Christmas through the eyes of Prophecy!

                       Hebrews 1:1 Christmas 2007


Christmas is a time of?

Ask many a young Child and they will say: Getting Presents


“Every Christmas Americans use over 28 million rolls of wrapping paper, and almost 17 million packages of tags and bows. And it all goes under 35 million Christmas trees.”


A New York City retailer, Hammacher Schlemmer, is selling an upside-down tree. It’s perfect for people who live in cramped quarters, & want to conserve floor space…

Here’s what the company says about their novel Christmas tree, “The inverted shape makes it easier to see ornaments, which hang away from the dense needles.”

Of course, the biggest appeal of the upside-down Christmas tree is it provides extra room under the tree for the accumulation of more presents.

        Favorite with Kids for that reason


But Even adults can get into the Christmas is a time for getting Presents mentality.


It reminds me of the husband and wife who were in the middle of a squabble.

They wanted to buy a new car for Christmas.

But the husband wanted a truck, while the wife had her eye on a fast and fancy new sports car.

A) They argued for days over the decision.


B) Finally, the wife laid down an ultimatum “If I don’t get something that’ll go from 0 to 180 in four seconds flat you’re going to spend a lonely Christmas.”


When the husband bristled up, the wife remained adamant, “You heard me, I want something that’ll go from 0 to 180 in four seconds flat.”


Well on Christmas morning there it was… wrapped in a bright red ribbona new bathroom scale.


Funeral arrangements for the husband are still pending...


Most of us know that Christmas is more than a time of getting presents or even giving presents


Consider this morning: Christmas is a time of Connections!

Last week we talked about Christmas lights!

A) Do you know how many lights are sold Annually ?

                 150 million sets!


B) Ever gotten into the attic to get out your Christmas lights.

1) You spend an hour untangling another hour putting them up  - Plug in AND NOTHING

2) It doesn’t light up!

C) Now back in the old days one bad bulb would keep your whole strand from lighting up

1) On the newer strands a lose or defective bulb can keep the whole strand from lighting


Well I was thinking this week that the prophecies of Jesus first coming are like Christmas lights

A) There are 100’s of Prophecies concerning Christ first coming stretching like strands of Christmas lights from one end of the OT to the other


B) What difference would it make if one of the Christmas lights – if one of the prophecies wasn’t fulfilled? – The whole strand would go out.


C) They were fulfilled stretching across the centuries

Connecting -


D) So this morning I want us to consider the idea that Christmas is a time for Connections.  


Between Old and New Testament:

“God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, 2 has in these last days spoken to us by His Son.”  Hebrews 1:1,2


I hope you have come to understand and really value the Old Testament. What a marvelous book!

A) How many different ways God spoke in that book -- in dreams, in visions, in sudden appearances!


B) The Biggest way that God spoke was thru the voice of the Prophets


C) The Primary Purpose of the Prophets was to point us to Jesus! 

1)What they spoke of Comes together in Jesus Christ


This past week I read about the time when CS Lewis was writing the 1st book in the Chronicles of Narnia series The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, he was going thru a personal time of struggle. 

He started to work on the novel at a particularly miserable time in his life.


His writing reflected his mood. Lewis said, “At first it seemed a bumbling story, flat and uninspired…”


What turned it around was the introduction of the lion.

Aslan – who in the story is a picture of Christ.


Not only did Lewis finish “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe”, but he completed six more novels in the Chronicles of Narnia series.


After the last story had been completed Lewis commented about the first, “Only when the great lion Aslan came “bounding into it” did I stopped bumbling, and the story began to move in its proper course. Aslan pulled the whole story together…”


Well, Jesus pulls together the OT and the NT –

All started with a man named Abraham –

1) God called Abe out of Ur of the Chaldeans

2) separated him, and promised that through his seed the nations of the world would be blessed.


C) Thru His line would come a Messiah a Savior of the World. -


D)Through the years God renewed this promise to the children of Abraham –


E) God impregnated His people with a promise - then told them to wait and believe.


God gave indications pointing that the time was near!

A) In Genesis 49:10, before Jacob died he prophesied to his twelve sons that “Shiloh” (an earlier name for the Messiah) would come before Judah was stripped of her right to govern herself.


B)The last remnant of self-rule was taken from Judah in 19 AD, when the Romans withdrew from the Jews their right to exercise capital punishment.


C) About the time Jesus was born a star appeared in the skies over Babylon.

1)A few Persian astrologers magi or wisemen as we call them saw the astronomical marvel, and took notice. Followed to Bethlehem.


About 1445 years earlier – another Persian - named Balaam - uttered a God-given prophecy.

A) His words are recorded in Numbers 24:17, "I see Him, but not now; I behold Him, but not near; a Star shall come out of Jacob; a Scepter shall rise out of Israel…”   Balaam


B) Balaam associated the appearance of a star with the coming of a Scepter, or ruler, out of Israel.

1) A closer contemporary to the wise men – a man named Daniel also influenced the wisemen who visited Jesus.


C)In Daniel 9, the prophet predicted the very day the Jewish King would appear to the nation Israel.

1a) It would be 173,880 days from the time that King Artx. Gave the decree to go and rebuild and restore Jerusalem.

1) From Daniel’s prophecy the magi could calculate Jesus’ approximate time of arrival.


D) Daniel and Balaam both primed the pump.

1)They stirred  these eastern wise men to look westward for a sign that the Savior of the world was born.

2) A CONNECTION was created between East and West


Yet not only was the TIME of His birth predicted, but so was the location.

A) God not only had a preplanned time, He also had a preplanned place.

B) His birthplace was predicted long in advance.

1) 700 years earlier, the prophet Micah identified that Messiah would be born in the little town of Bethlehem.


 Micah 5:2 declares that out of the city of Bethlehem, “shall come forth to Me the One to be ruler in Israel, whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.”


C) Mary and Joseph were living in Nazereth

1) In order for God to get them to Bethlehem - Ceasar Agustus – prompted to take a census.


D) That is what God used to get Joseph of Nazareth to move his pregnant wife a hundred miles south to the appointed place of the birth.


E) Imagine traveling – 100 miles on the back of a donkey – 9 months pregnant –

As they walked down the Jordan Valley, I wonder if Joseph was muttering under his breath, “This census makes no sense. Isn’t it enough that Augustus     rules the world? Why does he have to brag about the number of his subjects?”


Yet God was using something as spiritually trivial a Caesar’s inflated ego to fulfill His divine, eternal will.


Even this amazing and miraculous detail was given 700 yrs in advance.

Isaiah 7:14. "Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel…" 


1st and only time a VIRGIN CONCIEVES


Jesus was the final stanza to the song the prophets had been singing for centuries.

A) The hope of the Old Testament saints was fulfilled in Jesus.


B) When Jesus was born a long, cold night had ended - and the first rays of a new day had dawned.

1) A grim past gave way to a glorious present, and a hopeful future.


C) This is what prompted a 6th century monk, Dionysiuys, to split the calendar into A.D. (anno domini, Latin for “in the year of our Lord”) and B.C. (before Christ).


Dionysiuys recognized Christmas as the connection between past and present. Between the OT and the NT


Christmas connects the OT to the NT – connects East to West


Connects all men

Connection between all men:




Speaking of the coming of Messiah Isaiah declared

Isaiah 9:2

2 The people who walked in darkness Have seen a great light ; Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, Upon them a light has shined.


Sinners in need of a savior  { Men in darkness light shined – revelation was given


Christmas Star appeared to the wealthy wisemen


and the Angelic Choir appeared to the lowly shepherds pointing them to the same place – Bethlehem where the Savior was born


Remember the words the Angelic Choir Pronounced

Luke 2:10-14

10 Then the angel said to them,"Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. 11 For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger."


13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:


14 "Glory to God in the highest,

And on earth peace , goodwill toward men!"  


Christmas Connects mankind in his need for a Savior -

Ten days after the attack on Pearl Harbor, a group of citizens in North Platte, Nebraska, heard a rumor that soldiers from their hometown would be traveling through town on a troop train, on their way to the West Coast.

Five hundred people turned out at the train depot with gifts and tokens of love for their boys.


But when the train showed up, it was not the Nebraska National Guard. The soldiers on board were from the Kansas National Guard.


After people realized the mix up there was an awkward moment or two – nobody really knew what to do - until a woman handed a young man she'd never seen the gifts intended for her own son.

The other 499 citizens followed her lead.


There were hugs, and prayers, and love shared all around.

The encounter that day in the depot was a spontaneous act of genuine love that touched both the soldiers and the citizens of North Platte, Nebraska.


The townspeople thought the gifts they had brought were for their own sons, but nobody could argue their gifts had really been intended for someone else.


Christmas Connects Mankind

Christmas doesn’t just connect man to man – but more importantly Christmas Connects God to man

Isaiah 9:6 is a favorite Christmas passage, “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given…”


Christmas is the celebration of a gift from God.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that   whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”  John 3:16


Christmas is all about heaven breaking through - God intervening in human affairs.

A) Christmas proves that God doesn’t sit in the heavens with folded arms, expecting us to work it out on our own.


B) God jumps into our muck and mire. To make a connection with Man!

1)But  He comes subtly, humbly… as a baby. Born in a stinky smelly stable – surrounded by the barnyard animals and their smells.


C)And here’s my point – 2000 years later Christmas is still about connections.

1)God’s desire to be connected to lost humanity – separated by Sin


D) Jesus is still willing to invade our stable, or workplace, our marriages , our families with a miracle – birth new life into a world where death reigned –

E)To fill a stinky atmosphere with a sweet aroma of His grace – fill up a dark, night sky with His glory and goodwill.


F) Christmas is still the time of the year when God connects the lights – they all lead us to Jesus


CS Lewis once made the observation that early in a child’s life he can love Santa Claus, and reindeer, and elves, and toys, and gingerbread houses - and  the baby in the manger… all simultaneously.


There are no conflicts in his mind.


But the day comes when he recognizes the factualness of the one and the fantasy of the other – and at that point, the child has to decide.


If he puts the spiritual first he can still appreciate the festive aspects of the season.


But if he puts the festive aspects first – to the exclusion and neglect of Christ – those festive and playful aspects will soon lose their luster.


Lewis writes, “They  will have taken on an independent, and therefore a soon withering life.”


Hey, anything in life we treat independent from Jesus soon begins to wither.

Remove Christ from the center of Christmas, and all the gifts you give won’t bring you a slither of happiness.

But remember that all your gifts are a reflection  of God’s greatest gift, and every gift given or received will become sacred.

It’s been said, “He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree.”


The writer of Hebrews finishes his thought in this way.  RD V.1-7


Jesus connected the prophetic lights of His first coming – not one was out.


Connected Man to Man – Sinners in the dark in need of a light and Savior


Most of all made a way for man to be connected to God – thru His Son – Jesus


Christmas is about Connections and that is why it is all about Jesus – Are you connected to Him? 






He has connected the lights of his 2nd Coming – Now we wait – 1st coming lamb – 2nd lion  1st to save – 2nd to Judge


Question I leave you with this morning –Are you connected to Jesus?