At my home church, I preach on the third Sunday night of every month, and every other Wednesday. And since my pastor isn’t really the sermon series kinda guy (which is perfectly fine for his style of preaching), I’ve decided that I’m going to use my preaching dates as opportunity to try my first shot at preaching an advent series.
In case you couldn’t already tell my inspiration for the title “So, This is Christmas” comes from the opening lines of John Lennon’s 1971 Christmas hit, “Happy Xmas (War is Over).”
When this song came out it was an anthem for peace in the UK and eventually the song got more popular over the years, and The Fray has even recorded a cover of it (which is fantastic by the way, check it out here).
What I really want to do in this series is give us a reminder that Jesus really is the reason for the season. In reality, that should be the goal of every advent series. As a matter of fact, the goal of your preaching (regardless of where you are in the Church calendar) should be to exalt Christ and present the Gospel. I think so often we’re trying to come up with original ideas for our preaching. “Maybe I can present this new idea or that new idea.” “Maybe, I can try a different approach.” While creativity in a sermon series isn’t a bad thing, it can become a bad thing when we make the focus all about how ‘original’ we are instead of how good God is. In reality there’s nothing new under the sun, and if we think it’s new then it’s probably just an old heresy revisited.
But, in case you’re interested, here’s the basic outline that I’m thinking of working with:
Sermon 1: The ‘Who’ of Christmas
Text: John 1:1-5
Sometimes we just need to return to the basics. In the hustle and bustle of the busy Christmas we try to find the right gifts for our friends and family we must remember that God has given us the ultimate gift of His son, Jesus Christ.
Sermon 2: The ‘What’ of Christmas
Text: Hebrews 2:10-18
In this message we’ll look specifically at what Jesus came to do. In this message, we’ll cover the Incarnation, a brief overview of the life of Christ, and his death and resurrection.
Sermon 3: The ‘Why’ of Christmas
Text: 1 John 3:8
Carl F.H. Henry said, “The early church didn’t say, ‘Look what the world has become!’ They said, ‘Look what has come into the world!” 1 John 3:8 clearly says that Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil. That’s the ‘why’ of Christmas. So, what does that look like for us? What are the works of the devil and what does it look like for them to be destroyed in our lives and in the world?
I realize that these are not the traditional texts that one may use for their Christmas readings, but I believe that this is the guideline that I’m supposed to use in this advent season. If you like it, feel free to use it.