The Eternal Joy of Christmas
Luke 2:9-11; Selected Passages
Today’s message is about biblical joy. Unlike happiness, biblical joy is not based on temporal things that end, it is anchored on our unchanging God. It is His gift to us that would enable us to inwardly react to God’s very nature and impressive work. Thus joy, is a characteristic of a true believer. I want to share with you today the Endless Joy of Christmas. And there are several important causes that would make you experience biblical joy despite of unfavourable and unforgiving circumstances, like this pandemic we are facing today.
1. Great joy from God’s good news.
Genesis 3:15, “15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”
· Bad news: Rev. 12: “7 Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon [Satan], and the dragon and his angels fought back.”
· Good news: Rev. 12: “8 But he [Satan] was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.”
· Bad news: Rev. 12:9, “He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.”
· Good news: Gen. 3:15, “he will crush your head,and you will strike his heel” is called by some as Protoevangelium literally the very first gospel. The gospel literally means “good news”.
· God’s plan of salvation could not be stopped. He fulfilled the good news through the birth of Jesus – the first Advent.
“9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.” Luke 2:9-11.
2. Immeasurable joy from the Son of God.
Luke 2:11, “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.”
· Jesus is the promised Savior, the Messiah (the anointed One), the Lord (the highly respected One).
· The name Jesus originated from the Hebrew name Yehoshua or the shortened version, Yeshua.
· In Greek, Jesus is Yesous and pronounced as ee-ay-sooce.
· Yeho is a prefix for the name of God. It’s the abbreviation for YHVH or Yahweh or the LORD. Yahweh is the name of God in the Old Testament.
· Jesus claimed, “I and the Father are one.” John 10:30.
· Jewish opponents of Jesus understood this as claiming equality with God. “33 “We are not stoning you for any good work,” they replied, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God.” John 10:31-33.
· And they were right! Isaiah 9:6-7 says, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God…”
· Jesus’ name also conveys His mission – to save from eternal punishment those who believe in His name. The suffix from Yeshua is shua, and it is a form of the Hebrew word Yasha which means to deliver, to save.
In reference to Jesus, Acts 4:12 says, “12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”
3. Endless joy from the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Ephesians 1:13-14 “13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
· All believers have been sealed by the Holy Spirit.
· As our seal and deposit, the Holy Spirit “authenticated us to be owned by God” and guaranteed to receive inheritance – eternity with God.
“28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.” John 10:28-30
· The Holy Spirit works inwardly to produce God-honouring lives.
“22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness.” Galatians 5:22.