It's that time of year that you are either excited, or maybe a bit disappointed. Some of us are excited because, well, there are sales, there's shopping, there are carols, there are presents, there's food. A lot to be excited about.
Some of us might be disinterested or disappointed because, once again we hear the same old story. Same old story about the prediction of Jesus being born. We've heard it before, thank you very much. And yet, those of you who are excited about this time of year may be able to weed through the excitement of sales, and shopping, and carols, and presents, and food, and think “This is a time for me where I really am glad to be able to think about who Jesus Christ is, what he's done for me, what he's done in this world; it’s a good thing.”
But others of us might be inwardly thinking that this whole story about Jesus, once again, is to be greeted with one big yawn. “Not this Jesus thing again.” It's like the story of the preacher who’s greeting folks after the end of the service on Christmas Eve. This one man slithers up to him and says, “You know, preacher, every time I come to hear you preach you talk about the birth of Jesus. I wish you'd find something else to talk about.” Of course, the man doesn't say that that's the only time that he comes to worship is on Christmas Eve. People in pastoral ministry sometimes call folks like that part of the C and E crowd. The Christmas, “C” and the “E,” Easter crowd. But when we hear passages that are a bit familiar, sometimes these passages, create excitement for some of us. I'm anticipating again to rehearse in my mind the truths of ...
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Scott M. Gibson is the Professor of Preaching and holder of the David E. Garland Chair of Preaching at Baylor University/Truett Seminary in Waco, Texas. He also served as the Haddon W. Robinson Professor of Preaching and Ministry at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts, where he was on faculty for twenty-seven years.