Merry Christmas

The bible points to a particular star that leads the Magi (Wise Men), to the place where Jesus will be born. A new star represented the birth of a new king. The star was also seen at that time as a sign of a new and better time of hope.  Apparently in those days people often looked up to the stars for signs.  Did this Christmas star really exist?  Astronomers almost all agree: yes! Chinese astronomers also reported seeing a special star around that time. What exactly these people saw remains unclear. A supernova, the planets Venus and Jupiter aligned or comet Halley. We don’t know.  Yet, the bible is very clear that these kings from the East (possibly Iran ‘Persia’), were led by the star that guided them to have an encounter with Jesus.

The star led the kings from the east to meet Jesus, the bible then states that they journeyed on a different path (Matthew 2v12…’When it was time to leave, they returned to their own country by another route’)
Their journey took a different path following an encounter with Jesus.  The two things I’d like to mention from this is that even though the kings from the east had a star that led them to Jesus in Bethlehem.  What is your star?  Meaning, what will it take to lead you to Jesus?  Maybe you will receive a carol service invitation to your local church?  Here at Bethel we will be distributing postcards to homes across Verwood.  These postcards are a simple invitation to join us for our carol service at 6pm, on Sunday 18th December.  The ‘star’ may not be visible or tangible like a postcard through your letterbox.  Instead, maybe there is something going on in your own life where you are drawn to search if there is something more to this life?  People’s foundations are being shaken, especially if confidence (trust/faith) has been placed on materiel things, finances, health, comfort, government etc. Most things around us are changing with very few absolutes.  

Millions of people this year around the world have asked Jesus into their life and it has led them on a ‘different path’ than what they were on before they had an encounter with Jesus.  As with the kings who visited Jesus, they were then lead on a different path – this is a path that is available for you.  It is not a path where all your issues or problems suddenly disappear.  It is a path with an assurance that God is with you, it’s a path that is filled with a peace and an awareness that you are loved, and it’s a path with purpose and an incredible destination.   This Christmas, come and meet the Son of God who was born in Bethlehem with the purpose of dying on a cross and taking upon Himself your sin.  He paid the price, so that you wouldn’t have too.  Now that is the most valuable  Christmas gift available.  Your name is on the ‘gift tag’, it’s down to you as with any gift – to accept it.

‘For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God [that is, His remarkable, overwhelming gift of grace to believers] is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord’.
Romans 6:23 (AMP)