The Response to Christmas | TBN

The Response to Christmas

Watch The Response to Christmas
December 15, 2019
27:29

Turning Point with Dr. David Jeremiah

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The Response to Christmas

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  • male announcer: We often look back at Christmases
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  • of the past with a special fondness.
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  • Memories of giving and receiving cherished gifts,
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  • meaningful time spent with those we love,
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  • moments savoring a meal to mark the occasion.
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  • Minutes where all is right become precious mementos
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  • of our past.
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  • While time moves on, the world around us shifts and we change.
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  • Christmas doesn't have to.
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  • Your best Christmas ever is ready for you to make.
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  • Family, friends, and festivities can be a part of that which
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  • makes the holiday special, but the best Christmas ever
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  • is the one where Christ is in its center.
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  • The greatest Christmas planning was God's on the very first,
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  • when God sent his Son to earth, the ultimate present
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  • to his children.
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  • Dr. David Jeremiah: I'm David Jeremiah
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  • with a Christmas question to ask you.
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  • What is the central part of family Christmas celebrations?
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  • There are many good answers to that question,
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  • but I believe the exchange of gifts is near the top
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  • of the list because of what gift giving represents.
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  • For the giver, a gift represents generosity,
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  • maybe even sacrifice,
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  • and for the recipient,
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  • a gift brings out feelings of gratitude and humility.
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  • These responses to family gift giving our perfect mirrors
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  • for how we should respond to the gift God gave
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  • to the world on that first Christmas.
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  • God's generosity and sacrifice should create gratitude
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  • and humility in each one of us.
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  • In today's message, which I call,
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  • "The Response To Christmas", we'll examine four responses
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  • we can find in the story of the first Christmas.
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  • So, join me as we discover them together
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  • on today's Christmas edition of, "Turning Point."
  • 00:02:00.190 --> 00:02:04.030
  • 00:02:04.060 --> 00:02:06.210
  • female announcer: Imagine if you could've walked
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  • with Christ when he was here on earth.
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  • What would you have learned being close to him?
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  • How would you have felt?
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  • You can have the same relationship with him today.
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  • How?
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  • By seeking him out and learning from his Word.
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  • Let David Jeremiah help you develop a closer walk with God
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  • this coming year with, "Daily in His Presence,"
  • 00:02:29.220 --> 00:02:34.040
  • a new 365-day devotional for 2020.
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  • Each day's short reading in this beautiful
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  • leather-bound devotional provides Scripture
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  • and a spiritual thought to encourage you, challenge you,
  • 00:02:43.260 --> 00:02:47.230
  • and focus your attention on God so you can experience
  • 00:02:47.240 --> 00:02:51.150
  • God's will in your life and enter into the company
  • 00:02:51.160 --> 00:02:54.240
  • of the Savior.
  • 00:02:54.250 --> 00:02:57.000
  • The ideal companion to your Bible study,
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  • request your copy of, "Daily in His Presence",
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  • for a gift of any amount.
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  • This devotional is also perfect for sharing with others.
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  • And with a generous year-end gift of $120 or more,
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  • in support of this program, you'll receive a four-pack of,
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  • "Daily in His Presence" so that you can give
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  • your loved ones a copy and help them walk ever closer
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  • to God in the coming year.
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  • Support the ministry of Turning Point
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  • before the end of the year, and Dr. Jeremiah will send you
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  • in appreciation, "Daily in His Presence."
  • 00:03:26.250 --> 00:03:30.120
  • Contact Turning Point today.
  • 00:03:30.130 --> 00:03:32.030
  • 00:03:34.120 --> 00:03:40.120
  • Dr. Jeremiah: If there's ever a season of the year
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  • when we learn that it's more fun to give than it is to receive,
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  • this is the season and the older we get,
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  • the more that is true.
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  • The joy is in giving and not receiving.
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  • And I'd like to suggest to you that one of the ways
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  • we can respond to Christmas is through the sacrifice of giving.
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  • Few of us have riches like the wise men.
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  • The calculation of their gifts has been done by many before me,
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  • and it is quite astonishing what they gave to the Lord.
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  • But what matters most, men and women,
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  • is not how much we have, but what we do
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  • with what we have.
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  • One last thought about the wise men and their generosity,
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  • here's what you learn when you study their story,
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  • they gave of their time.
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  • They invested two years of their time to get to Jesus.
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  • They gave their talent.
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  • These were wise men, they used their wisdom
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  • to seek out the place where the Savior was to be born
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  • and they gave their treasure.
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  • Time, talent, and treasure are still the gold standard
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  • of worshiping God and giving to him.
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  • All of us have some of each.
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  • We all have time, we all have our talents,
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  • and we all have some treasures.
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  • And when we respond to Christmas, we ask ourselves,
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  • what are we doing with what God has given to us
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  • to advance the cause of Christ in the world where we live?
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  • And then, the story of the shepherds gives us
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  • another clue as to how to respond to Christmas.
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  • We're told about that story in Luke chapter 2,
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  • verses 8 through 20, and we're not going to read
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  • the whole story but we're going to start at the end of the story
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  • where we read these words.
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  • "So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven,
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  • that the shepherds said to one another,
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  • 'Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that
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  • has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.'
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  • And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph,
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  • and the Babe lying in a manger.
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  • Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known
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  • the saying which was told them concerning this Child.
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  • And all those who heard it marveled at those things
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  • which were told them by the shepherds.
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  • And Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.
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  • Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God
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  • for all the things that they had heard and seen,
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  • as it was told them."
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  • The shepherds are continually an enigma.
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  • The shepherds frankly don't belong in this story.
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  • Only God had the editorial right to put them in there,
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  • but he did.
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  • My friend Warren Wiersbe was invited to speak
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  • at the graduation ceremony of a well-known seminary,
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  • and he gave the budding pastors something to think about
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  • when he told this story, "A promising college senior
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  • at an acclaimed Ivy League university was undergoing
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  • a battery of personality and aptitude tests
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  • offered by the career placement office at school.
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  • He was from a blue blood aristocratic family
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  • who expected him to take the high road
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  • into the upper strata of society when he graduated.
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  • He was on the edge of his seat as the counselor announced
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  • the results of his test.
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  • Hudson, I have good news, the tests are absolutely
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  • consistent and conclusive in their findings.
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  • Upon graduation, the ideal path for you to pursue is to become,
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  • what Hudson thought would be a doctor,
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  • a lawyer, or a banker.
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  • The ideal path for you to pursue,
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  • said the counselor, is to become a shepherd."
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  • A shepherd?
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  • I don't have to paint a picture for you
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  • of the rest of that story.
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  • I just imagine the astonishment when a future member
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  • of the family looks at the family tree
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  • and sees among the doctors, lawyers, judges, and others,
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  • Hudson Meriwether Prestigious IV 1965 to 2050, shepherd,
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  • or imagine the great hall of prestigious portraits.
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  • The walls are covered with oil paintings of past luminaries
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  • and judges's robes, doctors's white coats,
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  • expensive three-piece suits, and then there's Hudson
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  • in a dirt-covered pair of jeans, a soiled T-shirt,
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  • sweat-stained hat standing in the middle of a herd
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  • of hapless and helpless sheep.
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  • Can you say this disconnect?
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  • I mean no disrespect if you happen to be
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  • a shepherd here today, but in biblical days,
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  • the shepherds were considered the lowliest of the low
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  • in society.
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  • So, it continues to fascinate me that out of all of Israel,
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  • God chose to reveal himself through his Son, first of all,
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  • to the shepherds.
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  • And it was not enough for the shepherds to hear
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  • the message of hope from the angels.
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  • The message required a response, and each of these men
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  • had to make a decision to follow the instructions of the angel.
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  • The Shepherd's were the first worshipers
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  • and evangelists of Jesus Christ in history.
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  • They model what we are to do today.
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  • We're to worship him, we're to bow before him
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  • in humility and simplicity, then were to tell others
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  • the good news that he has come.
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  • We are to make widely known, according to the Scripture,
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  • the saying concerning this child.
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  • After seeing Jesus, as the shepherds
  • 00:09:00.230 --> 00:09:02.280
  • left the manger, they told everyone
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  • in their path of the things that had happened to them.
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  • The shepherds teach us what we are already
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  • in the process of learning, that worshiping Christ
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  • is impossible without serving Christ,
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  • and one of the ways we serve Christ is
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  • by telling others about him.
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  • It's not a rocket science study.
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  • It's just telling them what God has done for you.
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  • Many of you have done that already during this season,
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  • but what a wonderful response to Christmas.
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  • Go tell somebody what God has done for you.
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  • Go share with somebody how blessed you are to be called
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  • a Christian and what it means to you personally.
  • 00:09:44.230 --> 00:09:48.240
  • And then, the third response is in the life of Joseph.
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  • Once again, Joseph is told this unbelievable story.
  • 00:09:53.020 --> 00:09:58.280
  • He's told the story of what's going to happen.
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  • It is hard for him to comprehend.
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  • When we meet Joseph,
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  • he's in the midst of a crisis in his life,
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  • one of the most incredible crises in the story of humanity.
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  • He's called upon to marry a pregnant virgin,
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  • to bear the scorn and absorb the burdens of raising
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  • the man of sorrows.
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  • Several years ago, Maxwell Lucado and I,
  • 00:10:19.180 --> 00:10:21.210
  • along with some other friends, put together a little Christmas
  • 00:10:21.220 --> 00:10:24.100
  • book containing some of our favorite Christmas sermons.
  • 00:10:24.110 --> 00:10:28.110
  • With his typical freshness, Max described Joseph
  • 00:10:28.120 --> 00:10:30.260
  • as being caught between what God says and what makes sense.
  • 00:10:30.270 --> 00:10:37.150
  • Have you ever been caught between what you know
  • 00:10:37.160 --> 00:10:39.100
  • God is saying and what makes sense to you?
  • 00:10:39.110 --> 00:10:43.000
  • Yet, he didn't let his confusion disrupt his obedience.
  • 00:10:43.010 --> 00:10:47.000
  • He didn't know everything, but he did know what he knew.
  • 00:10:47.010 --> 00:10:51.090
  • And he shut down his business, and picked up his family,
  • 00:10:51.100 --> 00:10:54.220
  • and went to another country because that is
  • 00:10:54.230 --> 00:10:57.070
  • what God said to do.
  • 00:10:57.080 --> 00:11:01.010
  • There's no record in Matthew's account
  • 00:11:01.020 --> 00:11:02.210
  • of Joseph speaking one single word
  • 00:11:02.220 --> 00:11:05.020
  • in the narrative of Christmas,
  • 00:11:05.030 --> 00:11:06.290
  • but we have something more important than his words.
  • 00:11:07.000 --> 00:11:09.220
  • We have the record of his obedience.
  • 00:11:09.230 --> 00:11:12.090
  • And we read in verses 24 and 25 of Matthew 1,
  • 00:11:12.100 --> 00:11:16.000
  • "Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep,
  • 00:11:16.010 --> 00:11:18.190
  • did as the angel of the Lord commanded him
  • 00:11:18.200 --> 00:11:21.070
  • and took to him his wife, and did not know her
  • 00:11:21.080 --> 00:11:24.040
  • till she had brought forth her firstborn Son.
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  • And he called His name Jesus."
  • 00:11:26.270 --> 00:11:29.120
  • As practically hard and publicly humiliating
  • 00:11:30.170 --> 00:11:34.090
  • as it might have been, Joseph silently obeyed
  • 00:11:34.100 --> 00:11:39.110
  • God's instructions.
  • 00:11:39.120 --> 00:11:42.060
  • Men and women, obedience is not usually a public thing, is it?
  • 00:11:42.070 --> 00:11:46.110
  • It's what we hear God say to us and we do it.
  • 00:11:46.120 --> 00:11:50.220
  • It usually doesn't get up on the marquee.
  • 00:11:50.230 --> 00:11:52.260
  • Nobody knows about it except for us,
  • 00:11:52.270 --> 00:11:54.270
  • and in our hearts we know.
  • 00:11:54.280 --> 00:11:57.010
  • We know when we say yes to God and we know
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  • when we don't answer God, which is like saying no.
  • 00:11:59.100 --> 00:12:04.130
  • And Joseph illustrates for us the power of responding
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  • to Christmas with silent obedience
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  • to what God is speaking to us in our hearts.
  • 00:12:10.160 --> 00:12:14.040
  • And then, finally, we come to the center of the story
  • 00:12:14.050 --> 00:12:17.120
  • apart from Jesus, and that's the person, Mary.
  • 00:12:17.130 --> 00:12:21.030
  • Mary's story is well-known to all of us,
  • 00:12:21.040 --> 00:12:24.230
  • and she is told that she's going to be the mother
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  • of the Lord Jesus.
  • 00:12:27.100 --> 00:12:30.080
  • And when she hears this, she responds
  • 00:12:30.090 --> 00:12:33.260
  • as we would respond.
  • 00:12:33.270 --> 00:12:35.280
  • "Then Mary said to the angel, 'How can this be,
  • 00:12:35.290 --> 00:12:39.030
  • since I do not know a man?'"
  • 00:12:39.040 --> 00:12:40.200
  • In other words, "How can I have a child?
  • 00:12:40.210 --> 00:12:42.040
  • I've never been with a man."
  • 00:12:42.050 --> 00:12:44.230
  • "And the angel answered and said to her,
  • 00:12:44.240 --> 00:12:46.150
  • 'The Holy Spirit will come upon you,
  • 00:12:46.160 --> 00:12:48.050
  • and the power of the Highest will overshadow you;
  • 00:12:48.060 --> 00:12:51.150
  • therefore, that Holy One who is to be born
  • 00:12:51.160 --> 00:12:55.050
  • will be called the Son of God.
  • 00:12:55.060 --> 00:12:56.240
  • And indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived
  • 00:12:56.250 --> 00:12:59.140
  • a son in her old age; and this is now
  • 00:12:59.150 --> 00:13:01.090
  • the sixth month for her who was called barren.
  • 00:13:01.100 --> 00:13:03.160
  • For with God nothing will be impossible.'
  • 00:13:03.170 --> 00:13:07.290
  • "And Mary said--" here is her response,
  • 00:13:08.000 --> 00:13:11.050
  • 'Behold the maidservant of the Lord!
  • 00:13:11.060 --> 00:13:14.180
  • Let it be to me according to your word.'
  • 00:13:14.190 --> 00:13:18.230
  • And the angel departed from her."
  • 00:13:18.240 --> 00:13:21.230
  • The last personality in our little personality profile
  • 00:13:21.240 --> 00:13:25.280
  • is Mary, and the record of Mary's response
  • 00:13:25.290 --> 00:13:29.040
  • is one of the great stories of the Bible.
  • 00:13:29.050 --> 00:13:32.200
  • Mary was not perfect, Luke tells us
  • 00:13:32.210 --> 00:13:35.060
  • that she was highly favored, but she was chosen
  • 00:13:35.070 --> 00:13:38.100
  • from all the women in the world to be the one woman
  • 00:13:38.110 --> 00:13:41.150
  • through whom God would send his Son into human flesh.
  • 00:13:41.160 --> 00:13:45.170
  • Up until this particular day, Mary probably lived
  • 00:13:45.180 --> 00:13:48.150
  • a very normal life, and then, in the midst of routine,
  • 00:13:48.160 --> 00:13:51.270
  • a single supernatural moment shattered the normality
  • 00:13:51.280 --> 00:13:55.090
  • of her life and the angel stood before her.
  • 00:13:55.100 --> 00:13:57.280
  • When did it happen?
  • 00:13:57.290 --> 00:13:59.200
  • Perhaps while Mary was kneeling beside her bed
  • 00:13:59.210 --> 00:14:02.060
  • attending to prayers, beginning or finishing a day.
  • 00:14:02.070 --> 00:14:05.250
  • How frightening the sudden arrival of a heavenly messenger
  • 00:14:05.260 --> 00:14:08.130
  • must have been for peasant girl.
  • 00:14:08.140 --> 00:14:12.030
  • Gabriel's appearance frightened Mary.
  • 00:14:12.040 --> 00:14:15.060
  • When he saw how afraid she was, he assured her there was
  • 00:14:15.070 --> 00:14:17.220
  • no reason for fear, for the news he was bringing was wonderful.
  • 00:14:17.230 --> 00:14:21.250
  • She was about to be blessed among all the women
  • 00:14:21.260 --> 00:14:24.090
  • of the world.
  • 00:14:24.100 --> 00:14:25.190
  • She would have a son who would be the Son of the Most High.
  • 00:14:25.200 --> 00:14:30.050
  • Consider the change that came about in Mary's life.
  • 00:14:30.060 --> 00:14:34.290
  • Thoughts of marriage turned to thoughts of motherhood,
  • 00:14:35.000 --> 00:14:39.090
  • and thoughts of a quiet ordinary life turned to the anticipation
  • 00:14:39.100 --> 00:14:42.100
  • of being at the center of a spectacular miracle from heaven.
  • 00:14:42.110 --> 00:14:48.060
  • No wonder God sent Gabriel to help her understand
  • 00:14:48.070 --> 00:14:50.170
  • and get ready.
  • 00:14:50.180 --> 00:14:53.130
  • As the exclamation of her role and redemption began
  • 00:14:53.140 --> 00:14:56.070
  • to take hold of her heart, Mary responded
  • 00:14:56.080 --> 00:14:59.130
  • with these words, don't ever forget these words.
  • 00:14:59.140 --> 00:15:02.090
  • These are not just words for Mary,
  • 00:15:02.100 --> 00:15:04.120
  • these are words for us.
  • 00:15:04.130 --> 00:15:07.160
  • "Behold the maidservant of the Lord!
  • 00:15:07.170 --> 00:15:11.180
  • Let it be to me according to your word."
  • 00:15:11.190 --> 00:15:15.040
  • In other words, "Lord God, whatever you got in mind,
  • 00:15:15.050 --> 00:15:18.280
  • count me in, I'm in."
  • 00:15:18.290 --> 00:15:20.290
  • I marvel at her submissive attitude to the will of God.
  • 00:15:22.290 --> 00:15:26.230
  • In that particular day, for a woman to be pregnant
  • 00:15:26.240 --> 00:15:29.130
  • out of wedlock, especially a Jewish woman,
  • 00:15:29.140 --> 00:15:32.140
  • could cost her her life.
  • 00:15:32.150 --> 00:15:34.260
  • Adultery was punished by stoning.
  • 00:15:34.270 --> 00:15:38.190
  • She knew that she would be the laughingstock of her community,
  • 00:15:38.200 --> 00:15:41.240
  • and the byword of every idle conversation.
  • 00:15:41.250 --> 00:15:45.240
  • She knew that people wouldn't understand.
  • 00:15:45.250 --> 00:15:47.230
  • She wondered in her heart about Joseph to whom she was engaged.
  • 00:15:47.240 --> 00:15:51.120
  • But in spite of all that, because God had spoken,
  • 00:15:51.130 --> 00:15:54.220
  • Mary submitted and said,
  • 00:15:54.230 --> 00:15:56.020
  • "Lord, whatever it is that you want, I am willing."
  • 00:15:56.030 --> 00:16:01.270
  • You see the thread that runs
  • 00:16:01.280 --> 00:16:03.170
  • through all four of these narratives?
  • 00:16:03.180 --> 00:16:06.100
  • The wise men obeyed and brought their gifts,
  • 00:16:06.110 --> 00:16:09.040
  • theirs was an obedience of sacrifice.
  • 00:16:09.050 --> 00:16:12.120
  • The shepherds obeyed, came to the manger,
  • 00:16:12.130 --> 00:16:15.130
  • praising and glorifying God.
  • 00:16:15.140 --> 00:16:17.190
  • Theirs was the obedience of service.
  • 00:16:17.200 --> 00:16:21.010
  • Joseph quietly accepted the incredible story
  • 00:16:21.020 --> 00:16:23.280
  • of Mary's pregnancy, and did what he was asked
  • 00:16:23.290 --> 00:16:26.180
  • to do and his was the obedience of silence.
  • 00:16:26.190 --> 00:16:30.180
  • Mary said, "Let it be to me according to your Word."
  • 00:16:30.190 --> 00:16:34.000
  • Hers was the obedience of submission.
  • 00:16:34.010 --> 00:16:38.250
  • Is it not time for you to respond to the Christmas message
  • 00:16:38.260 --> 00:16:42.030
  • by submitting to God's kindness, and if you have yet to do so,
  • 00:16:42.040 --> 00:16:46.170
  • receiving Christ as your Lord and Savior?
  • 00:16:46.180 --> 00:16:50.170
  • And is it not for us, who are Christians,
  • 00:16:50.180 --> 00:16:54.020
  • a great opportunity to take inventory in our own lives?
  • 00:16:54.030 --> 00:16:59.020
  • "How am I doing, Lord?
  • 00:16:59.030 --> 00:17:02.070
  • How am I doing with submission to your will
  • 00:17:02.080 --> 00:17:04.210
  • when I don't even understand it?
  • 00:17:04.220 --> 00:17:07.010
  • How am I doing in serving you?
  • 00:17:07.020 --> 00:17:09.010
  • How am I doing in saying yes
  • 00:17:09.020 --> 00:17:10.190
  • when it doesn't make sense to me?
  • 00:17:10.200 --> 00:17:12.250
  • How am I doing in the sacrifice of my time, talent,
  • 00:17:12.260 --> 00:17:18.290
  • and treasure?"
  • 00:17:19.000 --> 00:17:21.240
  • And for those who do not know the Lord Jesus Christ,
  • 00:17:21.250 --> 00:17:24.120
  • there can only be one thing important and that is
  • 00:17:24.130 --> 00:17:28.130
  • to understand that behind all of the imagery and pageantry
  • 00:17:28.140 --> 00:17:32.210
  • of this season is a true story of a God in heaven,
  • 00:17:32.220 --> 00:17:36.280
  • who loved us so much that he gave to us the greatest treasure
  • 00:17:36.290 --> 00:17:41.030
  • heaven had, the only begotten Son of the Father
  • 00:17:41.040 --> 00:17:46.000
  • who came to this world and went to the cross
  • 00:17:46.010 --> 00:17:49.000
  • to die for us so that we could be forgiven.
  • 00:17:49.010 --> 00:17:52.040
  • The story of redemption begins in Bethlehem
  • 00:17:52.050 --> 00:17:55.200
  • when God became flesh, when Christ came to be
  • 00:17:55.210 --> 00:17:59.270
  • one of us, to join into the humanity experience,
  • 00:17:59.280 --> 00:18:05.190
  • and ultimately in his humaneness,
  • 00:18:05.200 --> 00:18:08.190
  • go to the cross, not leaving anything of his divinity behind.
  • 00:18:08.200 --> 00:18:13.270
  • And on that day outside of Jerusalem,
  • 00:18:13.280 --> 00:18:16.090
  • God died in his Son's body so that
  • 00:18:16.100 --> 00:18:20.230
  • you and I could be set free.
  • 00:18:20.240 --> 00:18:24.250
  • I know that most of us have some inkling of that story,
  • 00:18:24.260 --> 00:18:29.290
  • but we are living, men and women,
  • 00:18:30.000 --> 00:18:32.020
  • in what most people call the post Christian era.
  • 00:18:32.030 --> 00:18:37.080
  • Things that we understood normally,
  • 00:18:37.090 --> 00:18:40.000
  • just because we grew up in America,
  • 00:18:40.010 --> 00:18:42.080
  • no longer exist in our thinking process.
  • 00:18:42.090 --> 00:18:45.170
  • Even young people who grow up in Christian homes
  • 00:18:45.180 --> 00:18:49.190
  • are not taught the main stories of the Bible.
  • 00:18:49.200 --> 00:18:54.050
  • So, I want to conclude with a human story
  • 00:18:54.060 --> 00:18:57.140
  • that illustrates this incredible God story.
  • 00:18:57.150 --> 00:19:03.070
  • During the reign of Russian Tsar Nicholas I,
  • 00:19:03.080 --> 00:19:08.100
  • there was a young man in his army whose father
  • 00:19:08.110 --> 00:19:11.020
  • was one of his close friends.
  • 00:19:11.030 --> 00:19:13.220
  • Because of that relationship, this young man was given
  • 00:19:13.230 --> 00:19:15.260
  • a very responsible post.
  • 00:19:15.270 --> 00:19:18.060
  • He was the paymaster of one of the barracks
  • 00:19:18.070 --> 00:19:20.060
  • for the Russian army, and it was his responsibility
  • 00:19:20.070 --> 00:19:23.230
  • to see that the right amount of money was distributed
  • 00:19:23.240 --> 00:19:26.000
  • each month to the soldiers.
  • 00:19:26.010 --> 00:19:28.280
  • The young man meant well, but his character
  • 00:19:28.290 --> 00:19:31.150
  • was not up to his responsibility.
  • 00:19:31.160 --> 00:19:34.050
  • He began to gamble and, eventually,
  • 00:19:34.060 --> 00:19:36.260
  • he gambled away most of his own money
  • 00:19:36.270 --> 00:19:39.160
  • and a great deal of the government's money.
  • 00:19:39.170 --> 00:19:43.260
  • In due course, the young man received notice
  • 00:19:43.270 --> 00:19:46.100
  • that a representative of tsar was coming to check
  • 00:19:46.110 --> 00:19:48.280
  • the accounts, and he knew that he was in trouble.
  • 00:19:48.290 --> 00:19:54.020
  • That evening, he got out the books
  • 00:19:54.030 --> 00:19:55.240
  • and totaled up the funds that were owed.
  • 00:19:55.250 --> 00:19:58.000
  • Then he went to the safe and got out his own pitifully
  • 00:19:58.010 --> 00:20:00.230
  • small amount of money and as he sat there
  • 00:20:00.240 --> 00:20:02.190
  • and he looked at the two, he was overwhelmed
  • 00:20:02.200 --> 00:20:05.070
  • at the astronomical debt that he had built up
  • 00:20:05.080 --> 00:20:08.070
  • versus his own small change.
  • 00:20:08.080 --> 00:20:11.130
  • He was a ruined man.
  • 00:20:11.140 --> 00:20:13.270
  • He knew he would be disgraced.
  • 00:20:13.280 --> 00:20:16.090
  • At last, he determined the only way for him was
  • 00:20:16.100 --> 00:20:20.040
  • to take his life.
  • 00:20:20.050 --> 00:20:22.010
  • He pulled out his revolver, placed it on the table
  • 00:20:22.020 --> 00:20:25.090
  • in front of him, and wrote a summation
  • 00:20:25.100 --> 00:20:27.130
  • of his misdeeds.
  • 00:20:27.140 --> 00:20:29.120
  • At the bottom of the ledger, which he had totaled up
  • 00:20:29.130 --> 00:20:32.070
  • his illegal borrowings, he wrote,
  • 00:20:32.080 --> 00:20:34.290
  • "A great debt, who can pay?"
  • 00:20:35.000 --> 00:20:38.100
  • And he determined that at the stroke of midnight,
  • 00:20:38.110 --> 00:20:40.280
  • he would die.
  • 00:20:40.290 --> 00:20:43.130
  • As the evening wore on, the young soldier grew drowsy
  • 00:20:43.140 --> 00:20:46.210
  • and eventually fell asleep.
  • 00:20:46.220 --> 00:20:49.210
  • That night, Tsar Nicholas I, as was sometimes his custom,
  • 00:20:49.220 --> 00:20:53.060
  • was making the rounds of this particular barracks.
  • 00:20:53.070 --> 00:20:56.230
  • Seeing a light, he stopped and looked in,
  • 00:20:56.240 --> 00:20:58.270
  • and knowing this young man,
  • 00:20:58.280 --> 00:21:00.280
  • he recognized him immediately.
  • 00:21:00.290 --> 00:21:03.070
  • And noting that he was asleep, he looked over his shoulder
  • 00:21:03.080 --> 00:21:06.110
  • and saw the ledger book and realized
  • 00:21:06.120 --> 00:21:09.130
  • all that had taken place.
  • 00:21:09.140 --> 00:21:12.110
  • He was about to awaken this young man and put him
  • 00:21:12.120 --> 00:21:14.230
  • under arrest when his eye fastened
  • 00:21:14.240 --> 00:21:16.290
  • on the young man's words at the bottom of the page,
  • 00:21:17.000 --> 00:21:21.040
  • "A great debt, who can pay?"
  • 00:21:21.050 --> 00:21:25.090
  • Suddenly, with a surge of grace and mercy, he reached over,
  • 00:21:25.100 --> 00:21:29.010
  • he wrote one word at the bottom of the ledger,
  • 00:21:29.020 --> 00:21:31.120
  • and he slipped out.
  • 00:21:31.130 --> 00:21:34.020
  • The young man was sleeping fitfully,
  • 00:21:34.030 --> 00:21:35.270
  • and he awoke suddenly in the middle of the night,
  • 00:21:35.280 --> 00:21:37.240
  • glanced at the clock and realized
  • 00:21:37.250 --> 00:21:39.080
  • it was long after midnight.
  • 00:21:39.090 --> 00:21:41.020
  • He reached for his revolver, but as he did,
  • 00:21:41.030 --> 00:21:43.210
  • his eye fell on the ledger.
  • 00:21:43.220 --> 00:21:45.250
  • He saw something that he had not seen before.
  • 00:21:45.260 --> 00:21:48.070
  • There was his writing, "A great debt, who can pay?"
  • 00:21:48.080 --> 00:21:52.230
  • But underneath was the word the Tsar had written,
  • 00:21:52.240 --> 00:21:57.260
  • "Nicholas I, He could pay."
  • 00:21:57.270 --> 00:22:02.210
  • He was dumbfounded.
  • 00:22:02.220 --> 00:22:04.030
  • He did not understand how it could have gotten there.
  • 00:22:04.040 --> 00:22:05.290
  • He must have made a mistake.
  • 00:22:06.000 --> 00:22:07.210
  • He went to the safe where material bore the signature
  • 00:22:07.220 --> 00:22:10.150
  • of Tsar, and it was the Tsar's signature.
  • 00:22:10.160 --> 00:22:14.250
  • He said to himself, "He must have come when I was asleep.
  • 00:22:14.260 --> 00:22:18.160
  • He has seen the book, he knows all,
  • 00:22:18.170 --> 00:22:20.220
  • and he's willing to forgive me."
  • 00:22:20.230 --> 00:22:23.030
  • And the next morning a messenger came from the palace
  • 00:22:23.040 --> 00:22:25.130
  • with the amount of money needed to meet the deficit
  • 00:22:25.140 --> 00:22:28.190
  • only the Tsar could pay, and the Tsar did pay.
  • 00:22:28.200 --> 00:22:33.200
  • In the same way, only the Lord Jesus Christ
  • 00:22:34.100 --> 00:22:38.160
  • was able to pay our debt to God.
  • 00:22:38.170 --> 00:22:41.290
  • We look at the moral requirement of God's righteousness
  • 00:22:42.000 --> 00:22:45.060
  • spelled out in his book, and we compare it
  • 00:22:45.070 --> 00:22:48.030
  • with our own tawdry performance and we ask a question,
  • 00:22:48.040 --> 00:22:52.260
  • "A great debt, who can pay?"
  • 00:22:52.270 --> 00:22:55.220
  • And the Lord Jesus Christ steps forward
  • 00:22:55.230 --> 00:22:58.190
  • and signs his name to our ledger.
  • 00:22:58.200 --> 00:23:02.270
  • Only Jesus can pay, and that's why he came
  • 00:23:02.280 --> 00:23:07.190
  • to this earth at Christmastime, to begin the process
  • 00:23:07.200 --> 00:23:11.290
  • of signing his name at the bottom of your ledger,
  • 00:23:12.000 --> 00:23:15.030
  • to forgive all your sin so that you can be free
  • 00:23:15.040 --> 00:23:18.210
  • from that sin and forgiven and go to heaven
  • 00:23:18.220 --> 00:23:22.000
  • to spend eternity with God.
  • 00:23:22.010 --> 00:23:25.190
  • So, let me ask you this question,
  • 00:23:25.200 --> 00:23:28.080
  • have you submitted to him?
  • 00:23:28.090 --> 00:23:31.260
  • Have you asked him to come and live within your life
  • 00:23:31.270 --> 00:23:36.050
  • and be your Savior?
  • 00:23:36.060 --> 00:23:38.080
  • It is the greatest decision you will ever make.
  • 00:23:38.090 --> 00:23:42.000
  • It will change your life from this moment on.
  • 00:23:42.010 --> 00:23:44.090
  • You will never be the same.
  • 00:23:44.100 --> 00:23:46.150
  • And it is the most incredible way to celebrate Christmas,
  • 00:23:46.160 --> 00:23:51.230
  • to accept the gift of Jesus Christ, which God gave.
  • 00:23:51.240 --> 00:23:55.060
  • That gift was given at Christmas.
  • 00:23:55.070 --> 00:23:58.030
  • Why don't you receive that gift?
  • 00:23:58.040 --> 00:24:00.210
  • announcer: Dr. Jeremiah will return
  • 00:24:02.060 --> 00:24:03.200
  • to close today's program right after this.
  • 00:24:03.210 --> 00:24:05.260
  • announcer: Thank you for watching today.
  • 00:24:09.090 --> 00:24:10.270
  • When you support this program with a gift of any amount,
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  • Dr. Jeremiah would like to thank you by sending you,
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  • "Daily in His Presence," his new 365-day devotional for 2020.
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  • Each day's short reading in this beautiful
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  • leather-bound devotional provides Scripture
  • 00:24:25.050 --> 00:24:27.130
  • and a spiritual thought to encourage you,
  • 00:24:27.140 --> 00:24:29.290
  • challenge you, and focus your attention on God
  • 00:24:30.000 --> 00:24:32.150
  • so you can experience God's will in your life
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  • and enter into the company of the Savior.
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  • This devotional is also perfect for sharing with others.
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  • your loved ones a copy and help them walk ever closer
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  • into the new year.
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  • Contact Turning Point today.
  • 00:25:03.270 --> 00:25:05.270
  • announcer: And now, with one last word
  • 00:25:08.170 --> 00:25:10.060
  • for today's program, here is Dr. Jeremiah.
  • 00:25:10.070 --> 00:25:13.070
  • Dr. Jeremiah: Our response to any gift reflects
  • 00:25:13.240 --> 00:25:15.230
  • how we view the gift and the giver.
  • 00:25:15.240 --> 00:25:19.070
  • Can you identify with the four responses
  • 00:25:19.080 --> 00:25:21.180
  • we found in the original Christmas story,
  • 00:25:21.190 --> 00:25:24.280
  • the responses of sacrifice, and service,
  • 00:25:24.290 --> 00:25:28.170
  • and silence, and submission?
  • 00:25:28.180 --> 00:25:32.100
  • The more we know about, and appreciate,
  • 00:25:32.110 --> 00:25:34.170
  • the nature of God's gift, the deeper and more mature
  • 00:25:34.180 --> 00:25:37.190
  • our response to Christmas will be.
  • 00:25:37.200 --> 00:25:40.160
  • To help you deepen your own appreciation
  • 00:25:40.170 --> 00:25:43.090
  • for God's Christmas gift to us, please allow me to send you
  • 00:25:43.100 --> 00:25:46.280
  • two free gifts from "Turning Point."
  • 00:25:46.290 --> 00:25:49.040
  • One is our booklet called, "Your Greatest Turning Point,"
  • 00:25:49.250 --> 00:25:52.230
  • and the other is our monthly devotional magazine called,
  • 00:25:52.240 --> 00:25:55.220
  • "Turning Points."
  • 00:25:55.230 --> 00:25:57.210
  • Both of these gifts will lead you
  • 00:25:57.220 --> 00:25:59.140
  • into a deeper understanding of the gift of Jesus Christ
  • 00:25:59.150 --> 00:26:02.210
  • to the world,
  • 00:26:02.220 --> 00:26:04.050
  • and we will gladly send both of these gifts to you
  • 00:26:04.060 --> 00:26:06.280
  • free of charge if you will contact us here
  • 00:26:06.290 --> 00:26:09.230
  • at "Turning Point" today.
  • 00:26:09.240 --> 00:26:11.190
  • announcer: In addition to these free study resources,
  • 00:26:13.250 --> 00:26:16.040
  • nothing is as profound as the Word of God.
  • 00:26:16.050 --> 00:26:18.230
  • And now, Dr. Jeremiah has a Bible
  • 00:26:18.240 --> 00:26:21.060
  • for every member of the family.
  • 00:26:21.070 --> 00:26:23.030
  • There are numerous versions of the Jeremiah Study Bible,
  • 00:26:23.040 --> 00:26:25.210
  • perfect for adults and teens,
  • 00:26:25.220 --> 00:26:27.140
  • and the Airship Genesis Kids Study Bible
  • 00:26:27.150 --> 00:26:30.080
  • will bring the truth of God's Word
  • 00:26:30.090 --> 00:26:31.270
  • to the young ones in your life.
  • 00:26:31.280 --> 00:26:33.170
  • Contact "Turning Point" for more information or to order today.
  • 00:26:33.180 --> 00:26:37.180
  • announcer: Next time on, "Turning Point."
  • 00:26:43.240 --> 00:26:45.140
  • Join David Jeremiah for, "Make The Season Bright",
  • 00:26:47.030 --> 00:26:49.250
  • Christmas on Broadway at the historic Beacon Theater
  • 00:26:49.260 --> 00:26:52.230
  • in New York City.
  • 00:26:52.240 --> 00:26:54.040
  • male announcer: Thousands of Christians
  • 00:27:01.110 --> 00:27:02.200
  • take cruises for their vacations,
  • 00:27:02.210 --> 00:27:04.090
  • so why not take a cruise with, "Turning Point"?
  • 00:27:04.100 --> 00:27:06.270
  • Enjoy a Bible conference on the water.
  • 00:27:06.280 --> 00:27:08.260
  • When you set sail with David and Donna Jeremiah,
  • 00:27:08.270 --> 00:27:10.230
  • to Alaska.
  • 00:27:10.240 --> 00:27:12.030
  • You'll experience exciting ports and activities
  • 00:27:12.040 --> 00:27:14.090
  • and uplifting daily times of worship,
  • 00:27:14.100 --> 00:27:16.200
  • Bible teaching, and fellowship.
  • 00:27:16.210 --> 00:27:18.260
  • More than just a getaway.
  • 00:27:18.270 --> 00:27:20.120
  • It's a time to refresh, renew,
  • 00:27:20.130 --> 00:27:22.080
  • and reconnect with God and loved ones.
  • 00:27:22.090 --> 00:27:23.240
  • Call or go online for more details.
  • 00:27:24.150 --> 00:27:26.200