Sermon: The Birth Announcement

The Birth Announcement
Luke 2:1-20
December 22, 2019

Members of staff set up an official notice on an easel at the gates of Buckingham Palace in London on May 6, 2019 announcing the birth of a son to Britain’s Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / AFP/Getty Images)

Earlier this year, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan Markle had a baby.  While babies are born every second of every day, this birth captured the attention of royal followers around the world.  Like many other parents, the birth was first announced by Harry and Meghan on social media.  And then Buckingham Palace got involved with its official announcement.  A framed declaration was brought out of the Privy Purse Door of Buckingham Palace, carried across the forecourt by two attendants, and placed on an ornate golden easel, where it remained for 24 hours to proclaim the child’s birth:

The Queen and Royal Family are delighted at the news the Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Sussex was safely delivered of a son at 0526 am today.  Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well.

You might notice that the baby’s name was missing from the announcement.  His name was revealed three days later, after the Queen was first informed of the choice.  The child’s name is Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, though the baby is missing an official Royal title.  He could have become Earl of Dumbarton or Lord Archie Mountbatten-Windsor, but instead he will simply be Master Archie Mountbatten-Windsor.  There certainly was more official fuss over the birth the Royal Archie than when the rest of us have children.  Indeed, there was more fuss over him than the birth of the Royal, Jesus Christ.

While the life of Christ is the most remarkable story in the history of the world — surpassing creation, the coming wrath of God, the worldwide flood of Noah’s day, or any miracle like the feeding of the 5000 or the raising of Lazarus from the dead — His arrival is told in remarkable simplicity.  Like the death and resurrection of Christ which are spoken of in such simplicity (“Christ was crucified”…“He is not here…”), so the Advent of God into time and space, the immortal taking on mortality, is told with great simplicity and understatement.  “Most regal figures are born with great ceremony and celebration. But Jesus’ birth is as average as it comes.” [Bock, 83.] Don’t miss the wonder of what takes place in this account by the ordinariness of the language.  This is an extraordinary story — the most extraordinary story of history.

Luke gives us the simple account:

The “average” birth of Christ is in contrast to the exalted position of Christ.

In Luke’s account, we see the progression of the revelation of Christ in three stages (#3 will be on 12/24):

  1. The Incident: a Child is Born (vv. 1-7)
  2. The Interpretation: the Child is the Lord of Glory  (vv. 8-14)
  3. The Imperatives: Worship and Declare the Child (vv. 15-20)

Download the rest of this sermon on Luke 2:1-20.

The audio will be posted on the GBC website by tomorrow.

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