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<< Our Journey Online with Dr. James MacDonald

Our Journey Online - December 19, 2011

  • 2011 Dec 19
  • COMMENTS

The Greatest Christmas Verse

6For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. —Isaiah 9:6-7

As I was thinking about the Christmas season recently, I decided to do a little survey with people: “What do you think is the greatest Christmas verse in the Bible?” I’ve had a few suggestions. Some people said, “You know, I really like Isaiah 7:14b, ‘Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.’”A great verse, but not the greatest Christmas verse in the Bible. 

Other people think it should be Matthew 1:21,“She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” Also great, but not the greatest Christmas verse in the Bible. Some insist, “Well, then it’s got to be that other angelic announcement, Luke 2:14, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” Incorrect. I love that verse, but it’s not the greatest Christmas verse in the Bible.

Are you ready for it? Here it is: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6). Seven hundred years before Christ was born, Isaiah delivered this great and good news! The other verses I mentioned are great in their own way, but Isaiah 9:6 is the widest, deepest, longest, and therefore greatest Christmas verse in God’s Word. Every word is worth thinking about!

For example, that first little word “for” points back to the reason for the announcement: “The people who walked in darkness. . . “ (Isaiah 9:2a). That’s us, mankind in trouble. Isaiah 9:6 is pure prophetic language—talking about an event before it happens as if it has happened: “. . . a child is born . . . a Son is given.” I mean, imagine the joy offered to heaven and earth when the greatest birth announcement ever was made; that God was sending His Son, Jesus Christ, into the world to save us from the darkness of sin to which we were otherwise doomed. God declared it as a done deal!

Journal

·         How am I planning to enjoy and celebrate the good news of the Gospel this year at Christmas?

·         Based on my experience, what are the differences between an accidental and intentional Christmas season?

Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You that Your announcements are never tentative or uncertain. You know, and therefore, You can declare. Thank You for filling Your Word with the truth upon which we can rest our lives and our eternal destiny. And thank You for Christmas, when we can once again marvel at how You worked it all out! I pray this in the name of Jesus, our Christmas child. Amen.

Always True&#58; 5 Great and Precious Promises of God
Always True: 5 Great and Precious Promises of God 

5 CD Series Set - $35.00

What if you believed—truly believed with all confidence that God is with you? How would today go for you if you knew without a doubt that God is in control? What would be different in your life if you were sure God is watching and good? What would you risk if you were certain God is victorious? 

Just how would believing God’s promises change your life?  

Ask the greatest Christian you’ll ever meet if they hold on to God’s promises and they’ll all say yes. Believing that God will do what He promises leads to a great life. The greatest Christian you’ll every meet knows, treasures, and is resting in the promises of God. They cling to these assurances that God gives His people so they can walk by faith while they wait for Him to work.

So what exactly does God promise?  In this topical study of what will always be true, Pastor James MacDonald will explore five great and precious promises that God keeps. Enter into this study with anticipation and faith that the God who makes these promises is faithful and true... always true.
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