A Message from Bill and Scriptures by Topic
From Bill Howard
‘Tis the Season
‘Tis the season to be jolly! ‘Tis the season to be joyous! ‘Tis the season to be thankful!
Thankful, again? Wasn’t that last month?
No, my friend, we are called to be thankful everyday and in all circumstances.
So what season calls for us to be jolly, joyous, and thankful?
Christmas, of course!
Because we’re jolly with friends and family? Joyous over the gifts we receive? Thankful we even got a gift?
Yes, to all the above! As we gather with friends and family, some who we rarely see, it is a festive occasion. The exchanging of gifts can show our love for one another. But no gift can come close to the Gift mankind received when our Savior, Jesus Christ, was born. Christmas has become so commercialized over the past century that many do not even know the truth of what we celebrate.
Because of God’s great love and mercy, and because sinful man could not save himself, God sent His Son to be born as a man, to live a life proclaiming truth, and to die on a cross to pay our sin debt. That’s the true celebration of Christmas—to celebrate not only His birth, but also His life, and His sacrificial death, and His resurrection to new life, and His ascension to heaven, and His intercession for us at the Father’s right hand, and His promised return to take us to be with Him. Doesn’t that give you reason to be thankful? Won’t that be a joyous time? Won’t we have a jolly good time in eternity? But there’s one thing you have to do.
Yeah? I figured there was a catch.
You have to receive the Gift. I know you like getting gifts, who doesn’t? But this is the greatest Gift of all time! One that lasts forever! Speaking of forever, if you refuse the Gift, you’ll spend forever regretting it. Jesus died to pay the penalty for your sins, but if you don’t accept His offer of salvation by believing in Him and making Him Lord of your life, you have rejected the Gift. John 3:36 tells us, “ And anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life. Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment.” Rejection gets you eternal death. Wouldn’t you rather have eternal life?
‘Tis the season, and Jesus is the reason!
Scripture by Topic from Randy
Topic : God sends his only begotten Son (Book of Luke)
The Birth of Jesus Foretold ----Luke Ch 1
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, 27 to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. 28 Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings,[d] favored woman! The Lord is with you![e]”
29 Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. 30 “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32 He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David.33 And he will reign over Israel[f] forever; his Kingdom will never end!”
34 Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.”
35 The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. 36 What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month.37 For the word of God will never fail.[g]”
38 Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.
The Birth of Jesus---Luke Ch 2
2 At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire. 2 (This was the first census taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 All returned to their own ancestral towns to register for this census. 4 And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He traveled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee. 5 He took with him Mary, to whom he was engaged, who was now expecting a child.
6 And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born.7 She gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.
The Shepherds and Angels
8 That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. 9 Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, 10 but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. 11 The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! 12 And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”
13 Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in highest heaven,
and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”
15 When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
16 They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. 17 After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. 18 All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished,19 but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. 20 The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.
John 3:16 New Living Translation (NLT)
16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.