Gospel Dynamite with J. Allen Mashburn
Religion & Spirituality:Christianity
When Shepherds Meet | Luke 2:8-20 | Pastor J. Allen Mashburn
The Christmas season can be a dangerous time! No, I am not referring to shopping at Wal-Mart, although you are taking your life into your hands when you go there during this time of year. I am talking about the Christmas story. There is a danger that we can hear it so often that it become too familiar. There is a danger that we will lose the significance of the message because we are too familiar with it.
Every year we tell the same stories told in the same ways. We talk about shepherds, angels, wise men, Mary and Joseph and the baby Jesus. If we are not careful this annual handling of this precious truth might just cause us to take it for granted.
We know all the details and if we are not careful, our familiarity with the Christmas story can cause us to overlook just how amazing the story really is.
So today, I want to challenge you to see it again for the first time. Let’s begin with the announcement of the birth of Jesus Christ. To whom does God announce the birth of His Son? To whom would you expect the announcement to go?
We could see how God might choose to announce the birth of Christ to Herod the king. We could see how he would want to announce the birth in a splendid ceremony in the Temple led by the High Priest. But we have trouble understanding why he would choose a ragtag band of shepherds.
The announcement of the birth of the Son of God is not made to a king in a palace. It is not made to a priest in as temple. It is not made to the wealthy, to the movers and the shakers, or to the most important people in the land. The announcement of the birth of the Messiah; of the One Who would grow up to die on a cross for the sins of the lost, was made to a group of shepherds.
At best the shepherds were common, ordinary men. They were not the social elite. At worst, they were vile, dirty men, who were, for the most part, social and religious outcasts.
Most likely these shepherds were tending their sheep just outside of Bethlehem. By all accounts, they were tending sheep being that were being raised for use in the sacrifices down at the Temple in Jerusalem. They were the last group of people that you would expect God to make this kind of an announcement to. They were the very group of men that was chosen to hear the glorious news of the Savior’s birth.
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