Genesis 3:14-21 What a promise in the darkest of days! Adam and Eve had just lost the beautiful face-to-face fellowship that they had had with their God. Now because of their sin they were condemned to death. Out of that darkness comes the promise of enmity between their seed and Satan’s seed. The promise would crush the head of Satan. Christ is that promise. In this month in which we celebrate His birth we must gave thanks for the enmity between us and Satan. We must also live lives in the hope of the final return of that promise. Sing or read Psalter 4.
Genesis 22:15-19 The preceding verses of this chapter give the wonderful account of Abraham offering up Isaac. Our verses today repeat the blessing that God has given to Abraham namely that in him all the nations would be blessed. This blessing would only come by way of Christ and His death on the cross. This should be our focus in this time of the year. Do you young people walk as true spiritual seed of Abraham? Or are you trying to get to heaven because you physically belong to and attend church? There is a big difference! Think about these things during this season of the year. Sing or read Psalter 432 especially stanzas 3 and 4.
Genesis 49:8-12 In the Old Testament God little by little showed from whom He would send Christ. The line went from Abraham to Isaac to Jacob. Now in this text we see that Christ would come from Judah. The tribe of Judah would be the leader in Israel. They would rule their brethren until Christ appeared. Here Christ is called Shiloh or peace. Does the name of Christ give you peace? Sometimes we make this season too hectic. If we remember that Christ is the Prince of Peace, it may help make this season what it should be. Sing or read Psalter 101 especially stanzas 1, 4, and 5.
Numbers 24:15-19 Our God moves in mysterious ways! This is borne out by today’s passage. The false prophet Balaam, even though it was not his desire, was compelled to make this beautiful prophecy of Christ. Here Christ is called the Star of Jacob. A star is a beautiful heavenly object. Christ is a beautiful heavenly being. This Star would also be a scepter. He would rule over not only Israel but over all nations of the world. Are you looking for that Star? Are you bowing before the Scepter even in this time of the year? Sing or read Psalter 302.
Deuteronomy 18:15-19 Christ is a Prophet. But His words of His prophecy cannot be ignored because they are the words of God. God’s word is perfect and cannot be changed. This Prophet will come to a particular people. This people is the church of God who are elect from the foundations of the world. Are we listening to His words as they are proclaimed by Christ through the preaching each week? Verse nineteen speaks of a grievous chastisement to those who do not listen. Let us listen to the words of Christ which are the wonderful words of life given by God. Sing or read Psalter 42.
II Samuel 7:12-17 David had desired to make a house for Jehovah. God through the prophet Nathan had told him that Solomon would make such a house. We also have a promise that it would be from David’s seed that Christ would come. David was a type of Christ in that he fought the battles of God. Solomon was a type of Christ in his wisdom and in the peaceful kingdom over which he reigned. From these two men would come Christ who would be all-wise and all-powerful. His throne is eternal. It will never pass away. Let us look to the eternal kingdom of our king, Christ. Sing or read Psalter 367 especially stanzas 4 and 5.
Psalm 40:1-8 Do you desire to do the will of your heavenly Father? Christ did. In this Psalm of David we have prophecy of such desire. The will spoken here is obedience to God’s law. Christ fulfilled that law in that He was obedient even unto the death of the cross. We must be obedient to that law as a means of gratitude for the salvation earned for us by Christ on the cross. Even as Christ was obedient in every point of the law, we, too, must strive for perfect obedience to that law. May this be our desire all through our lives. Sing or read Psalter 111.
Psalm 118:19-29 In His life on this earth, Christ had nothing to recommend Him for greatness. His family was not important in Israel. They lived in a town of no great importance. Yet from that unimportant beginning came the cornerstone of the most beautiful structure ever – the Church! The Church rests upon and gains its strength from Christ. This all happened because it was the Lord’s doing. Let’s not make more out of the baby Jesus than what God makes out of Him. Let’s remember that He was despised and rejected of man. Let’s remember from His lowly birth came our great salvation – nothing more and nothing less! Sing or read Psalter 319 especially stanzas 1, 2, and 5.
Proverbs 30:1-6 Do you know the answers to the questions of verse four? Do you know the name of the Son of God? Notice that truth as you ponder these verses. Jesus is the Son of God! He is not mere man born of a woman. He is the Son of God. Being the Son of God He can claim all the attributes belonging to God. Are you celebrating this idea this Christmas? We may not worship the baby Jesus in His human nature alone. We must worship Jesus as the Son of God. Many will sing and speak of Jesus in this month. Not all will rejoice because He is the Son of God. Make that your rejoicing this Christmas. Sing or read Psalter 3 especially stanzas 1 and 4. Use the tune to Psalter 15 to make it more meaningful.
Isaiah 7:10-16 The book of Isaiah is replete with prophecies of Christ and His coming. Some of them, such as this one, were given to men who did not prize the word of the Lord. They scoffed at Jehovah and His word. In this passage Jesus is foretold to be born of a virgin. What a wonder! But then is that no more a wonder than the wonder of our salvation? He is given the name Immanuel or God with us. What a comfort! Jesus is our comfort in that He came to bring us salvation. Sing or read Psalter 28.
Isaiah 9:1-7 Israel was groping in the days before the captivity. They had troubles because they were not following the ways of God. To the faithful Israel Isaiah brought the words of comfort of today’s passage. A child would be born who would be Wonderful for His people. He would be the Counselor of the oppressed. He would be Mighty God and Everlasting Father for all of God’s children. And He would be the Prince of Peace who would bring contentment into the souls of all the elect. He would restore the glory of the kingdom of David. This is not an earthly glory but a heavenly one. Thanks be to God for such joy. Sing or read Psalter 125 especially stanzas 1, 2 and 5-7.
Isaiah 11:1-10 Jesus is the rod of Jesse. A rod stands for power and authority. With a rod the shepherd guided the sheep from place to place. With a rod Moses led the people of Israel from Egypt to Canaan. Jesus is the rod that guides the elect sheep from the Egypt of this earth to the heavenly Canaan. Are you obeying the rod? Do you wish to go where He leads? If you do not wish to follow Jesus, reread verse ten. Notice the glorious rest He gives His people. Isn’t that your desire? Sing or read Psalter 110.
Isaiah 35 Does the joy of this season get us down? Do we sometime become weary of the whole thing? Could it be that our focus is wrong? This text speaks of people who seemingly have reason to be down. They have spiritual problems for which there seems to be no solution. This chapter not only gives solution to those who are spiritually down, it also gives to us our focus in this season of the year. The focus should be on salvation from sin. When we make that our focus our joy will be great. We will not spend our time on the superficial but rather on the heavenly. Then we will have true joy and gladness in this season of the year. Sing or read Psalter 398.
Isaiah 40:1-8 Comfort is never more needed than in these days of spiritual darkness and sin. Israel of old felt a need of comfort. Isaiah brought to them the word that the king was coming. We in the church have the same comfort The KING is coming! Are you preparing the way for Him? If the president or some other government official were coming to your house, wouldn’t you make some preparations? Christ is coming! Are you making spiritual preparations? If you are, then you will feel the comfort that He alone can bring. We know this is true because of the words of verses 5 and 8. Sing or read Psalter 125 especially stanzas 2-4.
Isaiah 53 What Christ are you waiting for? Is it the Christ about whom the world celebrates Christmas? Their Christ is a baby that remains a baby. Their Christ never matures into the Christ of today’s passage. This Christ is not handsome. He is not the world leader that the Jews of His day wanted. He will not be the man that leads the world into Utopia. This Christ is despised and rejected of men. This Christ dies without fighting back. This Christ dies a horrible death. This Christ is our Savior. Thanks be to God for this Christ! Is this your Christ? Sing or read Psalter 185 especially stanzas 1 and 5-7.
Isaiah 60:1-5 “A light to lighten the Gentiles” was old Simeon’s testimony as he held Jesus in his arms in the temple. What a glorious idea for us who are Gentiles. We are brought into the church after Pentecost. We are engrafted into the vine. Christ’s glory will be seen upon us as well as the Old Testament church. Are you reflecting this glory in this season of the year? Do your songs show that you have the light of Christ in your life? Is your celebration of CHRISTmas Christ-centered? Sing or read Psalter 362.
Jeremiah 31:12-1 God used the wicked Herod to fulfill the prophecy of this passage when Herod ordered all baby boys two and under to be killed. Satan was also at work in Herod’s heart because he did not want the Christ to die for our sins and crush his head. This passage is a passage of hope. Israel had hope that even though they were going into captivity their children would return to the land of promise. We, too, can gain hope from these verses because we know that the powers of this world cannot prevent our salvation or our children’s salvation. What a comfort! What a Christ! Sing or read Psalter 361.
Hosea 11 The Old Testament is full of types and shadows concerning Christ. Here in this prophecy we see another. Looking back the first verse refers to Israel coming out of Egypt under Moses. Looking ahead it prophecies of Jesus coming out of Egypt where He had fled with Joseph and Mary. For us it has this significance. Egypt is always the picture of Hell in the Bible. Christ descended into the depths of Hell while on the cross. Sustained by His divine nature, He returned from Hell and our salvation was accomplished. Do we flee the Egypt of this world today? Do we wish to leave it and go to heaven? Sing or read Psalter 307 especially stanza 1.
Micah 5:1-7 Bethlehem the least among Judah was the birth place of our Lord. Things have not changed much since them. The Church is small in the world. It will never be great nor should it wish to be great. We should be content to be the body of Christ. Bethlehem did not know the glory that was theirs. There was no room in the inn. Christ had to be born in a cattle stall. Do we know the glory that is ours? Are we anxious to glorify Him as the Christ of our salvation? Think about it young people, as we draw closer to Christmas. Sing or read Psalter 380.
Malachi 3:1-6 How do we receive the message that Christ is coming? Do we read His word and then ignore it, or do we “take heed as unto a light that shineth in a dark place?” This passage contains words of great warning for the unprepared. The judgment mentioned for the wicked is awful. This passage also contains words of great comfort for the elect They are found in verse 6. If it were not for the sure covenant promises we would be as the wicked. We would deserve their judgments. Celebrate this week, child of God, but celebrate Christ our Savior. Sing or read Psalter 426 especially stanzas 1, 3 and 4.
Malachi 4 The last chapter of the Old Testament contains the final written promises of Christ. Israel was about to go into four hundred years of silence before Christ made His appearance. The words we read here are truly blessed for the child of God. Those that fear His name will enjoy the healing mercies of the Sun of righteousness. There is a command found here. We must remember the laws of Moses and do them if we are to experience the benefits of Christ. From our perspective we can also see that verse five speaks of Christ’s final return on the clouds of heaven. Are we watching? Are we waiting? Sing or read Psalter 29.
Luke 1:13-17 The words of today’s passage are the fulfillment of yesterday’s. For four hundred years the faithful in Israel waited for the appearance of the forerunner. This is His announcement. To two unlikely parents comes the announcement of the birth of a son. This was not any son. This was the son who would prepare the way for the Christ. We, too, await the announcement that Christ will return. His return will not be heralded by a John the Baptist, but rather His return will be heralded by signs in nature, the world and the Christ. Are you waiting anxiously even as you celebrate the birth of Christ? Sing or read Psalter 170.
Luke 1:26-33 Once more the angel Gabriel makes an appearance on earth. Once more he brings both a bewildering and joyful message. Mary at first did not understand how she could be the mother of Christ. Once it was made clear to her, she rejoices at the announcement that at last a woman in Israel would be the mother of the promised seed. That Christ is a Savior is bewildering to some today. Let us look at His birth through the eyes of faith and then respond with great joy to the wondrous things He has done for us. Sing or read Psalter 320.
Luke 1:46-55 Mary went and spent three months with her cousin Elisabeth. What do you think these two God-fearing women talked about? Was it babies and clothes and other such things? Of course they did! But they also spent time in spiritual conversation. How were they to care for two such special babies? They knew that their sons were not ordinary children. They knew that they had special tasks. They talked as women who feared the Lord. They knew the Scriptures. How else can you explain the words of our passage today? Do you know the Scriptures well enough to understand tomorrow’s importance? Sing or read Psalter 272 especially stanzas 1, 3, and 5.
Matthew 1:18-25 I am glad that you are taking time today to listen to God’s word. This recounts the fulfillment of Isaiah 7:14. Christ was born from a virgin! Do you believe that? Many in the world wish to steal this wonder from us! They would have us to believe that Mary was only a young woman. But of course they wish to steal more than this wonder from us. They wish to steal the wonder of our salvation from us. After all Jesus means Jehovah Salvation! Embrace the wonder today. Give thanks for it. Do not leave Jesus in the manger. Make sure you worship Him as He was on the cross. Sing or read Psalter 47:5, 6, 7, 10, and 11.
Luke 2:8-14 The baby Jesus’ birth was announced to different people as recorded in Scripture. These people were not uncles, aunts, grandparents, and other family members. Some of these people were shepherds. That these shepherds awaited the announcement, is easy to figure out. They did not mock; no, they said, “Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.” How did you receive the message of Christ’s birth yesterday? How are you going to receive the good news of the gospel today in church? Will you be as anxious as the shepherds to worship? Sing or read Psalter 228.
Luke 2:25-35 How do you wait for the Lord’s Christ’s return? Are you like Simeon frequenting God’s house and His word? Will you recognize Him even as Simeon did? What about your life? Is it in order as you await Christ’s return? It was no accident that Simeon was in the temple that day. He belonged there. We must be like Simeon. This is God’s commandment! Watch and be ready for the day of our Lord. Sing or read Psalter 428 especially stanzas 1, 9, and 10.
Luke 2:36-39 On top of Simeon’s example comes that of Anna. Anna was a remnant of the ten lost tribes. She, too, loved the Lord her God with all of her being. She, too, frequented the house of the Lord waiting the day when the Christ would be revealed to her. I believe that this godly woman was also busy doing alms deeds in Israel because when she saw the Christ her immediate reaction was to tell others who shared her faith. What about us? Are we Simeons and Annas? Are we waiting? Do we spread the gospel to all those who wait redemption? Sing or read Psalter 195.
Matthew 2:1-11 Approximately two years after Christ’s birth another group came to worship Him. These were Gentiles. These were the first fruits of the church of the New Dispensation. They, too, had been watching. Their faith, also, was rewarded by God. They saw the star, they left their homes, and they came and worshiped the Christ. The nation of Israel did not want a savior, but God’s people did. Lowly shepherds, aged saints, and Gentiles longed for their Savior with the faith of a little child. May we ask God that he give us that faith to await the second coming. Sing or read Psalter 187.
John 1:29-24 “Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.” This was John’s message to the people around the Jordan and to all of Israel. This is the message to which we must listen. Christ the lamb who would be slain for our sins. This is the Christ of Christmas – a lamb with blood pouring from His body. This is the Christ we must worship. Why? This is the only way that our sins are removed. Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift. Sing or read Psalter 140.
John 1:43-51 As we come to the last day of this year it is good for us to hear the words, “Follow me.” Are you following Jesus day by day as you walk on this earth? Do you follow Him in whatever circumstances He has placed you? Are you going to follow Him tonight as you prepare for the Sabbath? We don’t follow of ourselves. We only follow when He leads us by grace. We are commanded to follow. Are we obeying? If we are, then we will have Nathanael’s reward as found in verse 31. What a glorious thing to see Christ in heaven! Let us follow Him! Sing or read Psalter 33.