Vs. 10, “But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.” What an amazing message and visit the lowly shepherds would receive from the angel that fateful night. I’ll expound a more on the shepherds in the application section. Notice how God used the decree of Caesar to help fulfill the prophecies that Jesus was to be from Bethlehem (Micah 5:2). It’s important to remember that God is in control of all things. We then fast-forward a bit to Joseph & Mary presenting Jesus at the temple in Jerusalem. Here they would meet Simeon a devout man of God who was promised by God that he would get to see Jesus before he died. They also would meet the prophetess Anna who would faithfully serve God even though she was a older and a widow. She too would recognize Jesus as the Messiah. And lastly, we are given a small snippet of Jesus as a young boy with his parents going to Jerusalem for Passover.
Regarding application…Sharing Jesus. Vs. 17, “When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child.” Question: After seeing the baby Jesus, what did the Shepherds do? They naturally shared the good news of hope they had seen and heard! Question: Why did God choose the Shepherds? He could have chosen the priests that night, he could have chosen the city leaders of Bethlehem, but he chose the lowly and dirty shepherds. I shared this with the youth on Sunday, but it was as if God did a scan of all the hearts in Bethlehem that night. He found hearts that would respond to this incredible hope and he chose them. God does the same today, He is looking for hearts ready to share a hope in a dark world. Will you respond and share?
Vs. 1 “Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us.” Bear in mind, Luke did not ever meet Jesus physically. Luke gathered eyewitness testimonies to bring into account the life of our Lord Jesus. The original receiver of this letter was Theophilus, not much is known of him. Let’s jump into the narrative. It was difficult times for God’s people. Some four hundred years have gone by without directly hearing from any prophet of God. It is here that the archangel Gabriel comes to pay a visit to the priest Zechariah. He brings a message of not just a baby boy, but a very special boy that would come in the spirit of Elijah. John the Baptist would come to help prepare the way. We also have the account of Gabriel coming to young Mary with the message of the baby Jesus! Here we see Mary’s beautiful song “The Magnificat” and her very rich knowledge of Scripture. Additionally, we see the birth of John the Baptist and Zechariah’s own song of praise.
Regarding application…Nothing is Impossible. Vs. 37, “For nothing is impossible with God.” I preached from this passage this past Sunday concerning Gabriel’s visit to Mary. Question: What was this impossibility that Mary faced? The virgin birth. A truth so often taken for granted. This impossible scenario would be a part of the proof that Jesus was both God and man. God fulfilled His promises to all of us through the miracle birth of Jesus. It’s worth noting how young Mary, just a teenager responded to this seemingly impossible promise with complete faith. While we contrast that to the priest Zechariah who doubted and God would strike him with being mute until after John’s birth. This profound truth that God can do the impossible stands true to us today. What obstacles in your life do you face with doubt and fear? Praise the Lord that we have a God that is in the business of doing the impossible!