Make Room for Jesus

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Luke 2:1–7 (NIV 1900)
And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Beth-lehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
This is kind of hard to fathom, isn’t it? Jesus, THE WORD, gave up his majesty, left His Kingdom in Heaven and came to earth to be born into a mortal fleshly body as an infant to save all humanity from sin and eternal death and there was no room for Him at the Inn. John 1:1-4
John 1:1–4 KJV 1900
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
There was no room for Jesus at the Inn. The Inn keeper did not care enough to make room for Jesus. So, Jesus was born in a filthy manger, that was nothing more than a tub that was carved out of stone to hold the feed for the animals to eat out of.
The Inn keeper didn’t even care enough to provide room at the Inn for Jesus. This gives us some insight to the financial status of Joseph and Mary. Maybe if Joseph had the financial wherewithal to slip the Inn keeper a fifty or a hundo, the Inn keeper might have cared a bit more about finding room at the Inn for Jesus. The Inn keeper simply did not care. There was no room for Jesus. Let that not be true for us, when it comes to making room for Jesus in our hearts!
Luke 2:8–20 KJV 1900
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, Good will toward men. And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Beth-lehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
We see here that God sent angels to announce the birth of Jesus. An angel announced the birth of Jesus to the shepherds. We only see an angelic announcement a couple of other times in all of scripture. This was a HUGE deal to GOD! This very event had been prophesied for over a thousand years! Our God, the Creator of Heaven and earth, made His grand entrance into this world, in the form of a human infant. What does it take for you and I to make room for Jesus? If it was such a HUGE event to Heaven, shouldn’t it be a HUGE event in our lives?
Here is one of the many thing as that I love about Jesus: He was willing to come down from Heaven, where everything is perfect, and enter into the world, where everything is imperfect. He entered into an imperfect situation, where everything is kind of dark and dirty and dusty to bring about total redemption. Not only did that happen in the manger scene, on that first Christmas, I think God is in the business of doing the very same thing in your heart and mine. Maybe we should ask the question: Why would Jesus want to come into the room of my own heart, which is often dark and dusty and sometimes not caring about the things that I should care about. But the truth is that when we make room for Jesus, He has this way of taking that which is dark and dusty, so He can redeem us from the inside out. So, make room for Jesus this Christmas!
So, what does that look like? I think it looks like a lot of things. Maybe it is reaching out to someone who is alone. Maybe it starts with reading the Gospel narrative in Luke Chapter 2 to remind us of the birth of Jesus. Maybe it is to teach our children or our grandchildren about our wonderful Savior. Maybe to serve or encourage someone. Maybe we just need to reflect on the year of 2023 and thank God for all that good that He has done in our lives. Maybe some of us will invite Jesus into our hearts for the very first time. Maybe some will be Baptized.
It is also about making room for the mission of Jesus.
Please notice that it was mentioned twice in the scriptures that we just read, that “the baby was wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger.” I believe that there is special significance to anything that is mentioned more than once in the Bible
The manger was typically cut out of stone and used for a feeding trough for the animals.
Now, Let’s go to Luke 23:50–53 “And, behold, there was a man named Joseph, a counseller; and he was a good man, and a just: (The same had not consented to the counsel and deed of them;) he was of Arimathaea, a city of the Jews: who also himself waited for the kingdom of God. This man went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. And he took it down, and wrapped it in linen, and laid it in a sepulchre that was hewn in stone, wherein never man before was laid.” Luke 23:55 “And the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how his body was laid.”
These details are significant, because we see in the beginning of Luke that Joseph and Mary wrapped their baby in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manager, which was typically cut out of a big stone. At the end of Luke, we find a different Mary and a different Joseph, who took Jesus’s body and wrapped it in linen and laid it a sepulchre that was hewn of stone.
That is not a coincidence. Luke uses it a literary tool to remind us that the birth of Jesus was intended to point us to something greater! Jesus was not just any baby born into this world. He wasn’t just any King that was born into this world. Jesus was God in flesh that came into this world with a very specific mission in mind. His mission would ultimately be to sacrifice himself for the sake of all humanity. He was born with a purpose. He was born with a mission from His very inception. We don’t only make room for Jesus, we make room for His mission.
Now, here is what is especially intriguing: These were not the only two times in scripture that Jesus was wrapped in some form of cloth.
We will now go to the book of John and see that as Jesus was preparing for His Last Supper with His disciples, shortly before he was about to be crucified, he wrapped a towel around his own waist and began to wash the disciple’s feet. John 13:4-5
John 13:4–5 KJV 1900
He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.
Three different times, Jesus was wrapped in some form of cloth.
There is very real significance to that.
The first cloth at his birth, the swaddling cloths that this infant’s body was wrapped in characterizes His presence: “GOD IS WITH US”
Matthew 1:23 KJV 1900
Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
The second cloth, which was the towel around his waist, reminds us that “HE CAME TO SERVE” and He did exactly that with every single person that he ever interacted with.
Matthew 20:28 KJV 1900
Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
The third cloth, when His dead body was wrapped in linen after His Crucifixion, as He was being prepared for His burial, reminds us that “HE WAS A GOD THAT CAME TO BE A SACRIFICE”
Listen to this:
That is who Jesus was and still is to this very day.
He came to be present with us.
He came to serve.
He came to be a sacrifice.
We want to be a people that just don’t make room for Jesus, but a people that also make room for His mission.
What does that mean for you and I?
That means that we too are moved to be present for other people. We too are willing and able to serve other people. That we too are prepared to make sacrifices for the sake of Him and others, because that’s who He is and that’s who we serve.
And so this Christmas - make room for Jesus. This Christmas - make for His mission. As we think about PRESENT, SERVICE, SACRIFICE
That’s what we do as a church family!
We support one another emotionally by being present and listening. We pray for each other. We share our most intimate and powerful testimonies, right here in this very Chapel every Friday night to encourage each other. We witness to those that are lost. We introduce Jesus to our fellow man. We Baptize new Believers. We Re-Baptize other Believers that because of backsliding or whatever, they feel the need to recommit their lives to Christ.
We believe that God loves every single human being and we believe that those who are far from God, matter to God and we are willing to do whatever it takes short of sin to reach people that are far from God to welcome them into a life changing eternity altering relationship with Jesus .
We make room for Jesus and we also make room for His mission.
What about you? Is what is most important to Heaven also what is most important to you. Is the character of who Jesus is, the very character that you are willing to embody.
Make room for Jesus this Christmas. Make room for His mission, because when you do, God will do a great work in you and a great work through you, all for His Glory!
What an honor it is to be used of GOD!
Let’s pray.....
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