Sermon Transcript – Christ Didn’t Forget the Misfits

1 Year Lectionary – Christmas Eve – Friday, December 24, 2021 | Pr. Chris Rosebrough

Welcome to the Teaching Ministry of Kongsvinger Lutheran Church. Kongsvinger is a beacon for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and is located on the plains of Northwestern Minnesota.
We proclaim Christ and Him crucified for our sins and salvation by grace through faith alone, and now, here’s a message from Pastor Chris Rosebrough:
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0:27In the name of Jesus
0:32so i learned something new this week i
0:34was shocked when i heard it i in fact i
0:36didn’t even know what to think of it
0:38it’s horrible when you consider the
0:40implications of what it is that i’d
0:43any of you seen the rankin bass
0:45claymation special rudolph the red-nosed
0:48reindeer i grew up on it now a little
0:50bit of a no it first aired in december
0:54of 1964.
0:56so i wasn’t around when it first aired
0:58just so you know okay okay but
1:01but dwayne cleven was i see
1:06but all of that being said the year that
1:08it first aired
1:09there was something
1:13get this
1:15at the end of the very first version of
1:18rudolph the red-nosed reindeer
1:21toys that were on the isle of misfit
1:23toys they were never rescued rudolph
1:26never came back santa never came to get
1:34and josh has lost it it’s horrible if
1:37you think about it because you have
1:39rudolph promising he would come back but
1:41he never did and what ended up happening
1:44as a result of this oversight i don’t
1:47know what you call it
1:49children from around the country and
1:50around the world who had seen this
1:52special wrote letters
1:55saying that it was terrible what
1:56happened to the toys on the isle of
2:00misfit toys did why didn’t santa go and
2:03get them and rankin and bass you know
2:06being put under this basically deluge of
2:10letters calling for some kind of justice
2:12for the isle of misfit toys they
2:15before 1965’s airing of that
2:20added the ending that we’re all familiar
2:22with the one that i’ve seen since i was
2:24a kid
2:25but i’d like you to think of it this way
2:29tonight is Christmas eve
2:31and according to the biblical way in
2:33which days work today is already
2:36Christmas it’s already happened when the
2:38sun set Christmas began
2:41and you’ll note that when we read in the
2:43book of genesis the days of creation
2:46there was evening
2:47and there was morning the first day
2:49there was evening and there was morning
2:50the second day our days begin in
2:54and so it’s kind of appropriate it’s
2:56almost like god knew what he was doing
2:59because i think he does you know we
3:01begin our lives in the darkness of sin
3:04we begin our lives under the dominion of
3:06darkness we demon
3:08begin our lives in darkness itself
3:11under the rule of satan
3:14following the passions of the world and
3:16the desires that run contrary to the
3:19word of god
3:20all because of adam and eve’s rebellion
3:24against god in eating of the tree that
3:26they were told not to eat of it
3:28but when god was handing out punishments
3:32curses if you would
3:34aside from the curse that we heard that
3:36you are dust into dusty will return
3:39and by toil and the sweat of your brow
3:41will you eat bread that was one of the
3:44curses and also the conflict between
3:46husband and wives that exists that was
3:48part of the curse
3:50and also
3:51well women experience
3:53pain and childbirth that’s par part of
3:55the curse but there was a curse in
3:58particular that was given but it was
4:00backhanded curse it was a curse with a
4:03and the promise went something along the
4:05lines of that the seed of the woman
4:09a promised seed of a woman by the way
4:11women don’t have seeds they’re they’re
4:14the fertile grounds that seeds are
4:16planted in if you were to think about it
4:18but the seed of the woman god would
4:20raise up who would crush the head of the
4:21serpent break his dominion
4:25there was the very first Christmas
4:27promise given to us
4:30in the darkness
4:31of our sin
4:32is it any wonder then that john in his
4:35gospel he likens Christ’s appearing the
4:38incarnation not only to a new creation
4:41and it is but he also
4:44well talks about it in terms of darkness
4:47and in light
4:48that the light has shone in the darkness
4:50and the darkness has not overcome it and
4:53that Christ the light has come to save
4:56and see that’s the thing
4:58we didn’t have to send letters to god
5:00going help we’re broken we’re stuck on
5:04the island of sinful creatures
5:07and if you think about it as big as our
5:09planet seems to us
5:12in the vastness of space
5:14this tiny little marble that we’re on is
5:17kind of like an island and in the well
5:20when you consider the vastness of the
5:22universe itself
5:24a tiny little speck
5:28but here we all are broken by sin not
5:31just misfits we’re flat-out rebels
5:34not just you know mortally wounded but
5:37dead in trespasses and sins
5:39and at the very very first
5:42of it god promises us one who would
5:46crush the head of the serpent the seed
5:48of the woman
5:49and thousands of years passed before
5:53that promise was fulfilled
5:56you see god didn’t put us down as a post
5:58script it wasn’t like Jesus was going oh
6:01yeah i think we need to do something
6:03about humanity this was the plan all
6:06along and so we hear then in our gospel
6:09text tonight
6:11then in human history
6:14in those days a decree went out from
6:16caesar augustus we know the name of the
6:18roman emperor that Jesus was born
6:22all the world should be registered for
6:24what purpose tax you know taxes we all
6:26know a thing or two about that don’t
6:28worry you kids you’ll understand what
6:29taxes are all about soon enough and once
6:32you start paying you never stop it’s
6:34just a thing that happens year after
6:37year every time you go to the grocery
6:38store but
6:40mary and joseph they had to go down to
6:41bethlehem in order to be registered for
6:43attacks this was the first registration
6:46when quirinius was the governor of syria
6:48all went to be registered each to his
6:50own town and so joseph and mary were
6:52required then by roman law to make the
6:54trip from nazareth
6:56all the way down to bethlehem it would
6:59take a couple of days to get there and
7:01this is the days before cars and they
7:03always picture mary on a donkey you know
7:06you get the Christmas cards right and
7:08the Christmas cards always have those
7:10those wonderful blue gradients of the
7:12sky that had just turned dark with the
7:15big shining star and off in the distance
7:17bethlehem and there’s mary being led by
7:20joseph on a donkey but here’s the issue
7:24to have a donkey means you have money
7:28mary and joseph just don’t
7:31they don’t we’ll we’ll see this in the
7:33in the weeks ahead that when it came
7:36time to present Jesus and to offer the
7:38sacrifice necessary for him as the
7:42child who opened the womb of the virgin
7:46they couldn’t even afford a sheep
7:49they they went with the poverty
7:53so was mary on a donkey
7:56most likely not
7:58in fact she probably walked the whole
8:01way and walking from
8:04nazareth to bethlehem nine months
8:06pregnant just sounds
8:09no fun
8:10at all
8:11is it any wonder then that she went she
8:13goes into labor first thing she gets
8:16so they were the house in the lineage of
8:18david she was betrothed not yet not yet
8:22uh consummated the marriage and while
8:24they were there the time came for her to
8:25give birth and she gave birth to her
8:27firstborn son wrapped him in swaddling
8:29claws laid him in a manger and then we
8:32hear these words because there was no
8:33place for them in the inn
8:35now a little bit of a note here the word
8:38for in you know we translate it in we
8:40think of like the holiday inn
8:42so they went to the local hotel you know
8:45they went to the holiday inn or the
8:46howard johnson of the motel six and
8:49every time they would drive up you know
8:50they said you know no vacancy
8:53what’s interesting is
8:55is that
8:56the greek word here is catalooma
9:00and it could be translated as an upper
9:03room and let me explain what this means
9:05is that we you know we picture poor mary
9:07and joseph you know looking for a place
9:09to stay but chances are that they had
9:12relatives cousins or maybe second
9:15cousins living
9:17in bethlehem i mean family units were a
9:19lot tighter back then but i mean i would
9:22note out here some of you kids how close
9:24are you with your cousins do you know
9:26your cousins you know uncle so and so
9:28aunt so and so i don’t know which uncles
9:31or aunts you know but the idea here is
9:33is that you have extended family but
9:35here’s the thing
9:37bethlehem was
9:40why because everyone was required there
9:42to register for their taxes and so back
9:45in the day in bethlehem the way it would
9:47work you’d have these like kind of three
9:49storied houses all right on the bottom
9:53story it was a dirt floor
9:55and guess what they kept on the bottom
9:59your cattle they’d keep cows or goats or
10:02sheep and the reason being is actually
10:04quite simple
10:05because on the bottom level you keep the
10:07cows down on the bottom heat rises
10:10so do smells but that’s a different
10:12thing altogether all right then you have
10:14like a main floor the main floor on the
10:17main floor you would have your kitchen
10:18facility and main rooms for mom dad and
10:21for the kids but then there was this
10:23third room on the top called a catalooma
10:26all right and the ketaluma was for the
10:28visiting guests so somebody comes in
10:31from out of town maybe that’s where you
10:33store some things up there but they you
10:36clear that all out and your guests stay
10:38in their guest room that’s how this all
10:40worked but all the catalumas
10:42were packed which basically means that
10:45mary and joseph were down on the bottom
10:48where the animals were
10:52i always think back to when i was a kid
10:54when i didn’t clean my room properly
10:56which was often
10:59my mom had this thing she would say
11:02were you born in a barn
11:07i often wondered
11:08how bad my beating would have been had i
11:10said yes
11:12know i was always tempted to lip off
11:15backwards but but here’s the thing
11:18Christ in a sense was
11:21and consider the contrast
11:24Jesus is king of kings he’s lord of
11:27he is the one in genesis
11:29who said let there be light and there
11:31was light
11:33he was there with the father and the
11:34holy spirit he saw the holy spirit
11:38brooding over the
11:40waters of the deep
11:43beginning the process of taking all of
11:45this chaos and bringing order to it he
11:48owns the cattle on a thousand hills the
11:50scripture says
11:52everything was made
11:54by him there’s not anything made
11:57that wasn’t made by him yet he came to
11:59his own and his own
12:01did not know him
12:05he wasn’t born
12:08in regal robes there was no
12:13proclaimer out there saying the king has
12:16given birth to a son the son of david
12:19who will reign over the throne on the
12:21throne of david his father in israel not
12:23nothing like that nothing
12:25king of kings lord of lords god of god
12:28light of light very god a very god
12:31and what do they do
12:33they wrap them in swaddling cloths and
12:36put them in a animal feeding trough
12:40for a bed
12:49loves you
12:51and he was coming to save you
12:54you weren’t an afterthought
12:58you didn’t have to have kids right to
13:00god saying how long oh lord are you
13:02going to do anything to
13:04fix the problem that we have
13:09was now in the world
13:11and one of the famous hymns that we sing
13:13with child is this
13:15and the second stanza singing about the
13:18baby Jesus
13:19it says that nails and spears will
13:22pierce him through the cross be born for
13:24me for you
13:25hail hail the word made flesh the babe
13:28the son of mary Christ was here to come
13:30and bleed and die
13:33and so here we see Jesus resting we see
13:35Jesus sleeping here we see Jesus
13:39doing what babies do
13:41but all of this is so that he can lay
13:43down his life so that you and i can live
13:46so that you and i can be forgiven so
13:48that you and i can be reconciled to god
13:50so that our sin can be atoned for and
13:53the darkness that we have brought into
13:55the world
13:57would give way to the light of Christ
14:00and the world to come
14:03and it’s always it’s always in this
14:05context that you hear then about these
14:08shepherds now little historical note
14:11some some people have noted and they are
14:13absolutely correct that the shepherds of
14:15bethlehem were generally tasked with
14:18being the ones to care for the sheep who
14:21would be sacrificed as part of the
14:23requirements of the mosaic covenant
14:26and so it’s in that regard then you kind
14:28of consider that it almost seems like an
14:30appropriate group of people to
14:33to well announce the good news to
14:36but when god shows up among us we don’t
14:39even know it
14:40and so the angels had to step in and let
14:43us know what was going on
14:45so in the same region there were
14:46shepherds out in the field keeping their
14:47watch over their flock by night
14:50and an angel of the lord appeared to
14:51them we don’t know his name it’s not
14:52given to us
14:54and the glory of the lord shone around
14:56them and they were filled with great
15:01and isn’t that what we all because of
15:02our sin
15:04feel regarding god
15:06anxiety fear
15:08fear of judgment fear of being cast into
15:10hell fear
15:12of getting what we deserve
15:14but that’s not what Christ was here
15:17and so they were filled with great fear
15:19and they hear these comforting words the
15:22angels said to them fear not
15:24fear not for behold
15:26i bring you good news of great joy that
15:28will be for all people for unto you was
15:30born this day in the city of david a
15:32savior who is Christ the lord
15:35and this proclamation you’ll note the
15:36angel says it’s for all people it’s for
15:38you it’s for me and today we got to hear
15:41the kids of emmanuel and the kids of
15:44join their voices with the angels
15:47and proclaiming to us that unto us is
15:50born a savior which is exactly what we
15:54and this will be the sign for you you’ll
15:56find a baby wrapped in swaddling claws
15:58lying in a manger and suddenly there was
16:01with the angel a multitude of the
16:02heavenly hosts praising god and saying
16:04glory to god in the highest and on earth
16:06peace among those with whom he is well
16:10so when the angels then went away from
16:12them into heaven the shepherds said to
16:14one another let us go over to bethlehem
16:16and see this thing that has happened
16:18which the lord has made known to us and
16:20if god hadn’t made it known to us we
16:22would have never known at all
16:24that’s how dark the darkness is of our
16:29so let’s go to bethlehem a little bit of
16:31a note here also beth
16:33lechem you have to say it like that by
16:35the way if you’re going to do it right
16:40all right
16:41is bread
16:44house think about this for a second
16:47all the way back
16:49in genesis
16:50we hear god saying to adam
16:54that by the sweat of your brow you will
16:58and from the sweat and toil you will eat
17:04isn’t isn’t it appropriate then that
17:06Christ is born
17:08in bethlehem
17:10the house
17:11of bread
17:12because he not only lays down his life
17:16for us
17:17he says in the gospel of john that he is
17:20the bread of life and that whoever feeds
17:22on him will never die
17:25think about it a reference to communion
17:28and there’s a veiled reference to it
17:30here in Jesus’s place of birth the place
17:33that he chose to be born so let’s go
17:35over to bethlehem and see this thing
17:37that has happened which the lord has
17:39made known to us so they went with haste
17:41and they found mary and joseph and the
17:43baby lying in a manger just as they were
17:45told and they when they saw it they made
17:47known the saying that had been told to
17:49them concerning this child and all who
17:51heard it wondered and what the shepherds
17:53told them that mary treasured up all
17:55these things pondering them in her heart
17:57and the shepherds then returned
17:59glorifying and praising god for all that
18:01they had heard and seen as it has been
18:04told to them and brothers and sisters
18:06tonight you have been told again the
18:08story today is not a day where we
18:10celebrate in the same way we celebrate
18:12birthdays this isn’t we’re not this is a
18:14big blowout celebration of the birthday
18:16of Christ instead Christmas is instead
18:20the celebration the glorifying of god of
18:23the birth of our savior regardless of
18:27the day on which it fell
18:30today is the day
18:31now that the sun is set because it is
18:33already Christmas by bible
18:36keeping of days
18:37today is the day that we remember that
18:40god never forgot us
18:42that we were not an afterthought
18:44Christ says that god did not send his
18:46son into the world to condemn the world
18:48but the world might be saved through him
18:50god so loved the world that he gave his
18:53only begotten son and he shows up as a
18:58whoever believes in him
19:00should not perish but have eternal life
19:04so let us join our voices now
19:07with the shepherds
19:09and glorify god
19:11and praise god for all that we have
19:13heard today although we have not seen it
19:16with our eyes we will see him with our
19:18eyes when he returns in glory and
19:20although we have not heard his voice we
19:22have heard the voice that he has given
19:25us to hear these words and these words
19:27come with his authority and they are
19:29living and active they give us hope
19:32in the midst of a world that seems
19:35and this is truly light in the world
19:37that is filled with darkness and getting
19:41and so note this brothers and sisters
19:44unto you is born
19:47a savior
19:48exactly what we need
19:50we are saved
19:52we are rescued in the name of Jesus
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