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The Essential Holiday

East

The Good News

Week 3 • December 17, 2017 • Glen Elliott

Christmas and our faith are based on a genealogy. The Good News is about something that actually happened. It is not a myth or tale. Jesus is not a metaphor but he is real, grounded in history; he had a history. The story is good news and news reports what happened. Jesus really came to earth as a baby. He really did suffer and die for you and me. He really did rise from the grave. It is because of this news of historical reality that we chose to believe and follow all the rest in the Bible. So Matthew starts the story that Jesus was born on Christmas, part of a long genealogy where there is no escapism and full of a reality with all the warts of the human condition. The Gospel is the best story of all because it happened.

The Light

Week 2 • December 10, 2017 • Roger Blumenthal

We live in a very dark world. Folks are “in the dark” when it comes to knowing the truth and having a cure for the evil of our world and in our lives. We cannot save ourselves! But Christmas reminds us of a dawning of light on our dark world and dark hearts. That light is Jesus, a child born who is mighty eternal God, an amazing counselor and the prince who can bring us peace with God. If he’s all that, then he can’t be ignored or tamed. We need the spiritual light that came that first Christmas.

A King

Week 1 • December 3, 2017 • Glen Elliott

This idea of a king is central to the Christmas story. The wise men asked Herod, the king of that day, where THE King was born. Herod would not allow his power to be challenged. And even now, we fight over who will be the king of our lives. We all want to be king of our own kingdom and we struggle to give up our throne to anyone else. Only one king can sit on a throne, the throne of your life. Many seek a god and king they want him to be. We create a god of our liking who we can be king over. We resist Jesus being the only king of our life. If Jesus, the Son of God, the true King was born on Christmas, we can’t be passive. He either is the Lord and King or he is not.