Friday, December 24, 2010

The Nativity - Part 5: Christmas Eve Service

Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | |


I would like to welcome you all to the 5th annual Christmas Eve Service here at the House of Faith Church.

Tonight, we will be paying homage to God the Father for the Messiah, and His promise of redeeming humankind.

 Though December 25th is not the actual day of Christ’s birth, it is the day many have chosen to celebrate His coming into our world, and His ultimate sacrifice to pay our debt to reconcile us to God and allow us who believe in Him to have eternal life.

Tonight is a special night for friends and family to gather, give reflection, praise and worship to our King.  Not baby Jesus, but Jesus Christ, the Messiah, the Lord of Lord’s and King of King’s, our savior.

So as we celebrate this evening, let the songs fill your soul with the love and joy of Jesus.

Tonight, as we celebrate His coming, give thanks to God for the love He has shown, and given us.

Let us celebrate Christmas in the Spirit of Jesus Christ, who came to us from the heart of God’s own being, in the form of a servant, born in human likeness.

Let us celebrate God’s entering into our lives, bringing the light to the entire world.

Tonight, may love be reborn in our hearts as we worship God together.



         1 John 4:9-10 {Slide 3}
This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

         Galatians 4:4-5 {Slide 4}
But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.

And the people cried out for the Messiah to come, the one that God promised, the one that the prophets spoke of.  They sang out, Emmanuel, which is two Hebrew words, El, meaning God, and Immanu, meaning with us.

O’ come, Emmanuel is a cry for God to come and be with us.

SONG: O’ Come, O’ Come Emmanuel {Slide 5}

The time had finally come for the Messiah to come into the world, to be with us, to show us love, to free us from the bondage of sin, and reconcile us to God.

         Luke 1:26-38 {Slide 9}
 26In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary. 28The angel went to her and said, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you."

 29Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30But the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. 31You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. 32He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end."

 34"How will this be," Mary asked the angel, "since I am a virgin?"

 35The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God...

... 38"I am the Lord's servant," Mary answered. "May it be to me as you have said." Then the angel left her.

         1 Peter 1:3-4 {Slide 10}
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you,”

Advent Candle - HOPE {Slide 11}

We first light the advent candle, which represents HOPE.  God fulfilled His promise of bringing the Messiah, and our HOPE is now in Christ, and His promise to return, which will also be fulfilled.
(Light the shortest purple candle for HOPE)

SONG: O’ Little Town of Bethlehem {Slide 12}

         Isaiah 9:6 {Slide 18}
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Advent Candle - PEACE {Slide 19}

We now light the advent candle, which represents PEACE.  Jesus is the Prince of PEACE, and He promises to leave His PEACE with us, a PEACE which does surpass worldly understanding.
(Light the purple candle for PEACE)

         Luke 2:8-12 {Slide 20}
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

Advent Candle - JOY {Slide 21}

We now light the advent candle, which represents JOY.  We rejoice because of the overwhelming joy Christ has brought to us.
(Light the pink candle for JOY)

         Luke 2:13-15 {Slide 22}
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” 15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

SONG: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing {Slide 23}

         Luke 2:16-18 {Slide 30}
 16 So the shepherds hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.

SONG: O’ Come All Ye Faithful{Slide 31}

         John 3:16 - 18 {Slide 40}
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.”

Advent Candle - LOVE {Slide 41}

We now light the advent candle, which represents LOVE.  As the scriptures say in 1 John 4:8-10 “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9 This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”
(Light the purple candle for LOVE)

SONG: The First Noel {Slide 42}

The last candle represents the light that Jesus Christ brought to the world when He came.

John 1:14 & 16,17 {Slide 49}
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

(Light the big candle for CHRIST) {Slide 50}

Jesus took the disciples in Matthew 28, and gave them the “Great commission”, which instructs that the light that Jesus brought, would be shared with the world through the Body of Christ, which is us, the believers and followers of Jesus Christ.

Matthew 5:14
“You are the light of the world...”

The Word of God tells us that we are this light.  Jesus Himself said to take this light, and share it with the world.

As we sing Silent Night, let us pass this light from one to another, and let it represent the lives we are living in the world. 

SONG: Silent night {Slide 51}

Let us close with our last song, and a closing prayer.

SONG: Joy to the World {Slide 58}

·        Thank you for this evening, and each one here

·        Bless each for coming

·        Pray that each one takes with them tonight, Hope, Peace, Joy and Love of God

·        Most of all, the Love of Christ

·        Pray that each one here tonight, takes this Light that Christ has given us, and shares it with the world as He commanded in His Word

AMEN {Slide 67}