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A CHRISTMAS EVE MESSAGE
FROM THE MOTHER OF CHRIST

by Dr. Robert Hymers

A sermon preached on Christmas Eve, December 24, 2005
at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles

“He that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away” (Luke 1:49-53).


These words are very appropriate on Christmas Eve. They are the words of the Virgin Mary in her famous Magnificat, after she learned that she would supernaturally give birth to the only begotten Son of God, or, as John the Baptist called Him,

“The Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world”
       (John 1:29).

John declared Christ to be the sin remover, the one who “taketh away the sin of the world.” That was the reason God sent Jesus to the womb of the Virgin Mary – to take away the sin of the world.

There was, of course, tremendous Satanic and demonic activity focused on stopping this from happening. Satan made an all-out attempt to stop Jesus from securing salvation for us by dying on the Cross as our substitute, in our place, so that our guilt could be done away with by His death.

There is a Devil. There are dark, demonic forces. And they would do all in their power to keep Christ from fulfilling what God sent Him to do to save us from our sins.

Satan used several methods to stop Jesus from going to the Cross to pay for our sins, to save us from judgment and Hell. For instance, Satan whispered in King Herod’s mind the diabolical, demonic thought of killing the baby Jesus. And Herod tried mightily to accomplish Satan’s treacherous plan of killing the Son of God before He could grow to manhood and go to the Cross to redeem us. Under the demonic leading of Satan, King Herod attempted to do his best to slaughter the Son of God before He could accomplish our salvation through His sacrifice on the Cross. But Satan failed in this attempt.

Throughout Jesus’ life and ministry on earth, the Devil used many other methods to stop Christ from going to the Cross, so He could become,

“The Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world”
       (John 1:29).

Satan moved various people to try to stone Christ to death, to incite riots against Christ, to cause people to think of Christ as a demon-possessed madman, and a false prophet.

But all of these plans of Satan fell apart and were unsuccessful. Why was the Devil stopped from his plan of either destroying Christ or discrediting Him? The answer is simple – God was Christ’s Father, and God protected Him so He could accomplish His work on earth, die on the Cross to pay for our sins, and rise physically from the dead to be our living Saviour. God is all-powerful. Satan is not all-powerful. That is why Satan failed and Christ did what God wanted Him to do – going to the Cross, paying for our sins, and rising victorious from the dead to give us life!

The strife is o’er, the battle done; the victory of life is won;
The song of triumph has begun, Alleluia!
He closed the yawning gates of Hell; the bars from Heaven’s high portals fell.
Let hymns of praise His triumphs tell. Alleluia!
   (“The Strife Is O’er,” translated by Francis Pott, 1832-1909).

Now, what does all that mean to you? Does it mean anything important to you? It should! It is the most truly important event that has ever happened in human history. Christ could say with certainty, “Because I live, ye shall live also” (John 14:19). Christ’s death on the Cross, and His triumphant resurrection from the dead give hope to you when it seems that there is no hope. You see, when you trust Christ with all your heart – you are instantly saved by Him from sin, saved by Him from death, saved by Him from the grave, saved by Him from the flames of Hell! Christ can do all that for you the very moment you come to Him by faith and trust Him. I hope you will do that very soon. The moment you come to Jesus Christ by a simple act of faith, you are completely saved and ready for Heaven. The Bible says, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:31). Believe on Christ tonight and your sins will be washed away forever by His Blood – and you will have eternal life. Even if you die in a few weeks or months, you will not go to Hell. How could you? The moment you trust wholeheartedly in Christ alone, He washes all your sins away with His Blood – and gives you eternal life! You are literally born again. You are regenerated by God as a new person when you come to Christ by faith. You are then,

“a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (II Corinthians 5:17).

You will live forever in paradise with God if you will only come to Christ, trust Him, and be saved by Him! Oh, how I pray that you will do that tonight! You could pass from death to life in a few moments if you will come to Christ by faith and trust Him alone for your salvation.

Now, coming back to our passage of Scripture in Luke 1:49-53, we learn many things about salvation in Christ from Jesus’ mother, the Virgin Mary.

I. First, God offers to do great things for you, as He did for Mary.

Look at Luke 1:49. Mary said,

“For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name” (Luke 1:49).

If you are not yet a real Christian, you need God to do great things for you, just as He did for Mary.

Most people think just the opposite. They think they have to do something great or God will not save them. No! No! It’s exactly the opposite. You do not need to do anything great. You don’t have to become “saintly” or perfect! Not at all! God knows that you are a sinner. God knows that you are confused about becoming a real Christian. But God loves you anyway. “For God so loved the world…” (John 3:16). That includes you! God loves you so much that “he that is mighty hath done [for you] great things” (Luke 1:49). All the “great things” that need to be done to save you from sin and give you eternal life have already been done – by Christ Himself! Jesus said,

“Come; for all things are now ready” (Luke 14:17).

All things needed for you to be saved have already been done by Christ. “All things are now ready!” All you have to do is come to Christ by faith and you will instantly be saved; you will instantly be as real a Christian as Mary or the Apostle Paul, or Saint Augustine, or any other saint. Salvation is yours for the taking! Come to Christ. Take hold of Christ by simple faith, and you will be able to say as boldly as Mary did,

“For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name” (Luke 1:49).

God in Christ offers to do great things by saving you from sin and Hell if you will only trust Christ. It can happen in an instant!

II. Second, God shows His mercy on those that fear Him.

Please stand and read verse 50 aloud.

“And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation” (Luke 1:50).

You may be seated. The word “fear” in this verse means to be “in awe” of Him, to “reverence” Him (Strong).

Isn’t it true that you have gone through life so far without thinking very much, or very deeply, about Christ? Isn’t there a great deal of truth in that? You have not been in awe of Christ. You have not had reverence toward Him. Why, you have seldom even thought about Him! Isn’t that true?

But now, tonight, you may be thinking about Christ a little differently. You may be thinking that Christ was, after all, a very remarkable person, in many ways the most unusual and remarkable person who ever lived. Are you perhaps beginning to think new thoughts like that about the Son of God? If you are, I ask you to go a little farther and admit that no one else ever said He loved you so much. He was willing to be tortured and nailed to a Cross to pay for your sins. Admit that no one else rose from physical death, walked out of the grave, and now offers, not only to pardon all your sins – but also this person, Christ, offers you eternal life. Doesn’t that strike an element of “awe” in you?

Young people often say that things are “awesome” that really aren’t. They talk about an “awesome” hamburger, or an “awesome” TV show. Utter nonsense. They have debased the word and overused it. Hamburgers and TV show are not really awesome. But Jesus Christ is awesome – and He and He alone deserves your true reverence. I am asking you tonight to see Him as the only truly awesome person in the world. I am asking you to pay deep respect and honor to Christ. I am asking you, in a sense, to hold Him in such high esteem that you fear Him – not in the sense of being afraid of Him, but in the sense of fearing that you will fall short of humbling yourself before Him, fearing that you will displease Him by not coming to Him and trusting Him, fearing that you will fall short of believing fully in Him and becoming a real Christian.

Do you have enough awe and respect for Christ to believe that He can save you from your sins and give you eternal life? You may say, “I don’t have much faith.” Well, you don’t need much. Just a little faith in Christ is enough. If you come to Christ with just a tiny bit of faith, He will open His arms wide, embrace you in His love, and you will instantly be saved, and you will instantly be converted and become a real Christian. That’s why I say, “Come to Jesus now, even with all your fears, and He will save you.” But this takes us to an even more serious thought, one that ought to make you tremble inside.

III. Third, God scatters the proud in the imagination of their hearts.

Please stand and read aloud these words of Mary in verse 51.

“He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts” (Luke 1:51).

You may be seated.

God threatens to scatter people whose minds are so proud that they follow the imaginations of their own evil hearts, rather than coming to Jesus.

When someone is too filled with pride to come humbly to Christ, God scatters them in “the imagination of their hearts.” What does that mean exactly? Well, it means that you may be given up by God. Then Satan will fill your heart with all kinds of false religion. When that happens, you will no longer listen to the preaching, and you will be “scattered.” The original Greek word translated “scattered” means “to disperse,” “scatter abroad,” “separate.”

This verse warns you not to be proud and reject Christ, for if you are too proud to come to Him and be saved, then you will be scattered by Him. Satanic “imaginations” will come to your mind sooner or later, and you will leave and not want to hear preaching like this any more. But, also, it means that you will be scattered away from all hope of being saved, and, at last, you will be separated from God forever in that place called Hell. In Hell, there is no hope of pardon or salvation – only eternal damnation.

IV. Fourth, God gives many examples of this in the Bible and in lives today.

Please stand and read verse 52 aloud.

“He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree” (Luke 1:52).

You may be seated.

Did you know that both Hitler and Stalin studied in Bible school at one time? Did you know that Charles Darwin, who went on to attack the Bible account of creation, took his undergraduate degree in theology, preparing for the ministry? Did you know that the bloodthirsty Communist dictator Mao Tse Tung went to a Christian school when he was young? But these evil men turned away from Christ. Mary was exactly right,

“He hath put down the mighty from their seats” (Luke 1:52).

Because of their pride and arrogance against Christ, God put these men down, and they are now tormented in the flames of Hell. But Mary continued,

“He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree” (Luke 1:52).

I once knew a little missionary woman who went for many years to China from her native England. Her name was Gladys Aylward. She helped many Chinese children escape from the cruel hands of the Communist dictator Mao Tse Tung. Now he is in Hell – but Gladys Aylward has been exalted by God to a high and honored place in Heaven.

“He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree” (Luke 1:52).

Don’t be like those proud and haughty dictators. Don’t be like Charles Darwin. Come to Jesus without pride. Humble your heart and trust the Son of God – and He will save you.

V. Fifth, God fills the hungry with good things, while sending the rich away empty.

Please stand and read verse 53 aloud.

“He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away” (Luke 1:53).

You may be seated. “He hath filled the hungry with good things…” Jesus said,

“Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled” (Matthew 5:6).

If you are hungry and thirsty for salvation, if you hunger and thirst for Jesus to pardon your sins and save you – you will be filled. Christ will give you pardon, forgiveness and eternal life. But verse 53 continues,

“…and the rich he hath sent empty away” (Luke 1:53).

People who base their whole lives on making money, and have no time for God, will be sent away by Jesus into the fire that never shall be quenched.

“Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched” (Mark 9:48).

I hope that will not happen to you. I hope you will hunger and thirst after Jesus Christ until you find Him and are saved by Him from your sins.

These words are very appropriate tonight, on Christmas Eve. They are the words of the Virgin Mary, when she learned that God had called on her to be the mother of Christ. I pray that you will listen to Mary and come to Jesus, and be saved, and become a true Christian who will live forever in God’s Kingdom!

(END OF SERMON)
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Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: Luke 1:46-53.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“O Little Town of Bethlehem” (by Phillips Brooks, 1835-1893).


THE OUTLINE OF

A CHRISTMAS EVE MESSAGE
FROM THE MOTHER OF CHRIST

by Dr. Robert Hymers

“He that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away” (Luke 1:49-53).

(John 1:29; 14:19; Acts 16:31; II Corinthians 5:17)

I.   God offers to do great things for you, as He did for Mary,
Luke 1:49; John 3:16; Luke 14:17.

II.  God shows His mercy on them that fear Him, Luke 1:50.

III. God scatters the proud in the imagination of their hearts,
Luke 1:51.

IV. God gives many examples of this in the Bible and in lives
today, Luke 1:52.

V.  God fills the hungry with good things, while sending the
rich away empty, Luke 1:53; Matthew 5:6; Mark 9:48.