's Census For those of us with a high view of Scripture, the fact that Luke’s record is indeed part of Scripture suggests that conclusions that claim the Bible is in error are not only premature but are, in the end, simply wrong. Further evidence will only demonstrate this more conclusively...

The Slaughter of the Innocents: Historical Fact or Legendary Fiction? In the December 2008 issue of National Geographic there was a well illustrated article on the recent excavations at the Herodian. This was the final burial place of Herod the Great, located 5 ½ kilometers southeast of Bethlehem as the angels fly. In the article, the author made this bold statement, reflecting current historical and theological understanding: “Herod is best known for slaughtering every male infant in Bethlehem in an attempt to kill Jesus. He is almost certainly innocent of this crime” (Mueller 2008:42). Was Herod the Great really innocent of this crime, or did this criminal act actually happen?

The Ultimate Sign: Isaiah 7 In Isaiah chapter 7, God demonstrates His faithfulness to a promise that He made with King David concerning the Davidic dynasty by giving the ultimate sign to the House of David. The sign would be a virgin born Son named Immanuel, God with us. As we examine this passage carefully, we will see from the historical context that Matthew is not taking verse 14 out of context in order to “proof-text” the virgin birth of Jesus. Moreover, the context is clearly pointing to the virgin birth of the Lord Jesus as the fulfillment of this passage in Isaiah 7. The Lord Jesus Christ is the sinless Immanuel and God manifest in human flesh.

The Pastor and the Christmas Story It was my 12th year as pastor of the same church. I had done a Christmas series of messages every December each year. Over the last couple of years it became increasingly difficult to come up with a new take on the old story. You might not have considered it before, but finding new material for every Christmas is not an easy task for a pastor – especially after being in the same church for a dozen years!

 

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