I hope you’re enjoying these posts from my friend Dave Boehi, who wrote these Advent lessons to encourage us during Christmas. I love how he suggests using our new His Advent Names Adorenaments in each one. -Barbara
I never get tired of reading the Christmas story in Luke every December. One scene that my kids love to remember is in Luke 2:10-14, when a group of shepherds outside Bethlehem is visited by a “heavenly host”:
And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased.”
The angel and the heavenly host were messengers from God, sent to deliver “good news of great joy.” But they’re not the only messengers mentioned in the book of Luke.
Luke 1 reports that the angel Gabriel appeared to Zechariah to tell him that he will soon have a son, even though he and his wife were “advanced in years.” Zechariah’s son, now known as John the Baptist, was a messenger himself, sent by God to prepare the way for Christ.
Gabriel appears again, to give a humble girl named Mary a message that is even more miraculous: “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High.”
Still there’s another messenger: Jesus was the ultimate Messenger. He is the “messenger of the covenant” spoken of in Malachi 3:1. When He grew into manhood and began His public ministry, the words He spoke were a direct message from God.
And what did Jesus proclaim as God’s messenger? Mark 1:14-15 tells us, “…Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’”
He proclaimed the gospel, the “good news,” that man can know God and walk intimately with Him. And then He provided a way to allow us eternal access to God. When we repent and trust in God for the forgiveness of our sins, He makes us new. He gives us hope, and He gives us eternal life.
That is the message of Christmas, a message of hope and peace from the swaddled baby Messenger Himself.
For more application with your children:
Have you ever told your children how you first heard the message of salvation? It’s time you share it with them. Gather your family this week and share your encounter with this message, the Messenger. Offer your children the chance to accept this message for themselves. This Christmas may be the time that they’re ready to accept who Jesus is as their Savior and friend.
If you’re just joining us for Advent, welcome! Remember that any effort made to focus on Christ this season is worth it. It’s not too late! Jump in this week and if you have time you can look back at Week 1 and Week 2. Be sure to subscribe to the blog to not miss next final Advent week’s lesson.