Snow Hill Baptist Church
No Regrets–Merry Christmas
By Pastor Dean Honeycutt
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Snow Hill Baptist Church. We trust you will have a wonderful holiday season knowing that Jesus is the reason for the season. And “there is no other name given among men whereby we must be saved.”
Remember that first Christmas was joyful and humbling. And I pray that your Christmas is both joyful and humbling. Joyful in that we celebrate the birth of Christ; humbling in that the baby in the manger was born to die for us. The angels and shepherds rejoiced at the birth of Jesus Christ. Mary and Joseph had traveled a long way to Bethlehem hoping to find a room in an inn but found themselves in a stable. The Bible says there was no room for them in the inn. Which leads me to think is there room for God in my heart?
The manger scene most of us picture is warm and comfortable, however because it was a place where animals were kept it was anything but warm and cozy. Not the conditions any of us would want our children to be born. But it was the place God’s Son was to be born. We see the providence of God as he orchestrated human events to bring Mary and Joseph from Nazareth to Bethlehem because Caesar Augustus ordered a census to be taken. This census would bring Joseph and his expecting bride to Bethlehem because Joseph was a descendant of King David. Jeremiah’s prophecy would be fulfilled “The Lord will raise unto David a righteous Branch and a King shall reign and prosper.” (Jr. 23:5) Jesus is the “root and offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.” (Rv. 22:16) This dynasty will reign and rule forever. There is a lot of fanfare and glamour around a “duck dynasty”. Why is it that things of the world seem to gain more attention at Christmas time than what Christmas is all about?
Who would believe that a King would be born in a stable? Jesus Christ was born in a very humble place, and He was wrapped in swaddling clothes. That was nothing more than stripes of cloth, what most of us call rags. Mary and Joseph were poor; they did not have a brand new baby outfit and they did not have one of those soft fleece baby blankets. Everything about the birth of Christ is humbling and meek. Micah says though Ephratah father of Bethlehem is insignificant or the “runt of the litter” of the tribes of Judah –out of you shall come a King in Israel. (Micah 5:2) We see throughout scripture little is much when God is in it. A little baby wrapped in swaddling clothes became the greatest gift the world has ever known. Keep your focus on the gift and the Giver– that is what Christmas is all about. Not malls or a man in a red suit.
Our Savior was born in a humble stable in a very meek and lowly way. As a matter of fact, the Bible says, “the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head, a man of sorrow acquainted with grief.” I often wonder what God is trying to teach me through the birth of Christ? Certainly, humility and meekness are attitudes God wants in my life, not glamour or popularity. You know God did not glamorize the birth of His son in a human way. The Bible does not record dignitaries or a priest at the stable. However, we do know that a multitude of heavenly angels were present at the Birth of their Commander and Chief. The first people to herald the good news were shepherds, far from some of the more popular people in Bethlehem at that time. Quite fitting since Jesus is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world.
I am grateful Christ would leave the glories of heaven empty himself, take on human flesh, live a sinless life, and die for me. The God-Man Jesus Christ is God’s atoning sacrifice for my sin. Jesus Christ would voluntarily restrict deity to experience humanity. I wonder how often I give up my comforts to do what God wants me to do. Certainly Christmas is a time for giving and sharing and a time of meekness and humility and a time to reflect on the meekness of the Baby in a manger and the triumph of the King of kings and the Lord of lords. May you have a wonderful Christmas.
Pastor Dean Honeycutt