Classic Christianity – Bob George – Christmas P2 (12-25-18)
Welcome to Classic Christianity radio with Bob George. This Christmas season, we are reminded of God’s greatest gift to you and me, His son Jesus Christ. We are told in the scriptures that God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). Our prayer for you is that you would accept Jesus Christ into your life and know how you are deeply loved. Check out BobGeorge.net for various resources to help you grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. Let us now join Bob as he presents practical biblical insights to help people experience faith, hope and love in Jesus Christ.
Before Bob started, a fellowship of believers were together as Amy, Bob’s wife, sang “Mary Did You Know” by Buddy Greene / Mark Lowry
Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day walk on water?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you’ve delivered, will soon deliver you
Mary did you know that your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary did you know that your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know that your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
When you kiss your little baby, you kiss the face of God
Mary did you know? Mary did you know? Mary did you know?
Mary did you know? Mary did you know? Mary did you know?
The blind will see, the deaf will hear, the dead will live again
The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, the praises of the lamb
Mary did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your baby boy is heaven’s perfect lamb?
That sleeping child you’re holding is the great I am
Mary did you know? Mary did you know? Mary did you know?
Mary did you know? Mary did you know? Mary did you know? Oh
Mary did you know?
Follow along in Luke 2 as Bob shares practical insights from God’s word. As you read the account, think about what Mary might have been pondering in her heart. What did she know? Bethlehem means city of bread and Jesus later identifies himself as the bread of life.
Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
Did Mary know that? Unusual events occurred prior to Jesus birth. The angel Gabriel announced the birth of John the Baptist, appeared to Mary to announce the birth of Jesus, who is to be born in her by The Holy Spirit, and appeared to Joseph to not be afraid to take Mary as his wife, and a multitude of angels appeared to the shepherds who were in the fields tending sheep.
How Mary pondered these things in her heart. What were all the things she pondered in her heart? She knew that being pregnant and not officially married, a disgrace of the people would certainly come upon her. She would be misunderstood, with insult and injury, such as all the things we experience in our day to day life, so Mary was pondering these things happening to her. It was no mystery that a Messiah was going to come and no mystery as to where he was to come. In the gospel of Matthew, great detail is also provided as to the genealogy of Jesus, showing he is from the line of David, as the prophets foretold. In those days they knew and were taught the scriptures so not an unknown event that a promised Messiah would come into the world.
But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.” Therefore Israel will be abandoned until the time when she who is in labor bears a son,
When the angels, who announced the birth of Jesus, had left and gone to heaven, the shepherds said “let us go to Bethlehem” and they saw a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes just as they had been told.
Now the wise men knew, for they studied the scriptures. Herod called upon the wise men to inquire where the king was to be born. But Herod, being a proud man, saw Jesus as a threat to his authority and power. Who is this king? “You in Bethlehem … one who will be ruler over Israel.” Herod saw that as a threat to his kingdom.
So people knew the Messiah was coming. Who is that Messiah and who is this baby I am holding in my arms? Is he the Messiah, God in the flesh? An angel appeared also to Joseph and announced what his name will be and what he will be called.
18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).
Matthew referenced the prophet Isaiah, who prophesied concerning the virgin birth of Jesus to king Ahab. King Ahab, though so proud, Isaiah spoke that God Himself shall give him a sign.
13 Then Isaiah said, “Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of humans? Will you try the patience of my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.
Immanuel means God with us. Can we hear things and not comprehend 100 percent these things? Yet though we hear we still ponder. Is this what pondering means? All through the life of Jesus, scripture records Mary pondering over things she heard concerning Jesus and those things that Jesus said and did. Even as a young man Jesus worked in his earthly father’s carpenter shop, a human being. Not much is recorded about Jesus early life. Yet in those early years of Jesus life we read about how as a young boy he sat in the temple and the religious leaders marveled at his wisdom and authority.
When Jesus was 12 years of age, he and his mother Mary and stepfather Joseph traveled to Jerusalem to celebrate the annual Feast of the Passover. When the feast had ended, Mary and Joseph became separated from Jesus and they searched for him. Jesus had gone to the Lord’s Temple and conversed with the people there. The people were amazed by his depth of understanding and by his knowledge. When Mary found Jesus at the Temple, Jesus said to her: “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” (Luke 2:49).
We also know from other scriptures that Jesus had other brothers and sisters and that he worked as a carpenter under his earthly father Joseph. He worked like you and me. He took on our human form in every way.
“Isn’t this the carpenter’s son? Isn’t his mother’s name Mary, and aren’t his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas?
Did people ponder in their heart that he is the one? Did Mary? The angel told Joseph his name was to be Jesus because he would save people from their sins. How is he going to do that? And what must Mary be pondering when Jesus tells her he had to be in His Father’s house? And what did Jesus brothers and sisters think.
2 But when the Jewish Festival of Tabernacles was near, 3 Jesus’ brothers said to him, “Leave Galilee and go to Judea, so that your disciples there may see the works you do. 4 No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world.” 5 For even his own brothers did not believe in him.
6 Therefore Jesus told them, “My time is not yet here; for you any time will do. 7 The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify that its works are evil.
Have you ever heard someone say “goody two shoes” to someone whose character stood above the rest, and certainly your own? Do people say those things because their own actions pale in comparison. How about having a perfectly sinless and holy person as your brother? Does his actions and words expose to you your shortcomings?
Jesus brothers went to him and thought Jesus was a little off. Here is Jesus making claims abut himself and people thinking he was crazy and so did Jesus brothers. Surely Mary pondered again of the supernatural birth of her son Jesus. Who ever had a child yet never been with a man. Should that be enough of a sign?
In our humanity, we can know something yet still ponder. Over a period of time watching these things, Mary is going to the cross, seeing her son hanging on that cross crucified like a common criminal. In a flood of tears, Jesus tells John this is your mother, take care of her.John 19:26-27
26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” 27 and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.
Apostle John took Mary into her home. That could not be the case if Joseph was still alive. Jesus indeed faced every human experience man would ever face. In Jesus lifetime, his father Joseph died. Go with John, Jesus told Mary as he was dying on a cross. History and tradition tell us Mary and John moved and lived in Ephesus.
Over time and years, even late years begin to see who Jesus was and the full implication of that. So Jesus is God yet fully human. Why would God take on human form? As one reads the book of Colossians, the message Jesus came to bring is made more clear.
15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
21 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of[g] your evil behavior. 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23 if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.
Look more closely just at Colossians 1:15
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
There a lot of people born before Jesus. Why would Jesus be called the firstborn over all creation? Jesus is the first man ever born alive spiritually. Adam was the first man created alive spiritually. Jesus is also referred to as the second or last Adam, the only man born alive spiritually. Adam was created alive spiritually and when he sinned he died. Since death is the absence of life, Adam died spiritually. We are born into this world not in the image of God Genesis 6 but in the image of Adam.
When God created mankind, he made them in the likeness of God. 2 He created them male and female and blessed them. And he named them “Mankind” when they were created.
3 When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image
Adam was created in the image of God, created alive, and became dead spiritually. We are born dead spiritually. All of us born in this world in the loins of Adam, dead spiritually. Dead to what? Born dead to the life of God living in you. We, every person, are not born in God but born alienated from God.
2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
If any man be in Christ he is a new creation. So God had to create a new man out of the old. What is the creation? God coming to live in humanity, a new creation. Man is not born that way but recreated that way. When you and I are born again, we were restored to the life Adam possessed before the fall. We are born again alive in body, soul and spirit.
So what is the difference between you, me and Adam? Adam was created alive with the ability to die. You and I are born again alive with a total inability to ever die again. The only reason is because the cross took away the sins of the world. That is why Jesus came to die! Sin is what caused spiritual death, and in taking away the sins of the world he eliminated the thing that caused spiritual death. That is why you and I have a life called eternal life in Christ Jesus, a new creation.
Why do they say Jesus is firstborn? Because he is the only man born alive spiritually. That is why the virgin birth is not an optional doctrine to believe. To deny the virgin birth is to deny the fact that you and I could be born again. Without the virgin birth, then he would be dead like you and me, inherited the sin nature of Adam. And then he, Jesus, could not lay down his life for you and me. But because of the virgin birth, he is the only one who could lay down his life for you and me, for he is the only one who has life to lay down and life to give to you and me. Jesus also testified of this when he walked the earth and spoke to the crowds and to his disciples.
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”
From Colossians we come to understand that Jesus is the creator, he is both God and man.
“For in him all things were created … all things have been created through him and for him
What does Genesis say?
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
What does Colossians say about Jesus? Then who is Jesus? If anyone denies Jesus is God then they must deny the logic of these scriptures. Did anyone understand the triune God before the coming of Jesus? No. Jews would recognize him as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Yet, according to scripture, spoken by the angel to Joseph, his name is Jesus.
Did Mary know that when pondering these things in her heart? No! These things had to be revealed over time.
17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
Who is holding this universe together? Awesome thought. Jesus! Satellites of blue marble earth floating in space. Is there a rope, a foundation I do not see? It is spinning. We are spinning in space yet sitting here. Jesus holds all this together. Jesus is before all things. In him all things hold together.
18 And he is the head of the body, the church
He is head of body, His church. The head of this body, called the church. Church is a body of people not the place on corner of walk and don’t walk. It is not a building with stained glass. The church of Jesus Christ is people. The very moment you step out of Adam into Christ and Christ steps out of heaven into you, you become a child of the living God, you have been baptized, placed into his body. That is why 2000 years ago and had to look for the body of Christ, had to look for Jesus. But he said “I am going away”.
16 Jesus went on to say, “In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me.”
17 At this, some of his disciples said to one another, “What does he mean by saying, ‘In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” 18 They kept asking, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We don’t understand what he is saying.”
But if you are going away, how are we going to see you? Where is your body going to be? Do not worry about that. Jesus is essentially saying, “I am going away but I will send my Spirit into you and you are going to be my body and greater things you are going to do.”
11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. 12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
What does that mean, to do greater things? Does that mean we will do more miracles? In essence Jesus is saying, “No, because my body will be all over the world, in all colors and creeds, and not limited by time and space. My body is going to be people in whom I live.” The church is not an organization but an organism. You are a part of the body whether sitting in a building or sitting at home. You are the body of Christ, not a location or a building. In today’s world we have organizational structures called “church” and those are not the church. People are the church. Wherever you are, you are a representative of the the kingdom of God on this earth. The world makes “church” into an organization structure with control freaks so as to keep people in bondage. Nothing can be done unless done in the pews. One could say that pews is where dead people live.
He is the head, and He is the beginning and firstborn among the dead. Who is the dead? We were. Who is the firstborn among the dead? He was. Who is born again since then? We are, everyone who has come to faith since the resurrection. The reason is so that in everything he might have the supremacy.
18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.
If we do not see him as the head then we will name another head and that head is going to be supreme. That is why today we have popes who are supreme and Christian leaders who are supreme and Jesus takes a back seat to the whole deal. If we see the church for what it is, not as an organization but as people, then there is only one head you can turn to and that is Him and He meant it to stay that way. The deceived world meant it to do something else. You hear people say “You can’t be baptized unless you are Baptist or belong to a certain denomination”. You might hear others say, “You cannot take communion unless you belong to a certain denomination”. Are you in Christ? Then celebrate that fact in any place. There is only one person you belong to and that is Him. You come to fellowship with believers but there is no membership there. There is no need to pass out membership cards. The only member there with Jesus Christ is the one in Christ Jesus. Anywhere you go you are a part of the body of Christ. You are part of the body of Christ.
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.
So then, the wide road is the religious road, the false denominations with false members. You will not grow to 20000 members on the narrow road, coming to faith in Christ. For that is a personal decision that cannot be forced or controlled. Truth is shared and people respond to that truth. It is better to have a few born again believers than a mix of those who a re carnal or even non-believers in the mix of what is called church membership.
19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
So then, if you to know God the Father, get to know God the Son. Jesus testified of this when he said:
I and the Father are one.
If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
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