It’s the most wonderful time of the year. No doubt. Who doesn’t love Christmas?
But let’s be honest, preachers. . . how we do we say what’s already been said (many times, many ways . . . see what I did there?) and what everyone already knows in a compelling way?
It’s hard. If you have pastored at a church for more than a couple of years, thinking of ways to say the “old, old story” in a captivating way can be difficult.
So, let’s share some ideas with each other shall we? Below are three years’ worth of Advent series, starting with the most recent – so recent it hasn’t been preached yet! These series were put together by a preaching team of campus pastors from Brentwood Baptist Church.
Use them to give yourself some ideas.
Use them to prompt some thinking and prime the pump.
Reply below with some ideas of your own. . . after all, it’s Christmas.
Enter the Light – An Advent Series on Missions and Evangelism
During a time of year when it’s easy to think of ourselves first, we reflect on the one who came to bring light to our dark world and our role in sharing that light.
Dec 3 | Rise and Shine | Isaiah 60:1-3
As a result of God’s redeeming work through the Messiah, the light of life would fall on Israel. God’s people would then turn to shine forth as a spiritual light to all the nations. We are to do likewise, reflect the light of God’s Messiah to the nations so that we are instrumental in removing the spiritual darkness that covers our world.
Dec 10 |The Light of Redemption | Isaiah 9:2-7
The area of Galilee, particularly the tribes of Zebulun & Nephtali, suffered some of the worst punishment and offense during the Assyrian occupation of Israel. God’s promise, through the prophet Isaiah, was that these people – crushed in spirit & tempted to give into hopelessness – would be the first to experience the light & hope of the Messiah. This prophecy was fulfilled in Matthew 2:12-16.
Dec 17 | The Light of Praise | Luke 1:78-79
God’s servant Zechariah gave an exhortation of praise in response to God’s provision of a son, John the Baptist. Zechariah’s praise sprang forth from the reality that God was fulfilling His promise to redeem His people. This is a declaration of praise for God’s people, that the time of the Messiah had come.
Dec 24 | The Light of Hope | John 1:4-9| CHRISTMAS EVE
God’s first creative act in Genesis chapter 1 was to produce light. The very nature of light brings forth life. The light of God, manifest through the arrival of the Christ-child, brings salvation into the darkened hearts of sinners.
No Room: An Advent Series
Like an overloaded outlet, our lives are maxed out so that there is “no room” for Christ. We need Jesus to come and set us free.
Buried Alive | Luke 12:13-21
Most of our lives are so crowded that we really don’t know where we would put Jesus if He came to us. Where did all of this stuff come from? Why is it here? Why do we keep it…are we willing to let it go so we can make room for what eternally matters?
Make Room| Matthew 9:9-13; 19:16-22
Comparing the call of Matthew and the rich young ruler. Matthew left it all. The RYR held onto it all…and lost everything.
Knowing the Time | Psalm 90:12
When we want to know the time, we look at our watches. God looks at eternity. The calling is to be able to see life, time and meaning as God does.
Despicable Me | Matthew 2
Why is it we never see ourselves as Herod in this story?
Are You the One | Matthew 11:1-6
Lots of Messiahs are promised and present. How do you know Jesus is the One?
Sticky Peace | John 14:27; John 15:33
Ask anyone and they’ll tell you all they want is a little peace of mind…but the world can’t give it. It only makes our lives more complicated. What is this peace Jesus gives? How is it different?
Light for The Way | John 1:9 | CHRISTMAS DAY
Jesus gives us the light we need for the path we’re walking.
When it All Began
This year the focus is on three Old Testament prophecies about the Messiah and the anticipation that comes with hoping and praying for a long awaited Gift. The series culminates on the Sunday before Christmas, with John’s account of the fulfillment of these promises through the birth of our Savior. Rather than choosing multiple verses or large passages for each sermon, I felt led to keep things very simple and straightforward during Advent. Our people are tired, overwhelmed, and unfortunately they’ll be dealing with the tension of consumerism, so each week I wanted to stay focused on simple truths of Christ’s arrival and what that means for us.
“Predicted” – 2 Samuel 7:12-13
David was God’s chosen earthly king. He was promised that God would use one of his descendants to establish an eternal kingdom, of which there would be no end. The birth of Jesus is the fulfillment of that promise, and signals the beginning of that kingdom.
“Promised” – Isaiah 7:14
The name of the long-awaited promised Savior is Immanuel, which means “God is with us.” Even the name of the Savior points toward the real meaning of Christmas: God has come to establish a relationship with us.
“Proclaimed” – Isaiah 9:6
The prophet Isaiah gives a second prediction of the coming Messiah, declaring four names that reflect the Savior’s divinity and humanity. Each of these names point toward the hope (wisdom, rest, strength, etc.) that our tired, stressed, overwhelmed souls find in Jesus’ arrival.
“Prophesied” – Micah 5:2
Bethlehem was an insignificant town, so Micah’s prophecy about this city is a declaration that God was going to send a different type of King. Jesus’ arrival reminds us that God gives significance to the seemingly insignificant.