The coming of the Messiah had been prophesied for centuries, but most were not anticipating when, where, or how He would appear. The good news of Christmas is literally for all people of all colors, countries, and ethnicities; male or female, old or young, rich or poor. The good tidings are for all children and common people.
Good Tidings for Children
Luke 2:6-7 “So it was, that while they were there the days were completed for her to be delivered; and she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn.”
The central character of Christmas is a child. That’s a big reason why children love Christmas because the focus is on the birth of a baby. Children love babies, and babies grow up to be children who love Christmas!
Prophecy of the Birth of Jesus
Isaiah prophesied of this wonderful event about 700 hundred years before it happened
Isaiah 9:6 “For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
This was no ordinary child, of course. He was God in the flesh. He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and thus, had no sin nature. The angel told Mary… “that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God” (Lk.1:35). This is wonderful news because we are sinners and cannot save ourselves. In fact, “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:23). The angel told Joseph, “You will call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins”, (Mt. 1:21).
Even children can understand the gospel message. Surveys tell that most Christians accepted Christ as Savior sometime during their childhood, with the largest percentage being between the ages of 6 to 19. You may remember in one instance recorded in the gospels, parents were bringing their children to Jesus, so they could see the Master and be blessed by Him. This irritated the disciples as they saw them as a nuisance that was preventing Jesus from more “important” ministry. Jesus rebuked the disciples and said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them, for of such is the kingdom of God”, (Lk. 18:16). I think Jesus is saying that the majority of those who believe and are born again into the family of God, do so sometime during their childhood. This is good news for children!
Jesus’ Birth Announced
Luke 2:8-1 6 “Now there were in the same country, shepherds, living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.
Then the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid, for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David, a Savior who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you; You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace, goodwill toward men.’
So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us’. And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger.”
Good Tidings for Common People
In first-century Israel, being a shepherd was among the lowest of jobs. Families often gave this task to one of the younger children (remember David, the shepherd boy?) or to an entry-level servant. But the angel of the Lord said this is “good tidings of great joy which will be to all people,” even to the most common and ordinary people, even to the lowly shepherds!
Amazingly, in God’s providence, He sent the angels first to the shepherds, which signaled the fact that this was indeed good tidings of great joy to all people. So the heavenly announcement began with the common people, starting with the “bottom rung” of society.
The Bible repeatedly says that God is no respecter of persons. Jesus was regularly seen eating with publicans and sinners, reaching out to the poor, prostitutes, lepers, and outcasts of society. And so in the grand scheme of things, it makes perfect sense that the lowly shepherds would be the first to hear about the birth of Christ, and they would be the first visitors to the manger to see the long-awaited Messiah, the Hope of Israel, the Desire of All Nations, the Savior of the World!
Good Tidings for Us
What does this mean for you and me today? This means there is hope for all of us, no matter our nationality, level of income, or societal status. Every single one of us can respond to this good news by repenting of our sin and placing our faith in Jesus Christ to be our personal Savior and Lord. Then we can pass these good tidings on to our family, neighbors, relatives, friends, and coworkers. (For a clear gospel message and prayer for forgiveness, visit our Salvation Page.)
The wonderful story of Christmas is for all people. This good news is too great to ignore and too essential to keep to ourselves. Angels shouted it from the heavens. We must shout it from the rooftops, broadcast it over the radio, television, and the internet. We must read it, write it, sing it, and share it any way we can. “For behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people!!!”
A familiar Christmas carol puts it this way…
Hark’, the herald angels sing, Glory to the newborn King.
Peace on earth and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled
Joyful all ye nations rise, join the triumph of the skies,
With the angelic hosts proclaim, Christ is born in Bethlehem;
Hark’, the herald angels sing, Glory to the newborn King
Hail the heav’n-born Prince of Peace! Hail the Sun of Righteousness;
Light and life to all He brings, Ris’n with healing in His wings.
Mild He lays His glory by, Born that man no more may die;
Born to raise the sons of earth, Born to give them second birth;
Hark, the herald angels sing, Glory to the newborn King!
(author Charles Wesley, 1739; adapted by George Whitefield and others)
Read all in this series:
The Season of Advent (the 4 weeks before Christmas)
Will You Find Rest This Advent Season?
HOPE Advent Candle 1 – Prophecy Gives Hope (video)
LOVE Advent Candle 2 – Promise Reveals Love (video)
JOY Advent Candle 3 – Jesus Is Our Joy (video)
PEACE Advent Candle 4 – Pause to Find Peace (video)
Christmas Day: When Love Was Born — Light the CHRIST Candle
What is the Prophetic Symbolism of Advent Candles?
Christmas-themed GOT QUESTIONS?
- Misconceptions about the Journey to Bethlehem (video)
- Errors in the Nativity Story? Is Jesus’ birthplace wrong?
- Who were the Three Wise Men? Fact or legend?
- How Did the Wise Men Know to Follow His Star?
- Did The Wise Men Arrive 12 Days After Jesus’ Birth? Or Was It Much Later?
- What is the significance of the Three Kings' gifts?
- Was Jesus born in a stable, a cave, or a house?
- Was Jesus born in September (not December?)
- Should we celebrate Jesus’ birthday in September?
- Does “Xmas” Cross Jesus Out of Christmas?
- What is the Prophetic Symbolism of Advent Candles?
- The Most Important Lesson for YOU in the Nativity Story?
- Was Mary a Levite, making Jesus both King and Priest?
- Should Christians Celebrate Christmas?
- How did Jesus become a man?
- Do You Get These 7 Things Right or Wrong About the Nativity Story?
- Are You Stuck in the Middle This Christmas? (short video lessons from the popular comedy TV show "The Middle.")
- What are the Prophecies of Christmas? (video)
- Where are the genealogies of Jesus in Mark and John?
- Why Are There Two Different Genealogies for Jesus?
- Should I Say “Happy Holidays” Instead of “Merry Christmas?”
- A Boastful Christmas Letter
- Peace Delivers Hope
- Promise Ignites Hope
- Preparation Produces Hope
- Prophesy Reveals Hope
- Alone at Christmas? Feeling lonely?
- Another reason God came to dwell with man.
- How can you have a white Christmas without snow?
- Christmas, abortion, and Joseph, the forgotten man of Christmas
- Remember the Wonder of Christmas
- Will you find rest, peace, and joy this advent season?
- A Christmas Morning Prayer by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)
- I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, performed by Casting Crowns
- Mary’s Child — from the movie, A Christmas Wish
- The True Meaning of Christmas: The Sacrifice Began (How Many Kings)
- What If You Had Been There When Jesus Was Born? (video)
- Pause To Find Hope. Receive the Promises of God. See Jesus. Hear God’s Plan.
- Christmas Trivia Fun
- Songs of Christmas Series: Away in a Manger; Mary, Did You Know? Rose of Bethlehem; Good Christian Men Rejoice; Hark! The Herald Angels Sing; I Wonder As I Wander; What Child Is This? The First Noel In the Bleak Midwinter (a golden oldie)
Have You Heard About This Baby Boy? A most beautiful rendition of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah, with a Christmas message to touch your heart and give joy to your soul.
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