“The Half-Unwrapped Gift”

Mt.2:1-12; Titus 2:11-14, 3:4-7  Christmas Eve Dec. 24, 2005  Play video

Gifts that Give One Pause

•     some gifts not enthusiastically received
•     driver with bad tires needs more than tow
•     Jesus’ birth challenges us to accept long-term help

Evil that’s Herod-itary

•     Herod political leader who would Grab, Smash ‘n’ Take
•     disturbed at report of legitimate king of Jews born (Mt 2:3)
•     finds out info secretly, lies, arranges massacre to protect power (2:7f, 16)
•     need to say ‘no’ to our Herod-like ungodliness, passions, malice (Titus 3:3)

The Gracious, Giving King

•     Jesus our “great God AND Saviour”: mercy not massacre
•     sanctifies (makes pure, holy) as well as justifies (acquitted before Judge)
•     unwrapping Gift requires humble worship, willingness to change behaviour

Empty Manger / Jesus Inside

•     little girl wanting unaffordable baby Jesus figurine
•     realize more important to have Jesus in heart
•     grace in another paying the price for us

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