NO CHRISTMAS IN BETHLEHEM
Matthew 2: 16-18
Perhaps you heard the news story a few weeks ago that
Christmas has been canceled in Bethlehem. Every year in
Bethlehem at Christmas time, thousands of Christians converged
on the little village of Bethlehem to celebrate at the place of
His birth the coming of the Lord Jesus into the world. But
because of the violence and the danger to tourists at this
particular time, as the news story went, there would be no
Christmas in Bethlehem. Later reports seem to indicate to us
that the first reports were a little bit overstated. There
will still be a celebration of the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem,
but there will not be a reception given in Manger Square by the
mayor of Bethlehem. Well, whether they have Bethlehem
Christmas this year or not, it is for sure that when the Lord
Jesus came into the world, in a very real sense, there was no
Christmas in Bethlehem. The birth of Jesus Christ brought to
Bethlehem a godless leader, murdered babies, weeping mothers
and the message of Christmas.
The verses we are going to study this morning point us to
several aspects of the coming of the Lord Jesus into the world.
So let's look at these verses together and let's see why when
Jesus was born there was no celebration in Bethlehem.
First of all I want to say that this passage points us to
the world's madness. We catch that in verse 16 when it says:
"Then Herod". We have already been introduced to this man,
Herod. We know that he is the King of the Jews by his own
designation. He was not God's King of the Jews. We have
studied the record of this madman. The world will be better
off when Herod is gone. Verse nineteen of this chapter cannot
come too soon. The world will do much better when the
announcement is made that Herod is dead. There are some people
who are so devastating and filled wj-ith violence and vininLnesn
that when they pass off the scene, the world is better off.
There was a man in the Old Testam ...
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