Christmas Eve Lessons & Carols
Delivered By
Pr. Lovett
Delivered On
December 24, 2011
Central Passage
Luke 2:1-7
+ Luke 2:1-7 +
In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Perhaps the most oft-said inquire of Christmas lore is this: what’s the true meaning of Christmas?  And surely there are dozens if not hundreds of movies and plays and TV dramas that end with a climactic emphatic word, having solved the vexing problem, or rescued the ruined day, or otherwise succeeded in showing love and generosity: now that’s the meaning of Christmas.
The world needs to find and have a meaning for Christmas. After all, Christmas isn’t going away. And since the virgin-birth and God becoming man are too great for the world to swallow, warm feelings toward others, gift-giving, and even magical nights of elves must try – futile as it is – to fill the void.
But the true meaning of this Great Festival wherein shepherds watch and angels sing and the Virgin gives birth is not simply love or mercy or well-wishing; and certainly not eggnog, missal toe and roasting chestnuts.  No.  The true meaning is this: God became man.
The celebration of Christmas is the celebration of the Incarnation of the Lord God Almighty; an event promised even in Eden when God promised a Savior that would crush the head of the serpent even as the serpent would bruise His heal.  The incarnation – God in the flesh - is the true meaning of Christmas.  And this, for us.  For unto you is born a child, unto you a Savior is given.
And this is as if our great enemy that could fell us with but a word turned from his pursuit to slay us and became one of us to save us.  Your God, O man, is the virgin-born.
Born that man no more may die.  Into the midst of ignoble men is one born of true nobility.  Into the midst of sinners comes the Holy One of God.  Into the midst of darkness, doubt, confusion and yes, even death, is born the Light that illumines all men and brings eternal life.  Come to set the sons of earth free from sin and death; come to be the way of righteousness.
Hear, O man, O sinners far and near, with fresh ears, hear again the true meaning of Christmas – God became man.  What joy! What mercy! For now when your conscience is afflicted, when your soul is beaten down, when your sins have the better of you, when temptation has become your bedfellow, and the fires of hell lick your feet and the devil’s hot breath is on your neck, know that the Son of Mary – one like you – has come and conquered all and gives you the spoils of His victory.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel has come to you and brought you peace with God.
In Nomine Iesu
+ Amen +