(Archive of other audio sermons)
(Archive of other audio
"Make haste to the manger"
Summary of sermon by Erlo
Stegen, 25 Dec 2015
it happened in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world
should be taxed.
2 This taxing was first made when
Cyrenius was governor of Syria.
3 And all went to be registered,
each to his own city.
4 And Joseph also went up from
Galilee to be taxed (out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David which
is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family line of David).
5 And he took Mary his betrothed
wife, being with child.
6 And while they were there, the
days for her deliverance were fulfilled.
7 And she brought forth her son,
the First-born, and wrapped Him, and laid Him in a manger-- because there was no room for
them in the inn.
8 And in the same country there
were shepherds living in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9 And lo, the angel of the Lord
came on them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them. And they were grievously
10 And the angel said to them, Do
not fear. For behold, I give to you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all
11 For to you is born today, in
the city of David, a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
12 And this is a sign to you. You
will find the babe wrapped, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the
angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace, good will toward men.
15 And it happened as the angels
departed from them into Heaven, the shepherds said to one another, Indeed, let us go to
Bethlehem and see this thing which has happened, which the Lord made known to us.
16 And hurrying they came and
sought out both Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in the manger.
17 And seeing, they publicly told
about the word spoken to them concerning this Child.
18 And all those who heard
marvelled about the things spoken to them by the shepherds.
The birth of Jesus is the beginning of the Good News published
throughout the world. In Rome Caesar Augustus ruled the whole known world. He was a raw
heathen. He knew nothing about the Messiah. He knew nothing of the prophecies about the
birth of Christ. But God ruled that he should have the census so the Saviour could be born
in Bethlehem. Mary and Joseph were in Nazareth. But because of the census they had to go
to Bethlehem. Do you see God's might? Nothing is impossible with God. Other people could
have complained at the injustice that Mary had to travel all the way to Bethlehem at her
late stage of her pregnancy. But Mary and Joseph did not fight against it but bowed to the
law. And through that Gods will was done and the prophecies were fulfilled, even as
Micah prophesied that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2).
When they got to Bethlehem no room was found for them to stay, and
they had to go down into the cow-shed. The world did not accept Him. There was also no
midwife, no doctor to help her. But God was with her and the Child was born. She didn't
even have a mattress for the baby. So Jesus was born and placed in the straw manger of the
cows. This was the greatest event in history and yet He was born in this manger.
There were also shepherds abiding in the field keeping watch over
their flock by night. Then a very important angel appeared to them to tell them of what
had taken place. And with this angel were a multitude of angels rejoicing and sharing the
matter. It does not say that this host of heaven sang the news but spoke it. Imagine what
it must have sounded like! And they brought the wonderful news that Jesus the Messiah was
born in Bethlehem. This was the most powerful sermon ever preached, that Jesus was born in
Bethlehem, lying in a manger, wrapped in swaddling clothes.
The shepherds were not like the scribes and Pharisees in Jerusalem
who knew exactly where the Messiah would be born, but not one of them went there; it
didnt reach their hearts. Not one of them were moved to go and see for themselves.
They were simply like road signs that point in the right direction but do not go
themselves. The knowledge of the truth is not enough. You must be in the truth.
If you want to meet with Jesus Christ, you must be in that place
which He has appointed.
There are so many promises in the Bible, but unless you fulfil the
conditions none of those promises will be fulfilled. You might pray for your country or
family, but nothing will happen unless you fulfil God's conditions, parting from sin.
Every promise in the Bible has a condition, and unless you fulfil the condition the
promise won't be fulfilled.
When the shepherds saw the Child as the angels had told them, they
worshipped Him and believed and proclaimed the message. It was their day of salvation.
Have you seen the Messiah, the King of kings? If you bow at His
feet, admitting you're a sinner, you will be saved, but if not your haughtiness will send
you to hell.