To Be a Kid Again: Christmas LIVE! Pastor David Rathel. 12.10.17

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MATTHEW CHAPTER 2 The Visit of the Wise Men 7 Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” 9 After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way. The Flight to Egypt 13 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 14 And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt 15 and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.” Herod Kills the Children 16 Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, became furious, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had ascertained from the wise men. 17 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah: 18 “A voice was heard in Ramah, weeping and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be comforted, because they are no more.” The Return to Nazareth 19 But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, 20 saying, “Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child's life are dead.” In Jewish society, in the time of Jesus, children had no rights. Children, women and slaves were lumped together as inferior members of society. Women were sort of possessions to their Husbands, Children to their parents, and slaves to their masters. When children were not given any importance or respect, Jesus showed such great respect, love, and concern for them. No founder of religion or any great man in those days, treated children as fondly as Jesus did. JESUS WAS A CHILD-LIKE PERSON: GENUINE: He cried, he got angry, he felt hungry, he enjoyed the company of friends, he loved Nature. TRANSPARENT: He never deceived anyone; all knew where they stood with Jesus, no falsehood, pretence, hypocrisy. FRIENDLY: With his disciples, John, Mary Magdalene, Martha, Lazarus, sinners, the poor, the outcast, the downtrodden. ALIVE: To people and situations - At Cana: No wine; At Naim: The widow’s affliction; In the Temple: The poor woman’s mite. INTUITIVE: His quick and witty replies to the Pharisees and his opponents (Taxes to Caesar, adulterous woman, etc). PERSPECTIVE: Of Nature (flowers, rains, etc.), people, events of life, persons’ characters. FULL OF FEELING: Compassion for the crowds (multiply bread & fish), affection towards children and those who suffer. FORGIVING: Forgiving sinners, Peter, Matthew, the Good Thief, the Adulterous Woman, his executioners. REVERSE ENGINEERING OUR CHILDLIKENESS: To Be Christ-Like, Is To Be Child-Like. If We Are Child-Like, Spontaneously We Will Love Children. To The Extent We Do Not Love Children; We Have Already Lost Our Childlikeness. To Love Children, Means That We Are Attracted To Their Christ-Like Qualities. Simply Put, Loving Christ Means Loving Children And Becoming Childlike.

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