The Significance of the Manger

Text: Luke 2:7, 12 16

“Were you born in a barn?” use to be a common colloquialism to describe our kids’ lack of discrimination between what’s inside the house and what’s outside the house.  That saying came from the birth of Jesus Christ in whose case it was true that He was born in a barn.

The word manger only shows up three times in the Bible; all three times are in the verses we will preach from in Luke chapter 2.

It’s significant why Jesus was there

  • No room in the inn.  The inn would be like a house with a couple extra rooms.
  • I understand Jesus wasn’t born on December 25, but I enjoy the season.  I like the Christmas music, the lights, the decorations, the days off work, the presents, the get togethers.  But some things about Christmas which is suppose to be a birthday for Jesus Christ.
  • Christmas is the only birthday celebration I know of where everyone else gets gifts except the one with the birthday.  We may say He’s the reason for the season, but how many of you have a gift to give the Lord Jesus Christ?
  • Christmas is the only birthday I know of where sometimes the birthday boy is not allowed to attend.  Instead the heroes are Santa, Rudolph, and Frosty.
  • I’ve heard multiple sermons about where there is no room for Jesus and you probably have too.
    • No room in culture.
    • No room in education.
    • No room in politics.
    • No room in the public.
  • All that is true.  We don’t have any misconceptions about the world and there really is little reason for me to tell you the world has no room for Jesus.
  • Let’s get personal.  Haven’t you found in your life fitting Jesus in is like an overbooked innkeeper who would have to say no to other guests in order to make room.
  • It’s significant why Jesus was in the manger.
    • No room because of ignorance
    • No room because of indifference
    • No room because of inconvenience

It’s significant what the manger represents

  • The angel said this would be a sign to the shepherds that they’d find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.  The sign to the shepherds was unmistakeable.
  • The manger was where the flock was fed.
    • Here is Jesus Christ, the bread of life, to feed the flock of God.
    • John 6:35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
  • The manger was a filthy vessel.
    • Make no mistake, the manger is a feed trough.  It was dirty.  It smelled like animals.
    • Manger, like you and me are dirty.
    • Manger, like you and me are unworthy of divine royalty.
    • Manger, like you and me are places God chose to put Himself.
    • Manger, like you and me have nothing to do with glory other than the one that is in it.  This is what made the manger special – who was in it.  Ordinary stable furniture turned to something extraordinary.

It’s significant who was in the manger

  • the babe…That baby is God.  Your calendar would forever be changed with this event.
  • In that manger was the humanity of God
    • 1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh… God in diapers, what a thought!?  God as a child learning, growing, asking questions, hitting his thumb with a hammer, getting splinters, scraping his knee.  Luke 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.  Hebrews 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. (3 words that changed everything)
    • John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
    • Righteousness, wisdom, sanctification, and redemption all have a body – 1 Corinthians 1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
    • Eternal life has a form – 1 John 1:1-3 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
    • Truth is a man – John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
  • In that manger was the humility of glory
    • Philippians 2:5-11 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
    • Humility has no dignity.  God lowered himself to make us right with Him, but we won’t lower ourselves to make ourselves right with Him.  Maybe tonight you’re too dignified to get right with God.  There too much to lose in your mind.  Don’t look for the glory if you won’t let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.