A professor was giving a big test one day. He
handed out all of the tests and went back to his
desk to wait.
Once the test was over, the students all handed the
tests back in. The professor noticed that one of the
students had attached a $100 bill to his test with a
note saying “A dollar per point.”
The next class the professor handed the graded
This student got his test back and $56 change.
Over the last few weeks we have talked about joy, grace
and peace at Christmas. This morning we are going to
talk about the most incredible gift that God gives us
through His Son – the gift of salvation.
I’m sure all of us have received some very nice,
thoughtful, generous gifts over the years at Christmas,
but all of them pale in comparison to the gift that God
gave us through the gift of eternal life through Jesus!
Let’s read the Christmas story found in Luke 2:1-20
Angels plan an integral part in Jesus’ birth narrative.
The angel Gabriel came to John to let him know about
the birth of John the Baptist.
Gabriel also came to Mary to let her know that she would
bear a son and His name would be called Jesus.
An angel appeared to Joseph in a dream telling him not
to divorce Mary and reassuring him that the Son Mary
will have was conceived by the Holy Spirit
Salvation Predicted by an Angel
Let’s see those words in Matthew 1:20-21 “But when
he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord
appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Joseph, son of
David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife;
for the Child who has been conceived in her is of
the Holy Spirit. She will bear a Son; and you shall
call His name Jesus, for He will save His people
from their sins.’”
The name Jesus means God is salvation
Jesus is Immanuel – God with us
Jesus is the incarnation of God – God in flesh
The purpose of His birth on that very first Christmas was
to save mankind from their sin by His death and
resurrection from the cross.
Not only did an angel appear to Joseph in a dream but an
angel came to shepherds in the field to announce the
birth of the Savior.
Salvation Announced by an Angel
Notice what happens.
One angel comes to make the announcement to the
shepherds who are in the field watching their flocks by
night. And the glory of the Lord shone around them.
Imagine the glory of the Lord shining in the middle of the
night, talk about a sight and a sign from the Lord!
The angel tells them the good news about the Savior who
has been born in Bethlehem.
Then suddenly a whole multitude of angels join the one
who came to make the birth announcement.
Notice the response of the angels at the good news of the
one being born to provide salvation to man.
Angels Worship the One who Provides Salvation
They worshiped God saying, Glory to God in the highest
Imagine what that choir of angels must have sounded
like. I’m sure it was more than a joyful noise.
But they were more than just a church choir. They also
provided an example to the shepherds of how to express
worship and praise to the Heavenly Father.
And the shepherds definitely followed their example.
They went straight away to find the baby lying in the
manger and after seeing Him, they went back glorifying
God and praising Him.
Isn’t that how every Christian who has received this
amazing gift of salvation should respond? Praising God
and sharing the good news with others.
Now, let’s continue looking at our text in Luke 2
I’m going to read vv.25-32
Simeon Sees Salvation
What do we know about Simeon?
Simeon was righteous and devout.
The Holy Spirit was upon him.
Some argue that he was an old man because the Holy
Spirit had revealed to him that he wouldn’t die until he
saw the Lord’s Christ.
He was in tune with God because as soon as he took the
baby Jesus into his arms he knew he had seen the
salvation God had promised to send to the earth.
Because he was in tune with God and the Holy Spirit was
upon him, he was able to recognize God moving and
keeping His promise.
I wonder if sometimes we miss what God is doing
because we are too self involved or too busy taking care
of others or too distracted by everything but God?!
This Christmas, we should slow down and listen and
watch for God to do something incredible around us.
He has given us salvation, it’s the greatest gift we could
As we wrap up today’s message, I wanted to share just a
couple more verses that talk about Jesus being our
The first is found in Luke 19:9-10 and are Jesus’ words
after Zacchaeus was converted. “And Jesus said to him,
‘Today salvation has come to this house, because
he, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man
has come to seek and to save that which was lost.’”
The purpose of Jesus coming to earth was to provide
salvation to man. It was God’s plan from before the
foundation of the earth. Many didn’t understand or
believe that this tiny baby born of a virgin placed in a
manger could bring salvation to earth, but He did exactly
what God designed.
And the last set of verses come from Peter’s sermon in
Acts 4:8-12 “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit,
said to them, ‘Rulers and elders of the people, if we
are on trial today for a benefit done to a sick man,
as to how this man has been made well, let it be
known to all of you and to all the people of Israel,
that by the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene,
whom you crucified, whom God raised from the
dead – by this name this man stands here before
you in good health. ‘He is the stone which was
rejected by you, the builders, but which became the
chief corner stone. And there is salvation in no one
else; for there is no other name under heaven that
has been given among men by which we must be
Jesus is not just one of many ways to salvation. He is
the only way. There is no other name we can call out to
and be saved. Not Buddah, not Allah, not Hare Krishna,
not anyone except Jesus. He is the way and the truth
and the life. No one comes to the Father except through
So, how should we respond to this Scripture this morning?
It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the
Christmas season with presents, parties and gift cards.
But when we think about the true meaning of Christmas,
how will we respond to the greatest gift of all? The gift of
Jesus and our salvation.
What will you do with your gift of salvation?
Will you receive it?
Will you thank God for it?
Will you share it?
Some people have never heard the nave of Jesus.
What if God wants you to be the one to share the gift of
salvation to someone He wants in His kingdom?
Will you stay in tune with God and listen when He
How can you worship God during this Christmas season
to show Him your gratitude for this amazing one of a kind
gift? There is no one else who can give you the gift of
How will you express your gratitude to God for sending
His Son to bring salvation to you.
Remember that verse, God made Him who knew no sin
to become sin on our behalf so that we might become the
righteousness of God in Him.
When we reflect on that we will want to praise Him and
thank Him and give Him all the glory that He is worthy
The shepherd went and shared what they had seen and
heard with others. It’s our job this Christmas to take the
good news into the world and give it away. What better
way to show gratitude than to share it with someone