Grace Bible Church
Robert R. McLaughlin
WednesdayDecember 24, 2014
ISA 7:14 “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.
ISA 9:6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
I was struck about the dichotomy between Christmas for the Christian and Christmas for the world.
One of them had a fat man with a white beard on it and a couple of little elves and it said, “Ho, ho, ho.”
The other had a manger with a star and a baby and it said, “Thou shall call His name Emmanuel, interpreted “God with us.”
For some it is peace toward men of good will.
For the majority it is mass confusion, furious rushing around, even to the rising of the suicide rate.
That lovely night over 2,000 years ago was when one star lit the Heavens and marked the spot where the Christ, the Messiah, the Savior of the world, was born, and where God became a member of the human race.
The first Christmas was actually a poor one, with a manger and a stable where God’s uniquely born Son had nowhere to lay His head.
The real meaning behind the first Christmas was a time when wise men came to worship Jesus to celebrate the virgin birth.
The babe of Bethlehem was born a Savior to give to men all that they would ever need.
The paradoxical prophecies.
Did you know that there is no way that Old Testament prophets could ever have understood the fullness of the coming Messiah.
A prophet would sit down and the Holy Spirit would inspire him and he would write that there was coming a conqueror who would rule the world, who would be the Savior and deliverer of men.
That very same prophet would sit down later and write about a man of sorrows who was lonely and rejected by His own people, including His very own family.
He looked like a loser but He was a winner.
The paradox is based upon the statement He made that the first shall be last but the last shall be first.
Then another prophet would write about a king of glory and a king of Heaven, an eternal Savior, the desire of all nations.
There was no beauty that men would desire Him, and that He was a servant ‑ bloody, suffering, crucified and dead.
The prophet would write that He would come in flaming fire to take vengeance on His enemies.
Then another prophet would write that He would come preaching peace.
In fact, one of the last Old Testament prophets was trapped in this paradox, his name was John the Baptist.
In LUK 3:2 regarding John says, “The word of God came to John.”
The Messiah was going to be a judge and that when the Messiah came terrible things would happen.
LUK 3:7, He therefore began saying to the multitudes who were going out to be
You know what He did? Mostly deeds of mercy. He healed the sick. He gave sight to the blind.
Hearing to the deaf.Voices to the dumb.Life to the dead.
Here was John the Baptist called the greatest one who ever lived according to MAT 11:11, in prison.
John was trapped in the paradox of prophecy.
The words that He used in Verse 5. They are really a paraphrase of Isaiah 35:5 and 35:6 and Isaiah 61:1.
They didn’t see any distinction between the First Coming and the Second.
Verse 6 is a gentle rebuke ‑ “And blessed is he whosoever shall not be offended in me, or shall not stumble because of what I am doing.”