|Pastor Keith Bell|
Sunday night I preached at the TEXAS BAPTIST CHURCH my sermon "THE FIRST CHRISTMAS." A mother and daughter who were led to Christ were baptized tonight. The building once again was full and the spirit was great. Pastor Keith Bell is doing an excellent work in San Antonio, TX. If you are ever in this area on vacation please stop by and visit this great church. The church was started 11 years ago with Pastor Bell and family.
THE FIRST CHRISTMAS
I came to the defense last night of those folks at the inn. I think we have given them a bum rap. I think we have painted them up to be some kind of a wicked, vulgar, drunken, sensuous, adulterers, and party goers who did not want Jesus. I do not think that is true. These folks were not mad at Jesus for they were not Atheists who did not believe in God, or hate God, or hate Jesus. If they had had a room they would have rented it.
Some there that night were stout Jewish farmers with their money bags who were there to simply pay their taxes. Some were governors with the pride of small official business in their hearts. Some were no doubt Roman soldiers performing their civic duties. There were probably a few traveling Priests and Rabbis laying down dogmatic oracles to wide mouthed hearers. There were a few idlers I see hanging around the fire warming themselves. The city was packed with visitors for this was a tax day, a holiday, and a religious day.
This is not the angry mob of 33 1/2 years later. This is not the crowd hollering "Crucify him...crucify him" or "Let Barabbas go...let Barabbas go!" These people were not screaming "Don't let that baby in!" They simply did not know who he was for had they known they would have let him in.
They looked for the Messiah. They wanted him to come. Their fathers, grandfathers, and forefathers had looked for the Messiah. They knew Genesis 3:15 promised that the seed of a virgin would someday bruise the head of the Serpent. These are not atheistic God haters for they mostly were good, dedicated, religious, God fearing people who just did not know he was.
They had offered the Passover for they knew someday there would come the God-man as the real Passover, but they did not know that this little one at the door was him.
These are they who had seen the High-priest perform his ritual and they knew that some day the real High-priest would come, but they were so busy they missed the Messiah at their very doorstep. These are they who knew the story of the Brazen Serpent in Numbers. They knew that Brazen Serpent pictured the fact that someday a Saviour would die on the cross about whom the Scriptures said, "If I be lifted up I will draw all men unto me." They knew Isaiah chapter 53 for they could quote it. They knew Isaiah chapter 9 for they had it memorized. "Unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace."
Please let us not be too hard on these folks for they are just like us "TOO BUSY" celebrating with each other to notice who is at the very door of our lives and whose birthday it really is! GOTTA LOVE THE SAVIOUR WHOSE BIRTHDAY IT IS!