Luke 2:1-21 (NIV)
There are several hints in this passage of the continued struggle for Mary and Joseph
• God gives the big picture to Mary in His invitation to her (Luke 1:34)– but doesn’t give the details –we have to trust Him through the little pictures.
• The Census of Rome-No room in the Inn–A barn and a manger
Notice who the offer was made to: God made room for shepherds.
• The shepherds were considered the dregs of society.
• Why were they invited? We get some hints two years later when the Magi came. Others were too busy, not interested or felt threatened. God wanted to encourage Mary and Joseph.
• It was an invitation, not an order.
Mark 2:17 (NIV)
1 Corinthians 1:26–30 (NIV) — 26 Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. 27 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28 God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him. 30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.
Notice the offer: A Messiah is born – Peace on earth to whom His favor rests
A. The invitation was given to worship the Lord and Savior – the Messiah.
B. What kind of peace was being offered? Not the peace the world gives.
• Peace is not an absence of trial.
• Biblical peace is not an absence of trouble – it’s a sense of confidence inspired by faith in God’s presence and promises.
• In spite of what the world does –and in spite of your struggles –I am with you and we will win.
• We have a choice to believe Gods promises.
• Faith leads to courage.
John 14:27 (NIV)
John 16:33 (NIV)
Hebrews 11:1 (NASB95)
C. What is His peace?
• Peace with God –through Christ –this Messiah.
• Peace of God –contentment –confidence
• Taking captive thoughts –remembering
• Eternal peace – Revelations 21
Romans 5:1–2 (NIV)
Psalm 23:4 (NIV)
Philippians 4:4–9 (NIV)
Notice who the peace was for: Those on whom His favor rests.
John 1:11–12 (NIV) — 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—
Notice their response: The real Christmas changes everything
• Their perspective changed –they left what they had been guarding.
• They worshipped what was missed by others – a poor couple with a baby in a manger.
• They spoke about the Messiah from then on.
• They had courage to do what is right in spite of the fear.
Notice how: The shepherds’ response was used by God in the life of Mary
• From hardship to treasure
Luke 2:19 (NIV) But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
QUESTIONS TO REFLECT AND DISCUSS:
• Passages to consider: Luke 2:8-20: Isaiah 9:6, 7; John 14:27; John 16:33;
Philippians 4:6-8; Isaiah 26:3
Ice Breaker: What is the best $100 you have ever spent?
• Share what stood out to you from the sermon.