Teacher: Pastor Chet Lowe

Main Scriptures: Matthew 1, Psalm 143

Date of Message: December 18, 2022

  • Without Christ, there is no Christmas
    • We all come into the Christmas season with different history in the past and different expectations for the present
    • If we’re honest, our culture has a stronger hold on how we define the season than the Bible does
  • Matthew 1:18-25
    • The first Christmas was not like our nativities
      • It was a family crisis for Mary’s family
      • It was a interpersonal relational crisis between Mary and Joseph
      • The Bethlehem experience was filled with fear, anxiety and stress
      • There were terrifying angelic hosts
      • They were refugees who were dependent on the money provided to them through the gifts brought at Jesus’ birth
      • They faced guilt because friends had lost their sons at Herod’s decree
  • If anyone can sympathize with our weak moments, it’s the Lord!
    • His name is Jesus
      • Jesus means “Yahweh saves!”
        • He came to save, not develop a holiday!
      • God was saving Joseph through this experience
        • Joseph was a just (moral) man but this trial was a challenge for him
        • God ministered to him personally
          • He knows our name (Isaiah 43:1)
          • He knows our history and heritage
            • God wants to redefine things for His people
          • He knows where we’re at
            • He will speak to you through His word (i.e. Psalm 143)
          • He knows our issues
            • He is not mad at us but wants to help us
      • Joseph allowed God to save Him and obeyed
        • His decision affected the whole story of Jesus’ birth
        • May we each respond the way Joseph did

Selah: Matthew 1:21 “…you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.”

Challenge to Change: Celebrate the real reason for the season.