In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth . . . and she wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. (John 1:1-2; Luke 2:7)
When we read the story of the first Christmas we are entering into a story that began long before that morning in Bethlehem. The story of Jesus is the story of God who is always moving in grace, committed to our transformation and inviting us into his incarnational mission in the world.
Consider How You Read The Scripture
Grace – Understanding grace as central to the character of God and the gospel; experiencing grace as we live with God and for God.
Transformation – Being transformed by the Holy Spirit together with the word of God; Participating in God’s story of love and rescue.
Mission – Being led by Scripture to join in the work of Christ; Embracing a Spirit-propelled mission.
QUESTIONS: AIn your own words, describe Grace, Transformation and Mission. How are these three commitments connected? What do you think is meant by the phrase “we do not just read the Bible, the Bible reads us?” How have you experienced this?
Dwell In the Scripture
Enter fully into the final hearing of the Christmas story, imagining that you are there as a first hand witness to the events described. As you read consider the questions below, invite the Holy Spirit to bring freshness in this passage. Read the passage slowly and preferably out loud. Read or listen to the Christmas Story
QUESTIONS: What do you see? What do you feel? How does this story connect with your experience of grace, your conversion, call to discipleship, and your call to be missional?
Move With the Scripture
QUESTIONS: How does the story encourage you and challenge you to join in the work of God? Early Covenanters were called “Mission Friends,” what would it look like to be mission friends in our context at Creekside, in our community and around the world?
I hope you have benefited from and enjoyed our journey together in the season of Advent through the story of the first Christmas. Join us Tuesday night for our candle light service from 5:30pm to 6:30pm.