The Meaning of Christmas | TBN

The Meaning of Christmas

Watch The Meaning of Christmas
December 22, 2019
27:39

Live with Passion with Father Cedric

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The Meaning of Christmas

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  • (uplifting music)
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  • Don't just live
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  • Don't just live
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  • Don't just live
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  • Live with passion
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  • - Welcome to Live With Passion.
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  • I'm Father Cedric Pisegna.
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  • It's a joy to come into your home, especially on Christmas!
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  • I want to wish you and all of your loved ones
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  • a very merry Christmas, have a blessed time together,
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  • and let me share this Scripture with you.
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  • This comes from the prophet Isaiah,
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  • and it's proclaimed at Midnight Mass all around the world.
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  • "For to us a child is born,
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  • "a son is given,
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  • "and the government will be upon his shoulder.
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  • "His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor,
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  • "Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
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  • "Of the increase of His government
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  • "and of peace there will be no end."
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  • The Word of the Lord, thanks be to God.
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  • There's a tremendous commotion at Christmas,
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  • I don't know if you've ever noticed that,
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  • but malls are filled with people shopping,
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  • there's Christmas trees being picked up everywhere.
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  • Churches are packed with people,
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  • there's tinsel and lights and traffic and travel,
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  • and online, people are shopping, there's food,
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  • there's relatives, there's stress, tremendous commotion.
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  • The first Christmas was the same way, tremendous commotion.
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  • Angels singing, shepherds rushing,
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  • animals gathering, stars shining,
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  • camels coming, kings appearing.
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  • Why all this fuss over a little tiny baby?
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  • Well, I think the angels give us a clue.
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  • The angels appeared to the shepherds and they said,
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  • "This day, a Savior is born to you."
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  • That's why there's so much commotion, because this day,
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  • and this is what we celebrate at Christmas,
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  • this day, or in the Catholic Church, the Christmas season.
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  • This season, a child has been born to us.
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  • I looked up the most popular names for babies online,
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  • just wondering what parents
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  • are calling their children nowadays,
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  • and for girls, these are the most popular names.
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  • Number one, Emma, and number two,
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  • Olivia, that's interesting.
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  • And then for boys, the most popular names are,
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  • the number one most popular name for a boy,
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  • believe it or not, is Liam, L-I-A-M.
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  • And then Noah, and then Lucas.
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  • And Cedric didn't make it, but I found out
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  • that some people that watch my programs,
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  • one person actually named their cat Cedric,
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  • so we're getting there.
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  • And another person up in Michigan,
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  • a young man took his confirmation name as Cedric.
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  • But Cedric didn't make the list,
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  • but what I wanted you to know is that names
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  • have meaning, and they have significance.
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  • For example, the name Cedric
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  • means warrior, or battle chieftain.
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  • Now, I write and produce, and I preach and I travel.
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  • I'm a road warrior, (chuckles)
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  • and you gotta be a warrior when it comes
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  • to writing and producing and doing what I do.
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  • So in a way, my name fits me.
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  • Well, names have significance.
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  • Whatever name that you have for yourself,
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  • or whatever name you have in your family,
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  • they all have significance,
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  • and the angel gave Jesus his name.
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  • And it's not just because it sounds nice,
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  • but Jesus' name has significance!
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  • If you remember, Joseph, in a dream,
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  • was given the name Jesus by the angel Gabriel,
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  • and he was told to name the child Jesus because,
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  • and here's the meaning of the name,
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  • he will save his people from their sins.
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  • And this is why we're celebrating Christmas,
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  • that Jesus has come, and the meaning of his name
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  • is that he will be our Savior.
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  • Now what does he save us from?
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  • Again, from our sins, but most of all,
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  • Jesus came to save us from death, from eternal death!
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  • Yeah, we're all gonna die, but not eternally.
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  • We believe that Jesus will raise us up!
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  • So he was born so that we could be reborn.
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  • He was born so that we could live forever,
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  • and this is why we celebrate.
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  • That's why there's such a great commotion.
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  • That's why the stars were shining.
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  • That's why the angels were singing.
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  • That's why wise men from the East came,
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  • because Jesus Christ is born!
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  • Now the name Jesus, again, means Savior.
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  • Now in my mind, we don't need so much
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  • a teacher, although we do need to be taught.
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  • In fact, in the Gospel of Mark, the great name for Jesus,
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  • the great title of Jesus is that of Teacher.
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  • You'll always see people coming up to him,
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  • "Rabbi," which means Teacher.
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  • So he was a great teacher,
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  • and he gave us all kinds of beautiful wisdom.
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  • But more than a teacher, we need a Savior.
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  • We don't so much need a guru or a Buddha
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  • or somebody just to show us the way.
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  • We need freedom from death!
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  • The death that haunts all of us,
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  • the death that we will all have to endure.
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  • And we believe that Jesus saves us from death,
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  • and that's why the commotion,
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  • that's why the great celebration,
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  • that's why Christmas is such a great holiday.
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  • Do you know that our calendar is actually
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  • measured from the birth of Christ?
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  • There's B.C., before Christ, and A.D., year of our Lord!
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  • The whole calendar that we go by is measured
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  • from this tremendous feast day that we celebrate, Christmas.
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  • Even when wars are going on,
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  • as bad as the other side may be, that the enemies may be,
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  • however hedonistic they may be or atheistic they may be,
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  • even wars will stop on Christmas, there will be a ceasefire.
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  • This is how important this day is!
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  • Even atheists know (chuckles) that Christmas,
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  • in some way, shape, or form, is important.
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  • So it's not just a cultural feast day,
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  • it's very much a religious holiday.
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  • Religious because Jesus, we believe,
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  • is the Son of the Living God, the Wonderful Counselor,
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  • the Everlasting Father, come to save us.
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  • Interesting, what will this child grow up to be?
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  • There's a song that says something like,
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  • "Who will this child come to be?"
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  • Well, he will come to be the resurrection and the life.
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  • Jesus said, "I am the way,
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  • "the truth, and the life."
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  • Jesus said, "I am the resurrection and the life."
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  • So this little teeny baby, this vulnerable baby
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  • that we can touch, that is a part of our experience,
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  • would grow up to be this great teacher,
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  • and more than that, a savior!
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  • Fulton Sheen wrote a book, Fulton Sheen,
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  • of course, the great bishop that lived years ago,
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  • paved the way for Catholic television.
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  • He wrote many books, and one of the books that he wrote
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  • was called "The Life of Christ."
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  • And in this book "The Life of Christ,"
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  • he talked about the birth of Christ.
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  • And he said this, a very poignant saying, he said,
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  • "Jesus was the only person ever born to die."
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  • Imagine that, the purpose
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  • and the meaning of this birth of Christ.
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  • He was born, yes, to live, but to die!
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  • And Fulton Sheen said that, "The shadow of the cross
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  • "hung over the crib," very alliterative,
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  • the cross over the crib,
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  • and that the whole purpose of Jesus' birth
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  • was so that he could die upon a cross
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  • and bring us salvation, remember what the angel said,
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  • "He will save his people from their sins,"
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  • and then of course, he will save us from death,
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  • that's what salvation means.
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  • Well, because of my television programs,
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  • I get all kinds of different letters and emails from people,
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  • and here, I just got this very recently,
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  • a very poignant letter.
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  • "Hello, Father Cedric, I listen to you
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  • "every Sunday morning on Trinity Broadcasting Network.
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  • "And I enjoy your teachers and I enjoy listening to you.
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  • "I feel like I'm lost, and I need a savior,
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  • "and I'd certainly appreciate it if you would tell me
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  • "exactly what I need to do to be saved,"
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  • and then he put, "as soon as possible,
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  • "because I'm getting older." (laughs)
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  • And I love getting letters like this,
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  • because that's what my ministry is all about!
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  • I'm here to help you, the number one thing I do,
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  • I want to encourage you, I want to inspire you,
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  • I want to help you live with passion,
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  • I want to bring meaning to your life,
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  • I want to teach you about your sufferings.
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  • But the number one thing I want to do with my ministry
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  • is to help you to receive salvation!
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  • And remember what I said, you're saved from your sins
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  • and saved from death, saved for everlasting life.
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  • God will save you.
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  • When you save a program on a computer,
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  • everything is kept, every comma, every period,
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  • every word, every letter, it's kept.
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  • And that's what it means to be saved,
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  • you will be kept for eternal life.
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  • You will be changed, but it'll still be you,
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  • forever and ever and ever!
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  • So the man asked quite poignantly, point-blank,
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  • "What do I gotta do to be saved?"
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  • That same question was asked of Paul the Apostle.
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  • Paul the Apostle, if you remember,
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  • he was out preaching the gospel with Silas,
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  • his missionary partner, and they ended up,
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  • because they were preaching the gospel,
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  • they ended up being thrown into a Philippian jail.
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  • And while they were in this jail, I mean,
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  • it was dark, it was dank, it was awful.
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  • In the middle of the night, at the midnight hour,
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  • amazingly, Paul and Silas are singing!
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  • They're praising God, they're thanking God,
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  • right in the midst of these stinky,
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  • smelly, dank circumstances.
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  • And it says that all the people in jail
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  • were listening, including the jailer himself.
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  • All of a sudden, as they're singing,
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  • there was an earthquake!
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  • And because of the earthquake, the door burst open,
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  • they were free to go, but they didn't go anywhere.
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  • The jailer thought that they had all escaped,
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  • he was about to kill himself, and Paul said,
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  • "No, no, no, we're still here!"
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  • And the jailer comes up to Paul with the same question
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  • that this man asked, and obviously,
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  • he could see that God was working in their life,
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  • they're singing at midnight, there's an earthquake,
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  • they were all free to go.
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  • And he comes up to Paul and he says,
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  • "What do I gotta do to be saved?" (laughs)
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  • In other words, I want what you've got!
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  • You obviously have something that I don't, and I want it!
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  • And he said, "What do I gotta do to be saved?"
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  • And Paul just gave this simple answer,
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  • and this is what I want you to get.
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  • "Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ."
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  • Not just believe that he was,
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  • but believe that he came for you.
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  • Believe that he died on the cross for you.
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  • Believe that he loves you, personally.
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  • Always personalize this faith.
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  • It's not just for the world, although it is,
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  • it's for you and it's for me.
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  • That's exactly what I told this man.
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  • In fact, I sent him one of my books.
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  • I told him, "Simply believe."
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  • It's not hard to do, it's really easy.
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  • We all have that gift within us, we can simply believe.
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  • Believe that Jesus not only was, that he was born,
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  • but believe that he came for you, that he loves you,
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  • and that he died on the cross for you!
  • 00:11:55.110 --> 00:11:57.250
  • And then, if you believe, you're gonna start
  • 00:11:57.250 --> 00:12:00.170
  • doing different things, like pray,
  • 00:12:00.170 --> 00:12:03.200
  • read the Scriptures, get involved in church,
  • 00:12:03.200 --> 00:12:06.270
  • reach out and start helping other people.
  • 00:12:06.270 --> 00:12:09.010
  • See, faith without works is dead.
  • 00:12:09.010 --> 00:12:11.060
  • I don't want to get into all that, but I just want
  • 00:12:11.060 --> 00:12:12.260
  • to tell you, the fullness of faith isn't just
  • 00:12:12.260 --> 00:12:14.280
  • a confidence, it comes with works,
  • 00:12:14.280 --> 00:12:18.040
  • with actions, it's the actions of faith.
  • 00:12:18.040 --> 00:12:21.160
  • So what do you gotta do to be saved?
  • 00:12:21.160 --> 00:12:23.040
  • Just believe, (chuckles) simply believe.
  • 00:12:23.040 --> 00:12:25.290
  • This is what Christmas is, this is what we're celebrating!
  • 00:12:25.290 --> 00:12:28.250
  • Believe that Jesus came,
  • 00:12:28.250 --> 00:12:30.080
  • not just for the world, but for you, too!
  • 00:12:30.080 --> 00:12:33.060
  • His name is Savior.
  • 00:12:34.050 --> 00:12:35.220
  • Yes, we need a teacher, but we need a savior,
  • 00:12:35.220 --> 00:12:37.240
  • we need somebody to deliver us from death!
  • 00:12:37.240 --> 00:12:40.280
  • And that's what I want you to receive in this program
  • 00:12:40.280 --> 00:12:42.260
  • right now, in fact, this is what we're gonna do.
  • 00:12:42.260 --> 00:12:46.000
  • Surrender, just pray with me,
  • 00:12:46.000 --> 00:12:50.070
  • silently, Jesus, I believe that you came for me.
  • 00:12:50.070 --> 00:12:53.280
  • Jesus, I believe that you love me.
  • 00:12:55.120 --> 00:12:57.150
  • Jesus, I believe that you were born
  • 00:12:58.200 --> 00:13:00.070
  • so that I could be reborn.
  • 00:13:00.070 --> 00:13:01.280
  • Jesus, I believe that you died for me on the cross.
  • 00:13:03.120 --> 00:13:05.250
  • I give my life to you, I believe that I'm saved, yes!
  • 00:13:07.070 --> 00:13:11.040
  • Amen, that is the meaning of Christmas!
  • 00:13:11.040 --> 00:13:14.280
  • It's all about Jesus, it's all about salvation,
  • 00:13:14.280 --> 00:13:19.110
  • it's all about being born again,
  • 00:13:19.110 --> 00:13:21.260
  • it's all about living forever.
  • 00:13:21.260 --> 00:13:23.180
  • That's why there's such a commotion!
  • 00:13:23.180 --> 00:13:25.230
  • I know there's gift-giving and there's traffic
  • 00:13:25.230 --> 00:13:27.230
  • and there's trees and all these different things,
  • 00:13:27.230 --> 00:13:30.010
  • but all the commotion's good because this has meaning!
  • 00:13:30.010 --> 00:13:33.100
  • Christmas has significant, ultimate, eternal meaning.
  • 00:13:33.100 --> 00:13:38.020
  • And yes, there should be commotion.
  • 00:13:38.020 --> 00:13:40.090
  • That's why the star appears
  • 00:13:40.090 --> 00:13:41.260
  • and the wise men come from the East.
  • 00:13:41.260 --> 00:13:43.190
  • That's why the shepherds hear the angels singing.
  • 00:13:43.190 --> 00:13:46.040
  • That's why the angels are singing,
  • 00:13:46.040 --> 00:13:47.190
  • "Glory to God, and peace to people on Earth," wow!
  • 00:13:47.190 --> 00:13:51.030
  • There should be great celebrations,
  • 00:13:52.070 --> 00:13:53.220
  • and that's why relatives get together
  • 00:13:53.220 --> 00:13:55.110
  • and people get together, have wonderful Christmas meals,
  • 00:13:55.110 --> 00:13:58.090
  • that's why churches are packed,
  • 00:13:58.090 --> 00:14:00.110
  • because Christmas has significance and tremendous meaning.
  • 00:14:00.110 --> 00:14:04.070
  • And I want you not just to be a bystander,
  • 00:14:04.070 --> 00:14:07.190
  • I want you to be a participant in this.
  • 00:14:07.190 --> 00:14:10.100
  • I want you to know Jesus as your personal Savior,
  • 00:14:10.100 --> 00:14:13.140
  • I want you to know him as your Lord,
  • 00:14:13.140 --> 00:14:15.040
  • that he came for you personally!
  • 00:14:15.040 --> 00:14:17.170
  • And that you can be saved.
  • 00:14:17.170 --> 00:14:19.150
  • And what a wonderful time to give your life to Christ
  • 00:14:19.150 --> 00:14:24.150
  • and to proclaim him as your Savior.
  • 00:14:25.190 --> 00:14:27.000
  • That's what his name means.
  • 00:14:27.000 --> 00:14:28.230
  • Jesus means God saves, wow!
  • 00:14:28.230 --> 00:14:32.290
  • Well, as I read to you in the Bible,
  • 00:14:34.080 --> 00:14:37.220
  • there are other names for Jesus too,
  • 00:14:37.220 --> 00:14:39.140
  • and I wanna continue with the meaning of Christmas,
  • 00:14:39.140 --> 00:14:41.140
  • but the primary meaning is that.
  • 00:14:41.140 --> 00:14:43.070
  • I want you to grab ahold of that.
  • 00:14:43.070 --> 00:14:44.150
  • We could stop the program right now,
  • 00:14:44.150 --> 00:14:46.110
  • but there's more to come because there's
  • 00:14:46.110 --> 00:14:47.210
  • much significance to Christmas.
  • 00:14:47.210 --> 00:14:49.250
  • And another name for Jesus is Emmanuel.
  • 00:14:49.250 --> 00:14:53.190
  • You've all heard that, it comes from the prophet Isaiah.
  • 00:14:53.190 --> 00:14:56.210
  • If you're in the Catholic Church,
  • 00:14:56.210 --> 00:14:58.040
  • or some of the mainstream Protestant churches,
  • 00:14:58.040 --> 00:15:00.090
  • Lutheranism, I believe, has it, and Methodism.
  • 00:15:00.090 --> 00:15:04.030
  • We have this song during Advent that's called
  • 00:15:04.030 --> 00:15:06.290
  • "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel," (plaintive music)
  • 00:15:08.100 --> 00:15:10.160
  • and we sing that, and we sing that, and we sing that.
  • 00:15:10.160 --> 00:15:13.040
  • That's simply another name for Jesus.
  • 00:15:13.040 --> 00:15:14.260
  • The word Emmanuel has meaning too,
  • 00:15:14.260 --> 00:15:17.030
  • and it means God with us, wow!
  • 00:15:17.030 --> 00:15:21.230
  • This is the meaning of Christmas, too.
  • 00:15:21.230 --> 00:15:24.080
  • That Jesus is our Savior, and that God is with us.
  • 00:15:24.080 --> 00:15:28.170
  • You see, this tender little baby,
  • 00:15:28.170 --> 00:15:31.230
  • this itsy bitsy little human being,
  • 00:15:31.230 --> 00:15:35.100
  • this vulnerable little innocent,
  • 00:15:35.100 --> 00:15:37.180
  • pure baby, has come among us.
  • 00:15:37.180 --> 00:15:42.070
  • The mighty God that spawned the heavens into being,
  • 00:15:42.070 --> 00:15:46.090
  • the eternal God who lived forever from all eternity,
  • 00:15:46.090 --> 00:15:50.070
  • suddenly, and because of an act of His own will,
  • 00:15:50.070 --> 00:15:54.090
  • has become a little baby,
  • 00:15:54.090 --> 00:15:55.240
  • Emmanuel, God with us.
  • 00:15:56.290 --> 00:16:00.020
  • Christmas is one of the hardest times for people.
  • 00:16:00.020 --> 00:16:03.130
  • For example, many people
  • 00:16:03.130 --> 00:16:04.260
  • during the year have lost their spouse,
  • 00:16:04.260 --> 00:16:07.080
  • and now they gotta go through their first Christmas alone.
  • 00:16:07.080 --> 00:16:10.210
  • Others have had breakups in the family,
  • 00:16:10.210 --> 00:16:13.270
  • others have family members that don't go to church,
  • 00:16:13.270 --> 00:16:17.140
  • who differ politically,
  • 00:16:17.140 --> 00:16:19.010
  • and you sit around the table and you talk
  • 00:16:19.010 --> 00:16:20.200
  • and there are all kinds of strifes and arguments.
  • 00:16:20.200 --> 00:16:23.100
  • Christmas can be one of the hardest times for people.
  • 00:16:23.100 --> 00:16:26.000
  • The depression rate at Christmastime rises in people,
  • 00:16:26.000 --> 00:16:29.280
  • because a lot of people gets depressed
  • 00:16:29.280 --> 00:16:31.120
  • because they remember how good it used to be,
  • 00:16:31.120 --> 00:16:33.050
  • and now it's not like that anymore,
  • 00:16:33.050 --> 00:16:35.000
  • or I lost my spouse, or people have fallen away,
  • 00:16:35.000 --> 00:16:37.170
  • and going through all these difficulties, depression rises.
  • 00:16:37.170 --> 00:16:40.140
  • Suicides rise during the Christmas time.
  • 00:16:40.140 --> 00:16:43.260
  • And what Emmanuel means,
  • 00:16:43.260 --> 00:16:46.120
  • and what this is proclaiming to us, that Jesus is Emmanuel,
  • 00:16:46.120 --> 00:16:49.290
  • is that he is with you to help you
  • 00:16:49.290 --> 00:16:54.290
  • through the hard times of your life,
  • 00:16:56.030 --> 00:16:59.180
  • and I want you to get that.
  • 00:16:59.180 --> 00:17:00.270
  • Are you grieving, have you just lost somebody?
  • 00:17:00.270 --> 00:17:04.120
  • Are you lonely, are you going through a difficult time?
  • 00:17:04.120 --> 00:17:07.290
  • Is Christmas really stressful for you?
  • 00:17:07.290 --> 00:17:10.130
  • Is it a hard time for you?
  • 00:17:10.130 --> 00:17:12.170
  • Well, Christmas is proclaiming,
  • 00:17:12.170 --> 00:17:14.170
  • you're not going through it alone.
  • 00:17:14.170 --> 00:17:16.080
  • Jesus will help you.
  • 00:17:17.080 --> 00:17:18.230
  • He will be your strength, he will get you through,
  • 00:17:20.060 --> 00:17:23.200
  • and as you go through, you will grow through!
  • 00:17:23.200 --> 00:17:26.070
  • And this is what the wonderful season is proclaiming.
  • 00:17:26.070 --> 00:17:29.020
  • This is what the word Emmanuel means, God with us.
  • 00:17:29.020 --> 00:17:32.200
  • And from all eternity, God wants to be with us.
  • 00:17:32.200 --> 00:17:35.150
  • In fact, in the book of Revelation,
  • 00:17:35.150 --> 00:17:37.060
  • when it talks about heaven,
  • 00:17:37.060 --> 00:17:38.200
  • it says that God will be our God,
  • 00:17:38.200 --> 00:17:40.160
  • He will wipe away every tear from our eyes,
  • 00:17:40.160 --> 00:17:42.260
  • that He will be with us for all eternity.
  • 00:17:42.260 --> 00:17:45.100
  • We were never meant to be separated from God!
  • 00:17:45.100 --> 00:17:48.140
  • And God's plan will not be thwarted!
  • 00:17:48.140 --> 00:17:51.170
  • And God's plan was, right from the beginning,
  • 00:17:51.170 --> 00:17:54.190
  • always been that He would be with us from all eternity,
  • 00:17:54.190 --> 00:17:57.230
  • He would be our God and we would be His people.
  • 00:17:57.230 --> 00:18:00.230
  • And now, He's got the plan, and this is the plan,
  • 00:18:00.230 --> 00:18:04.040
  • in the form of a little baby, Emmanuel, to bring us back.
  • 00:18:04.040 --> 00:18:08.220
  • Wow, I love the season of Christmas!
  • 00:18:08.220 --> 00:18:11.100
  • And because God is with us,
  • 00:18:11.100 --> 00:18:14.070
  • we can handle our sufferings,
  • 00:18:14.070 --> 00:18:17.060
  • we can face challenges,
  • 00:18:17.060 --> 00:18:20.040
  • we can dream dreams and accomplish them.
  • 00:18:20.040 --> 00:18:22.280
  • We can go through grieving,
  • 00:18:23.240 --> 00:18:26.000
  • we can forgive people that hurt us.
  • 00:18:26.000 --> 00:18:28.260
  • We can be more than a conqueror.
  • 00:18:28.260 --> 00:18:31.170
  • "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
  • 00:18:31.170 --> 00:18:35.290
  • Of course, that's one of the famous sayings
  • 00:18:35.290 --> 00:18:38.010
  • in the letter to the Philippians.
  • 00:18:38.010 --> 00:18:40.010
  • So what I'm simply trying to say
  • 00:18:40.010 --> 00:18:41.080
  • is that when we celebrate Christmas,
  • 00:18:41.080 --> 00:18:43.280
  • please realize that you're not alone!
  • 00:18:43.280 --> 00:18:45.230
  • Even if your family members have abandoned you,
  • 00:18:47.080 --> 00:18:49.060
  • even if you've lost your spouse,
  • 00:18:49.060 --> 00:18:51.080
  • even if nobody that you love even goes
  • 00:18:51.080 --> 00:18:53.000
  • to church anymore, you're not alone!
  • 00:18:53.000 --> 00:18:54.290
  • Emmanuel, God with us, wow!
  • 00:18:55.270 --> 00:18:59.260
  • That's the meaning of Christmas to me, I love it.
  • 00:18:59.260 --> 00:19:02.170
  • I remember when I was young,
  • 00:19:02.170 --> 00:19:03.250
  • I used to go to church on Christmas,
  • 00:19:03.250 --> 00:19:06.210
  • now I'm talking about when I was in my teenage years,
  • 00:19:06.210 --> 00:19:09.240
  • I would go to Christmas and I would go to Mass.
  • 00:19:09.240 --> 00:19:12.130
  • It's packed, you know, sometimes we'd get there on time
  • 00:19:12.130 --> 00:19:14.210
  • and we had to stand around the back of church
  • 00:19:14.210 --> 00:19:16.250
  • because so many people go on Christmas,
  • 00:19:16.250 --> 00:19:18.160
  • and I would always go there hoping
  • 00:19:18.160 --> 00:19:20.240
  • that something had changed.
  • 00:19:20.240 --> 00:19:23.170
  • Because whenever I would go to church as a young man,
  • 00:19:23.170 --> 00:19:26.100
  • it just seemed so boring, and it wouldn't meet my needs,
  • 00:19:26.100 --> 00:19:29.140
  • and I couldn't understand what was going on.
  • 00:19:29.140 --> 00:19:31.130
  • So I would go to Christmas and I'd see all the decorations
  • 00:19:31.130 --> 00:19:33.240
  • and see all the people, and I'd go there hoping,
  • 00:19:33.240 --> 00:19:35.200
  • why, I hope something's changed!
  • 00:19:35.200 --> 00:19:36.290
  • And I'd listen, and then, no.
  • 00:19:36.290 --> 00:19:39.090
  • It would be the same as it always was, it was just awful,
  • 00:19:39.090 --> 00:19:42.270
  • to me, at least where I went in Massachusetts.
  • 00:19:42.270 --> 00:19:45.160
  • I remember going one time to church,
  • 00:19:45.160 --> 00:19:46.280
  • and this is when I was a priest,
  • 00:19:46.280 --> 00:19:50.080
  • and I was sitting out in the pews.
  • 00:19:50.080 --> 00:19:51.150
  • There was a little girl in front of me,
  • 00:19:51.150 --> 00:19:52.290
  • a teenage girl, not little, she was a teenage girl.
  • 00:19:52.290 --> 00:19:56.080
  • Right after the homily, she turns to her mother,
  • 00:19:56.080 --> 00:19:58.000
  • she says, "Mom, I didn't get anything out of that!"
  • 00:19:58.000 --> 00:20:00.220
  • And I felt so bad for her.
  • 00:20:00.220 --> 00:20:02.210
  • Because here's this young girl,
  • 00:20:02.210 --> 00:20:04.060
  • she probably goes once or twice a year, who knows,
  • 00:20:04.060 --> 00:20:06.140
  • and here's this chance to proclaim faith
  • 00:20:06.140 --> 00:20:11.050
  • to her and attract her to Jesus, and she goes,
  • 00:20:11.050 --> 00:20:13.120
  • "I didn't get anything out of it," wow!
  • 00:20:13.120 --> 00:20:15.120
  • So in other words, what I'm saying is,
  • 00:20:16.170 --> 00:20:18.270
  • has anything changed in the Catholic Church,
  • 00:20:18.270 --> 00:20:21.080
  • or in churches in general?
  • 00:20:21.080 --> 00:20:22.290
  • And I want to proclaim to you, yes!
  • 00:20:24.010 --> 00:20:26.140
  • Our Pope Francis proclaimed
  • 00:20:27.130 --> 00:20:30.270
  • in one of his letters, he said,
  • 00:20:30.270 --> 00:20:34.240
  • "I invite people everywhere
  • 00:20:34.240 --> 00:20:38.030
  • "to a renewed personal relationship with Jesus Christ."
  • 00:20:39.150 --> 00:20:44.140
  • And I love that, because this is what church is all about,
  • 00:20:45.280 --> 00:20:47.080
  • and this is what Christmas is all about,
  • 00:20:47.080 --> 00:20:49.120
  • a relationship with Jesus Christ.
  • 00:20:49.120 --> 00:20:52.290
  • The Church now has an emphasis on joy,
  • 00:20:52.290 --> 00:20:56.200
  • on celebration, and on Jesus,
  • 00:20:56.200 --> 00:21:00.020
  • not so much ritual.
  • 00:21:00.020 --> 00:21:01.170
  • We do ritual, and we do the regulations and the rules
  • 00:21:01.170 --> 00:21:04.280
  • and the rubrics and all those R words, we do all that.
  • 00:21:04.280 --> 00:21:09.020
  • But the emphasis in the center of it all
  • 00:21:09.020 --> 00:21:11.160
  • is a relationship with Jesus.
  • 00:21:11.160 --> 00:21:14.010
  • If you have not been to church in a while,
  • 00:21:14.010 --> 00:21:16.190
  • because you don't think anything has changed,
  • 00:21:16.190 --> 00:21:19.210
  • I'm inviting you to come back, to give it a try.
  • 00:21:19.210 --> 00:21:23.240
  • We all get disappointed at times.
  • 00:21:23.240 --> 00:21:26.060
  • We can all get angry and upset because it's boring,
  • 00:21:26.060 --> 00:21:28.270
  • or it doesn't seem to meet our needs, but give it a new try.
  • 00:21:28.270 --> 00:21:32.280
  • Because church is about Jesus.
  • 00:21:32.280 --> 00:21:36.090
  • And at this Christmastime, this Christmas season,
  • 00:21:36.090 --> 00:21:39.120
  • we try to give you our best, and I'm gonna invite you
  • 00:21:39.120 --> 00:21:42.170
  • to make a move with Jesus, come back!
  • 00:21:42.170 --> 00:21:45.010
  • If there's been anything that has happened in your past,
  • 00:21:46.130 --> 00:21:49.250
  • maybe a priest was harsh to you in the confessional,
  • 00:21:49.250 --> 00:21:52.250
  • I don't know, or church was boring
  • 00:21:52.250 --> 00:21:55.020
  • and it didn't seem to work, I invite you to come back.
  • 00:21:55.020 --> 00:21:59.030
  • Give it another try, and let me say
  • 00:21:59.030 --> 00:22:01.000
  • on behalf of what has ever happened in the past,
  • 00:22:01.000 --> 00:22:03.230
  • I'm sorry that that happened, make a new start.
  • 00:22:03.230 --> 00:22:07.220
  • Christmas is a beautiful time for you to come on back.
  • 00:22:07.220 --> 00:22:11.130
  • So Christmas is about Emmanuel, it's about Jesus.
  • 00:22:11.130 --> 00:22:16.040
  • And I love what I just read to you from the prophet Isaiah.
  • 00:22:16.040 --> 00:22:19.030
  • "A son is born to us, he will be called Wonderful Counselor,
  • 00:22:20.170 --> 00:22:25.030
  • "Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."
  • 00:22:25.030 --> 00:22:29.160
  • A few facts about Christmas, of course,
  • 00:22:29.160 --> 00:22:31.270
  • the Son of God, eternal Word made flesh,
  • 00:22:31.270 --> 00:22:35.200
  • King of Kings, Lord of Lords.
  • 00:22:35.200 --> 00:22:37.190
  • Not born in a palace or a hospital,
  • 00:22:37.190 --> 00:22:42.030
  • but in an animal stable, stinky, dusty, dirty.
  • 00:22:42.030 --> 00:22:45.130
  • Not born to royalty, but to a peasant girl.
  • 00:22:45.130 --> 00:22:48.150
  • Not born in Jerusalem, but in the little town of Bethlehem.
  • 00:22:48.150 --> 00:22:51.250
  • Bethlehem means place of bread, house of bread.
  • 00:22:51.250 --> 00:22:54.120
  • He came to be our bread.
  • 00:22:54.120 --> 00:22:57.010
  • Who was invited to his birth?
  • 00:22:57.010 --> 00:22:59.000
  • Not King Herod, not the great high priest,
  • 00:22:59.000 --> 00:23:02.060
  • not all these religious people, the priests of Jerusalem.
  • 00:23:02.060 --> 00:23:05.090
  • Who was invited to the birth of Jesus?
  • 00:23:05.090 --> 00:23:07.260
  • Insignificant shepherds, (chuckles) people on the periphery!
  • 00:23:07.260 --> 00:23:12.010
  • Gentile, heathen, pagan Gentiles, the Magi.
  • 00:23:12.010 --> 00:23:16.120
  • They come from the East, because they see this star.
  • 00:23:16.120 --> 00:23:18.270
  • In other words, and this would take place
  • 00:23:18.270 --> 00:23:21.050
  • during Jesus' ministry,
  • 00:23:21.050 --> 00:23:22.270
  • he came for the people on the periphery!
  • 00:23:24.010 --> 00:23:25.280
  • He came for sinners, tax collectors, prostitutes,
  • 00:23:27.040 --> 00:23:31.140
  • those that are destitute, the poor,
  • 00:23:31.140 --> 00:23:34.000
  • those who had no religion.
  • 00:23:34.000 --> 00:23:36.000
  • He came for you and me!
  • 00:23:36.260 --> 00:23:38.100
  • Even if you're not the best,
  • 00:23:39.130 --> 00:23:40.190
  • even if you don't go to church all the time,
  • 00:23:40.190 --> 00:23:42.110
  • even if you do, he came for you and me.
  • 00:23:42.110 --> 00:23:45.050
  • And this is what we celebrate at Christmas.
  • 00:23:45.050 --> 00:23:47.270
  • Wise men from the East came, and as you know,
  • 00:23:47.270 --> 00:23:50.210
  • they came because they were searching, they were looking.
  • 00:23:50.210 --> 00:23:54.080
  • Never give up the search.
  • 00:23:54.080 --> 00:23:56.130
  • So Christmas is very personal, and I want you to get this.
  • 00:23:56.130 --> 00:24:01.060
  • Jesus, his name means Savior,
  • 00:24:01.060 --> 00:24:04.190
  • he came for you!
  • 00:24:04.190 --> 00:24:06.230
  • Personalize it, believe that he came for you,
  • 00:24:06.230 --> 00:24:09.020
  • he was born for you, he loves you!
  • 00:24:09.020 --> 00:24:11.240
  • And his name is Emmanuel,
  • 00:24:11.240 --> 00:24:14.120
  • he will walk with you no matter what.
  • 00:24:14.120 --> 00:24:17.040
  • He is with you, whatever you're going through.
  • 00:24:18.090 --> 00:24:21.000
  • And we celebrate this wonderful feast of Christmas.
  • 00:24:21.000 --> 00:24:23.170
  • And then of course, Christmas means
  • 00:24:23.170 --> 00:24:25.180
  • that he came for all people, whether you're Jewish,
  • 00:24:25.180 --> 00:24:29.290
  • Gentile, a believer, a nonbeliever, sinner,
  • 00:24:29.290 --> 00:24:33.250
  • righteous, it's all people that Jesus came for.
  • 00:24:33.250 --> 00:24:37.070
  • And so we celebrate Christmas.
  • 00:24:37.070 --> 00:24:38.280
  • This feast is magnificent,
  • 00:24:38.280 --> 00:24:41.230
  • has tremendous significance and meaning.
  • 00:24:41.230 --> 00:24:45.000
  • And on behalf of the Catholic Church,
  • 00:24:46.070 --> 00:24:49.140
  • behalf of my ministry, and certainly,
  • 00:24:49.140 --> 00:24:51.180
  • from the depths of my heart,
  • 00:24:51.180 --> 00:24:53.080
  • I want to wish you and all of yours
  • 00:24:53.080 --> 00:24:56.150
  • a very merry Christmas. (gentle music)
  • 00:24:56.150 --> 00:24:58.280
  • Don't just live, live with passion.
  • 00:24:58.280 --> 00:25:01.210
  • Merry Christmas, Jesus came for you personally,
  • 00:25:01.210 --> 00:25:04.050
  • and I hope that you'll receive him as your Savior.
  • 00:25:04.050 --> 00:25:07.090
  • One of the Christmas cards I like to give out is that
  • 00:25:07.090 --> 00:25:09.100
  • "He came to give us power
  • 00:25:09.100 --> 00:25:11.120
  • "to become children of God," that's from John chapter one.
  • 00:25:11.120 --> 00:25:14.200
  • I get all kinds of letters and cards.
  • 00:25:14.200 --> 00:25:16.060
  • Somebody sent me a thank you card, said,
  • 00:25:16.060 --> 00:25:18.140
  • "Father Cedric, you've brought light to our darkness."
  • 00:25:18.140 --> 00:25:20.220
  • That's exactly what Christmas does.
  • 00:25:20.220 --> 00:25:22.220
  • It brings light to our darkness.
  • 00:25:22.220 --> 00:25:24.190
  • Somebody else wrote me and said,
  • 00:25:24.190 --> 00:25:25.290
  • "Thanks for all that you've done.
  • 00:25:25.290 --> 00:25:27.170
  • "Your programs helped me to overcome a drug addiction," wow!
  • 00:25:27.170 --> 00:25:31.000
  • "Grow in faith, have a deeper understanding of the Word.
  • 00:25:31.000 --> 00:25:33.240
  • "Now I have a Bible study and I'm sharing with others
  • 00:25:33.240 --> 00:25:36.240
  • "what I've learned," that's so beautiful.
  • 00:25:36.240 --> 00:25:39.080
  • I have written all kinds of resources to help you,
  • 00:25:39.080 --> 00:25:42.260
  • 21 books to date, booklets.
  • 00:25:42.260 --> 00:25:45.150
  • Now if you're not going to church
  • 00:25:45.150 --> 00:25:46.270
  • or you're not too familiar with my ministry,
  • 00:25:46.270 --> 00:25:48.280
  • go to my website, frcedric.org.
  • 00:25:48.280 --> 00:25:51.050
  • You can order those resources, and I have free downloads.
  • 00:25:51.050 --> 00:25:54.180
  • You can download my first book for free off the website,
  • 00:25:54.180 --> 00:25:57.290
  • booklets to help you to grow.
  • 00:25:57.290 --> 00:25:59.270
  • I want you to develop a personal relationship with Jesus.
  • 00:25:59.270 --> 00:26:03.050
  • So thank you in advance for your support.
  • 00:26:03.050 --> 00:26:05.260
  • I appreciate it when you buy my resources.
  • 00:26:05.260 --> 00:26:07.250
  • That really supports my ministry
  • 00:26:07.250 --> 00:26:09.110
  • so that I can reach out to all people
  • 00:26:09.110 --> 00:26:11.280
  • with the imperishable message of the Good News.
  • 00:26:11.280 --> 00:26:14.140
  • It's Christmas, I want you to receive Jesus,
  • 00:26:14.140 --> 00:26:18.010
  • and I want you to know him as Emmanuel,
  • 00:26:18.010 --> 00:26:19.270
  • with you in everything that you do.
  • 00:26:19.270 --> 00:26:22.050
  • God bless you and merry Christmas!
  • 00:26:22.050 --> 00:26:24.030
  • - [Announcer] Discover your purpose, be energized,
  • 00:26:24.030 --> 00:26:27.120
  • realize your potential, live God's will.
  • 00:26:27.120 --> 00:26:31.130
  • Father Cedric's books, DVDs, and CDs
  • 00:26:31.130 --> 00:26:34.190
  • will inspire you to live passionately.
  • 00:26:34.190 --> 00:26:37.200
  • Make a move right now
  • 00:26:37.200 --> 00:26:39.090
  • and purchase these inspiring resources!
  • 00:26:39.090 --> 00:26:42.020
  • Simply ask for the DVDs or CDs
  • 00:26:42.020 --> 00:26:44.250
  • to series number 444,
  • 00:26:44.250 --> 00:26:46.210
  • entitled "God Makes All Work to Good,"
  • 00:26:47.280 --> 00:26:51.120
  • or ask for the book that was talked about!
  • 00:26:51.120 --> 00:26:54.000
  • To order, simply call 844-FATHERC.
  • 00:26:54.000 --> 00:26:58.090
  • That's 844-328-4372.
  • 00:26:58.090 --> 00:27:03.110
  • Write us at Fr. Cedric Ministries,
  • 00:27:04.160 --> 00:27:06.120
  • 430 Bunker Hill Road,
  • 00:27:06.120 --> 00:27:09.020
  • Houston, Texas, 77024.
  • 00:27:09.020 --> 00:27:13.030
  • Or log onto www.frcedric.org.
  • 00:27:13.030 --> 00:27:18.030
  • That's www.frcedric.org.
  • 00:27:18.250 --> 00:27:20.110
  • Today is the day to make a change in your life
  • 00:27:25.090 --> 00:27:28.090
  • and become all that you can be.
  • 00:27:28.090 --> 00:27:29.280