Introduction: Christmas has become a commercial holiday in many countries, celebrated with lights and banquets and gifts. But the true Christmas story is far more exciting – worth celebrating in every home!
The Bible tells the true Christmas story:
“Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.’
“All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: ‘Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel’ which means, God with us” (Matthew 1:18-23).
Christmas celebrates the unique birth of Jesus, who came as Immanuel, meaning “God with us.” The next five days, discover how the true story of Immanuel’s birth may save you from your sins and lead you to a relationship with God!
Day 1: Who was Jesus’ Father?
Jesus was unlike any baby ever born because He was born of a virgin. So who is the true Father of Jesus? The Bible explains that at Jesus’ birth, the angel Gabriel told the virgin Mary,
“‘Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!’ But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.’
“And Mary said to the angel, ‘How will this be, since I am a virgin?’ And the angel answered her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God’” (Luke 1:26-35).
As God’s Son, Jesus existed eternally in the Godhead (the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit), yet God the Father sent the Son to earth to become the perfect God-Man. Jesus is fully God and fully human in one Person (John 1:1; Colossians 2:9; 1 John 4:2-3).
When Jesus was 12 years old, He already recognized God was His true Father. One day, Mary and Joseph couldn’t find Jesus anywhere. Finally, they found Him in the Temple (the place of worship), amazing the teachers with His wisdom in the Scriptures. When Mary chided Jesus for causing them to worry, He replied, "Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?" (Luke 2:49b).
God is called Jesus’ Father in other passages as well:
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God” (John 3:16-18).
Jesus came to save those who believe in Him. Find out tomorrow how Jesus’ birthplace was predicted centuries before His birth!