The Birth of Christ
Outline: Lessons from 'The Living Christ' #1 - Pictures 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 19.
|Theme:||Incarnation; Birth of Christ|
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Friends, did you know that God came to earth many years ago? He did not come as a great spirit or as an angel from heaven. Instead He chose to be born into this world as a little baby. He was called Jesus. Look at the pictures in this lesson and I will tell you how it happened.
Picture 5. God's Promise to Abraham
In this picture you can see a man named Abraham. He lived many years before Jesus was born. At that time men and women had turned away from the God who created heaven and earth. Most people worshipped idols, but Abraham worshipped only the living God. He trusted God and obeyed Him. God spoke to Abraham and said, "I will bless you and make your descendants as many as the stars in the sky. You have obeyed Me, so you and your descendants will be a blessing to all nations on earth." A nation called Israel descended from the children of Abraham. The people of Israel never forgot God's promise to Abraham. For hundreds of years they waited for God to send the One who would bless all people.
Picture 7. The Angel Speaks to Mary
In this picture you can see an angel from God. He appeared to a young woman in Israel nearly two thousand years later. Her name was Mary. The angel said to Mary, "Don't be afraid! God is pleased with you. You will have a son. His name will be Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High God. He will rule the people of God forever, and His kingdom will have no end." Mary said, "How can this happen? I am not married." The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come down to you, and God's power will come over you. So your child will be called the holy Son of God." As a result, Mary became pregnant by the Holy Spirit of God.
Picture 8. The Angel and Joseph
Mary was promised in marriage to a man named Joseph. Joseph found out that Mary was pregnant. He was a good man so he decided not to marry her. You can see Joseph in this picture. One night an angel appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, "Do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife because the baby conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will have a son, and you must give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." The name 'Jesus' means 'Saviour'. When Joseph woke up he did what the angel had told him. He took Mary home to be his wife, but he did not sleep with her before her baby was born.
Picture 9. The Birth of Jesus
In those days the government called the people for a census. Everyone had to go to the town of his birth to be registered. Joseph and Mary were both descendants of King David, so Joseph took Mary and they went to the town of David, called Bethlehem. There was no place for them to stay so they had to sleep in an animal stable. While they were there Mary gave birth to a son. She wrapped Him in baby clothes and she laid him in the animals' feeding trough.
Picture 10. The Shepherds and the Angels
Near Bethlehem there were some shepherds. You can see them in this picture. They were living out in the fields in order to protect their sheep. Is was night. Suddenly an angel from God appeared to them. They were very frightened. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I have good news for you which will make everyone happy. This very day in the town of David, a Saviour was born for you. He is Christ the Lord. You will know who he is, because you will find him dressed in baby clothes and lying in an animal's feeding trough." Suddenly a great crowd of angels appeared. They were praising God and saying, "Praise God in heaven! Peace on earth to everyone who pleases God."
Picture 11. The Shepherds Visit Baby Jesus
When the angels had gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let us go to Bethlehem and see this thing which the Lord has told us about." So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph. The baby was lying in the feeding trough just as the angel had told them. The shepherds told many people what they had heard and seen. They were amazed and they gave praise to God.
Picture 12. Simeon Prophesies about Jesus
Joseph and Mary named their baby Jesus. After forty days they took Him to the temple in Jerusalem. They wanted to present Him to God and to offer sacrifices. This was the custom in Israel when a boy was born. The old man in the picture is Simeon. He was waiting for God's promise to Abraham to come true. The Holy Spirit of God told Simeon that he would not die until he saw Christ the Lord. Simeon went into the temple just as Mary and Joseph arrived. He took the baby in his arms and gave praise to God. He said, "Now I can die in peace because you have kept your promise to me." Just then, an old widow named Anna came in. She was 84 years old. She lived in the temple and worshipped God night and day. She also knew that the baby Jesus was the promised One, and she told many people about Him.
Picture 13. The Visit of the Wise Men
Soon after the birth of Jesus Christ another amazing thing happened . Some wise men came to Jerusalem from countries far away. They asked, "Where is the baby who has been born as king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and we have come to worship him." Herod was the king at that time. He was jealous when he heard that another king was born. He called all the chief priests and leaders and asked them where Christ was born. They read their holy books and they told Herod, "In Bethlehem, in the land of Judah." So the wise men went to Bethlehem and found Jesus. They gave Him gifts fit for a king, and they worshipped Him. When the wise men had gone, an angel appeared to Joseph. He told him, "Take the child and His mother and escape to Egypt. Herod will try to kill Him." So they went to Egypt and stayed there until King Herod died. Then they returned to Israel and lived in a town called Nazareth. Yes, Jesus had an amazing birth. But how does He bring blessing to all people in this world? Listen and I will tell you.
Picture 19. Jesus Teaches Nicodemus
Jesus grew up and began to do many amazing miracles. In this picture we can see Jesus. He is speaking with a man named Nicodemus. Nicodemus was a religious teacher in Israel. He went to Jesus one night and said, "We know that you are a teacher who has come from God. No one can perform the miracles you are doing if God is not with him." Jesus answered and said, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again." Nicodemus said, "How can a man be born when he is old?" Jesus told Nicodemus that his spirit must be born again. All people have sinned against God. We are separated from God because of sin. Our spirits are dead towards God. We must be born again. We must have new life from God. This is the reason that Jesus Christ was born into this world - so that we may be born again and have everlasting life. We are born again when we believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God. God loved the world so much that He gave His only Son, so that all who believe in Him will not perish, but will have everlasting life. Jesus is the Saviour whom God promised to Abraham. He is the One who brings blessing to all people. You too can believe in Jesus Christ. He can give you new life so that you will live with God forever.