The Infant Jesus
Matthew 2:1-8 and Luke 2:8-20
Dr Jeffrey Clark
Question: How do various personalities treat the infant Jesus?
- The wise men
- The great Herod
- The shepherds
- The angels
Quick Review: Looking back at your notes from this week’s teaching, was there anything that particularly caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
My Story: Today our topic has to do with the infant Jesus. According to at least one New Testament account, most people thought Jesus was simply the son of Joseph (Mt 13:55). What do most people in your circles believe about Jesus?
- The shepherds were of a low social class, and considered untrustworthy. Luke consistently describes Jesus as the Savior of social outcasts (lepers, Samaritans, Zaccheus, etc.). What does this say about our posture toward social outcasts?
- The angels worship the infant Jesus. This places Jesus over and above the angels (Heb 1:6). What are the implications of neglecting Jesus’ gospel in light of this truth (Heb 2:1-4)?
- The wise men come from a great distance to worship the infant Jesus. They bring gold, frankincense, and myrrh, gifts fit for a king. If these types of gifts come from pagan internationals, what kind of gifts should come from God’s own people?
Taking It Home: The infant Jesus is treated like a King by shepherds, magi, even angels. How do you treat Jesus like a king? What kind of worship do you ascribe to Him, and what kind of gifts do you bring to Him?
If you are visiting today, we want to extend a special welcome to you and invite you to an informal reception immediately following our worship service. On Saturday, Pastor Jeff is available in the Celebration Center, and on Sunday, Pastor Jeff and his wife Mary will meet you at the Welcome Center in the entryway.
ASPEN RIDGE CHURCH FAMILY
As 2013 comes to a close, we celebrate our Savior’s birth and praise our Father for every good and perfect gift. We reflect on the great things happening at Aspen Ridge Church and need to remember those who unselfishly serve us week in and week out. We will be collecting a love offering during the last weeks of December to then present a gift to the staff as an expression of our appreciation. Please note “Staff Gift” on your check, and place it in the offering by the end of December. Thank you from the Elder Team.
Baptism is a great way to start a new year. If you are interested in participating during the first weekend in January, please contact the church office. There will be an orientation meeting with Pastor Jeff on December 22 at 9:00 AM.
We will break for the holidays on December 22 and 29, resuming January 5 with Dave Furman in a fascinating discussion on “Christianity and its Basis in Law”.
A MESSAGE FROM OUR SECURITY TEAM
At Aspen Ridge, the security of our church family is a top priority. If you have a security question or concern that needs to be reported, please do not hesitate to contact our security team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
END OF THE YEAR GIVING
Please make note that all financial contributions must be postmarked no later than Tuesday, December 31, 2013, or received in the church office by that same date in order to be credited to CY2013 for income tax purposes. Please contact the church office or Bruce Chaffer if you have any questions regarding end of year giving.
CHILDREN’S CHRISTMAS NATIVITY PLAY
Our children have been working hard and are excited to present this play for you! The performances will be on December 21 at 6:00 PM and December 22 at 10:30 AM during our church services. If you are participating in the play, please arrive at 4:30 PM on Saturday afternoon and 10:00 AM on Sunday morning for dress rehearsal.
CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICES
We would like to invite our church family, friends and neighbors to join us on Christmas Eve at 3:30 PM or 5:00 PM. This special service is a great way to begin your holiday celebrations by praising God for the gift of His Son, through fellowship, song and the reading and hearing of His Word.
High Schoolers, it is almost time for “SUPERNATURAL” Winter Camp 2014! The dates are January 24-26 and the cost is $120 for one student or $225 for two. We need your deposit of $50 and a filled-out, signed medical form by December 22 to hold your spot, with the balance due by January 18. Be ready for an exciting program – including drama and music, meeting great friends, a dodge ball tournament, a game room, a swimming pool and much more. Please see our Director of Student Ministries, Hunter Headley, for complete details. Do not miss this super weekend!
Calling all youth! We will be celebrating New Year’s Eve at Evergreen Lake’s Skate-The-Lake Party until 10:00 PM (van transport provided) and then will head back to the church for fun, food and games until 2:00 AM on January 1. Do not miss the revealing of our new name at the stroke of midnight! More details soon.
SOCIAL SECURITY WORKSHOP
On January 21, Aspen Ridge will be hosting a Social Security Workshop led by Bob Blake, Michael Speer and Bronco Ring of Fame football player, Randy Gradishar. The workshop will cover several areas that can affect how much you collect in benefits over your lifetime. Be sure to bring a friend!