LET US ADORE HIM (Part 6) LET US ADORE HIM (Part 6) John 1: 11-14 Pastor Carey Christmas Eve (7:00) 2017

Who is the most famous person you’ve ever met?  Over the years I have been amazed at people, friends, parishioners who have met and talked with some of the biggest names on the planet.  Some shared good stories, some not so good.  Usually the not-so-good stories describe rudeness or a superiority complex in the celebrity.  But for those who had a good experience, somewhere in the telling of the encounter is a similar sentence, “they were so personable that they seemed to be real, just one of us!”

Rather than using the more traditional birth narrative accounts from Matthew and Luke’s Gospels, this year we have been looking at the story of the birth of Christ through the lens of John’s Gospel.  Our title, LET US ADORE HIM comes from the refrain of one of the most endeared of all Christmas Carols, O Come, All Ye Faithful. Daily adoration is our response as disciples of Jesus to the coming Christ child, the savior who was born to be crucified, dead and buried for our sins and the risen Lord of all.  So this Christmas season, we join together and adore Jesus for all he has, does and will forever do for us, in us and through us!

Jesus is the eternal word; the creator of all things; our light in the darkness; the one who knows our pain; the one who brings grace and truth.  Tonight we remember that the Christmas child is the one who is one of us!

There’s one word that describes the night Jesus came – ordinary. It was an ordinary night with ordinary sheep and ordinary shepherds. And were it not for a God who loves to add an “extra” on the front of the ordinary, the night would have gone unnoticed. But God does his best work amidst the common and that night He unveiled a masterpiece! And the night was ordinary no more!

The announcement went first to the shepherds. They didn’t ask God if He was sure He knew what He was doing. Theologians would have consulted their commentaries. The elite would have looked to see if anyone was watching. The successful would have first looked to their calendars. But the angels went to the shepherds – men who didn’t know enough to tell God that the messiah usually isn’t found sleeping in a feed trough. God comes to the common, regular folks because God’s most powerful tools are the simplest!  Jesus came as one of us and his coming allows us to be part of him as the Body of Christ and citizens of the Kingdom of God. In Jesus we see God living life as God would have lived it if God had been a human.

John 1:14 says, “The Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness.” He lived among us. He donned the costliest of robes, a human body. He became a friend of the sinner and a brother of the poor. He touched their sores and felt their tears and paid for their mistakes. And to all of us frightened ones, He shared the same message, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me…I will come again and receive you to Myself” (John 14:1).

Long ago, there ruled in Persia a wise and good king. He loved his people and wanted to know how they lived, hardships and struggles. So he began to wear the clothes of a working man or a beggar, and visit the homes of the poor. No one whom he visited discovered that he was their ruler. Once he visited a very poor man who lived in a cellar. He ate the coarse food the poor man ate. He spoke cheerful, kind words to him. Then he left. Later he returned and disclosed his true identity by saying, “I am your king!” The king thought the man would surely ask for some gift or favor, but he didn’t. Instead he said, “You left your palace and your glory to visit me in this dark, dreary place. You ate the course food I ate. You brought gladness to my heart! To others you have given your rich gifts. To me you have given yourself!”

The Christmas story reminds us that God was willing to make any accommodation to have fellowship with us, even becoming human!

And how do we respond? Some pretend He doesn’t exist. Others hear Him, but don’t believe Him. But then, a few decide to give it a try. And when they do, they discover Jesus – the God with skin on who came as one of us and his coming allows us to be part of him as the Body of Christ and citizens of the Kingdom of God.

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