The Christmas (Back) Story
I. In the BEGINNING…AGAIN. (v. 1-5; Gen 1:1)
A. A WORD is worth a 1000 PICTURES
B. CREATOR of EVERYTHING. (v.2-3)
C. The SOURCE of LIFE. (v.4)
D. The POWER of LIGHT. (v.5)
John’s gospel doesn’t contain a birth narrative. It’s as if he zooms out from the manger to see a bigger picture, and not just geographically, but chronologically. He goes way back to before anything else was and reminds us that even then…with God, as God, was the Word.
1. Kid’s Question: What is something that you have made that you really like?
2. If you could go back and start over in any area of your life, what would that be?
3. Does the “Trinity” have any relevant meaning to your day to day life? Why or why not? And should it?
II. The RESPONSE is SURPRISING. (v.10-14)
A. What SHOULD happen DOESN’T. (v.10-11)
B. What SHOULDN’T happen DOES. (v.12-14)
1. HUMANS in God’s FAMILY. (v.12-13)
2. The Word in FLESH with US. (v.14)
3. We have SEEN his GLORY. (v.14)
Just like that night in Bethlehem, everything seems to go differently than we would expect. Just as the Messiah comes to a stable, born to young Jewish couple beneath the poverty line, John reminds us that the coming of Jesus didn’t go like anyone expected. And there’s bad news in that…and good news too.
4. When has something happened in a way that you didn’t expect?
5. When have you “seen” or experienced the glory (the “heaviness”) of God?
III. The CALLING of the WITNESS in 2020. (v.6-9,15-18)
A. To point BEYOND us to JESUS. (Mt. 28:18-20)
B. To model GRACE and TRUTH. (Acts 4:13; Phil. 1:27; 2 Cor. 2:14-17)
C. To KNOW and to make KNOWN. (v.14,18; Jn 17:3; Phil. 3:8-9)
So what does this backstory of the first Christmas mean to us today, especially as we reflect on the past year and look toward the coming one? Our role follows nicely after the example of John the Baptist, the one who was sent to “testify to the light.”
6. What are some specific ways you would like to be a witness in 2020? Where (specifically) would you like to live that out?
7. What are three specific things that you can do to model BOTH grace and truth to the world around you this coming week?
8. If you were to describe what you know about Jesus and how you know it, what would you say?