It’s About Jesus
Rev. Toh Nee Lim | On 30, Dec 2018
Scripture Reading: Matthew 1: 21-25
‘And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying “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. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus.’
Matthew 1:23-25 is a prophecy from Isaiah concerning a unique birth, a unique name and a unique ministry. It is a unique birth because a virgin shall conceive a child. The sex of the child is mentioned specifically; ‘the virgin shall bear a Son.’ The name of the child is unique because He shall be called Immanuel which means ‘God with us.’ Joseph will call him Jesus. Jesus means ‘Jehovah is salvation’ or Jehovah, the Savior: describing a unique ministry. So, Christmas celebration is about Jesus. Now, how does this apply to me personally.
1. A Unique Birth
Matthew 1;23 says, ‘Behold a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son.’ Ordinarily a new baby changes everything in the home. Pastor Lily and I fought a lot in the beginning of our marriage, because of adjustment, ministry and values of life. But when Joy came into our family, even though she was not a prepared baby, she brought a lot of joy into our home. The innocence, the cuteness, harmlessness and purity of a baby brings such a refreshing atmosphere into the family. She definitely was a buffer when there was a nervous tension between Pastor Lily and I. The yaya would bring baby Joy to meet us at the gate of the house when we came home. The yaya had tied the little hair that she had which definitely looked like a coconut tree planted on top of her head. When we return home from church office after work, young as she may be; the moment, she recognized us she would be kicking her leg with excitement to see us and we would embrace her with satisfaction and pure bliss. Later we have another baby and we call her Jan because as the name implied, she has been a gift of God to us. I want to speak to you this morning about a baby that cannot be compared with any other babies forever and ever. He is born in this day; Christmas Day. He has come into your life. Wake up for all who think life is hopeless. This baby has come into your life. It is a virgin birth. A virgin birth is an act of God, the hand of God is involved and it is a new thing that has never been heard of. God is doing a new thing in your life. Something powerful and wonderful is taking place in your life because this baby is special and this baby changes everything in your life. Jesus has come into your life. Joy has come into your life. The gift of God has come into our life. When we see Jesus, we see favor and grace coming into our life. A refreshing and wonderful change has come into your life. Jesus in your life is beyond comparison and you will experience bliss and embrace of God. Life will not be a disappointment but satisfaction. So you must understand this important truth. The fact that God has come into your life means you are special to him. You are important and treasured by him.
2. A Unique Name
His name shall be called Immanuel which means ‘God with us.’ That is the most wondering thing that has happened in your life. God is with you and it is the work of God. And if God is for you who can be against you. Why are you afraid of some many things when God is with you and for you? I am not talking about the President being with you. I am not talking about the richest man being with you. I am talking about God being with you; the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords with you. God has made the first move and He is with you now. I believe God knows what you are going through right now. I believe God knows what you have been going through in life. Sometimes we wonder whether God cares for us. Every now and then, we wonder whether God empathize and sympathize with what we are going through in life. God knows that when we go through the bewilderment of life. Therefore, He became Immanuel to tell you right now He is with you at this very moment. He is saying, ‘I am with you even unto the end of the world.’
3. A Unique Ministry
But then you say, ‘But Pastor, you don’t know who I am and what I have done.
Matthew 1:25 says, ‘Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus.’
Joseph call him Jesus. This name Jesus in Hebrew is Joshua, which means ‘YHWH saves,’ or ‘YHWH brings salvation’, or ‘YHWH is Savior.’ The name YHWH reflects deity as the covenant making God; God wants to make a covenant with you and he wants to be your savior, redeemer. Human breaks covenant, but God is loyal to His word, promise and covenant. So what must you do? Call upon the name of the LORD. The word ‘LORD’ in all capital means YHWH. The people of God has learned a secret when they are in trouble. In Gen 4:26 the bible says, ‘men began to call upon the name of the LORD (YHWH)’
Jesus means Savior. Another word for Savior is deliverer. His name means that he has come to save you from your sin. He is here to deliver you from bondages. Just recently I met this lady and asked how is she? Immediately she went into an account of the stress of her life, her husband being away for months, her three children being such a handful; one giving her extra headache. To compound the problem, she had health issues and had to see a doctor. Well, the doctor couldn’t really identify her problem; only to say she is experiencing tremendous stress. She had a troubled mind and couldn’t sleep at night. Immediately I felt the need to have SOZO with her. Though her eyes were closed she was in tears. In the midst of the SOZO she says, ‘Pastor I want to tell you something that I have not told anybody in my entire life; not even to my husband, parents or siblings. She confessed that she did something wrong when she was young and it tormented her for more than 15 years. I said that I know what is wrong with her life right now. It has to do with the incident 15 years old. And she is tormented and stressed and it affected her relationship with her family and it has definitely affected her health. When I brought her to the father’s room she said that the throne room of God is empty. I had to pray a few times with her and finally she saw a bright light but still no God the father. The throne room of God is empty. It means she has no relationship with God and it was that incident 15 years ago, that she felt God is no more with her. God is not there. I said, ‘Do not believe the lies of the devil. Because the bible says, if you confess your sins, God is faithful and just to forgive you and cleanse you of all unrighteousness. Jesus represents a unique ministry. Jesus said himself that he came into the world not to save the good people but the sinners. Jesus means Savior and he shall save you from your sin. Jesus means deliverer and He will deliver you from bondages.
Jesus came for three distinct purposes.
a. To fully reveal the Father
b. To give humans an example to follow
c. To redeem mankind from sin
How about you today? Have you being tormented and discouraged over your sins. Ashamed of your sins. Do you feel very down to a point of hopelessness and it is affecting your health, your sleep pattern and your family? Jesus also means salvation. Jesus means he will save you from your sin. He saves you from the penalty of sin, from the power of sin and from the very presence of sin. To save people from sin is the work of God and who can forgive sin except God. And if God can forgive you who are you not to forgive yourself. The only thing you need to do is to say, ‘Father, forgive me, I have sinned.’ The best example is the thief on the cross. Luke 23:39-43 says, ‘One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us! But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong. And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom! And He (Jesus) said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with me in Paradise.’ Yes, you deserve the condemnation and you are suffering justly for what you have done. But Jesus’ unique ministry is to save people like you. The fact that his name is Jesus means God is willing ad able to forgive you of your sin. This baby was born on Christmas to bring order to our disobedient life, to bring life into our weaknesses and frustration and cause us to live again. This morning if you are dead in sin, Jesus is come to waken us into life anew.
Many times, I get discouraged over my sins. I am ashamed of my sins. There are times I feel very down to a point of hopelessness. The devil is also very fast to remind me of my sins. There are times I come to a point that I don’t know what to do. But then I am reminded that Jesus shall save His people from their sins. I am part of His people, God’s people. It is wonderful to be a child of God. Because you can come to him, and tell Him of your sins and He will cleanse you of your sin. If you have not accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can come to this ONE and Savior and He will save you of your Sins. And if you are a child of God, His people, he can still save you of your sins. How wonderful it is to be cleanse and forgiven. Because it takes away the guilt, it makes your soul and spirit clean and pure. This savior not only saves you externally but also internally. The Jewish name for Jesus is Joshua, and Joshua means Jehovah is salvation. This baby brings salvation. This baby is here to redeem us from our iniquities. This baby would grow up into the Savior who would save God’s people from their sins.