As we prepare to celebrate the wonder of the Christmas story and the coming of our Savior, I would like to draw your attention to an important facet of that story. Something that should not be overlooked…
The role of the Holy Spirit in the story of Christmas.
Without the Spirit’s active ministry, there would be no virgin birth, no wise men, no Bethlehem manger, no shepherds abiding in the field, and no angel choirs filling the night sky.
And we would still be lost in our sins.
Praise God that’s not what happened! The Holy Spirit did move in power, and He is still moving powerfully today.
I want to give you two incredible aspects of the Holy Spirit’s ministry that made the Christmas story possible.
First: The Holy Spirit guided the events to orchestrate Christ’s birth.
When the wise men from the East first arrived in Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up. Herod did not like the chatter around town about a new King. He hated any threat to his power and planned to kill the Child at first chance.
Herod met with the wise men and said, “Look, when you find out where this new King is, come back and tell me so I can go worship Him also.” Of course, he had no intention of worshipping Jesus. He wanted to kill Jesus.
The wise men proceeded on to Bethlehem. They saw the child Jesus and gave Him gifts. The Scripture then says this in Matthew 2:12,
Then being divinely warned in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed for their own country another way.
The very next thing that happens in the narrative is God divinely warns Joseph in dreams on three separate occasions. First, he’s directed to flee with his family into Egypt because Herod seeks to kill Jesus.
Next, God directs Joseph in another dream by the Holy Spirit to return to Israel because those that sought the young Child’s life are dead. Then in Matthew 2:22 it says of Joseph,
But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning over Judea, instead of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Being warned by God in a dream, he turned aside into the region of Galilee.
Yet another dream from the Holy Spirit to orchestrate events and achieve God’s rescue plan to save the world—and those are just the ones I’ve mentioned. The guidance of the Holy Spirit made the Christmas story possible.
Second: The Holy Spirit empowered the miraculous events of Christmas.
In Luke 1:31–33, the angel Gabriel delivers God’s message to Mary. He says,
“And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
Then in verse 34 Mary says to the angel, “How can this be since I do not know a man.” Mary was a virgin. She wanted to know how something like that could possibly happen!
Look at the angel’s answer in verse 35,
“And the angel answered and said to her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.’” (Emphasis mine.)
The Holy Spirit came upon Mary in power. The word power is the Greek word dunamis—it literally means miracle-working power.
The angel goes on to say in verse 37, “for with God, nothing will be impossible.” The Amplified Bible Classic edition says, “no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.”
If God says it, the Holy Spirit can bring it to pass. No matter how impossible it may seem. When God’s Word and the presence of the Holy Spirit come together, miraculous things happen.
Friend, the Holy Spirit’s guidance and empowerment were prominent in the story of Jesus’ birth, and His ministry remains prominent in our lives today!
One area we’ve sensed the Holy Spirit’s prompting is the need for translation of Answers broadcasts and resources into the French language, which is one of the most spoken languages in the world. About 300 million people speak French. These translations would reach so many with the power of the gospel to change their lives for eternity. We are trusting the Holy Spirit to do amazing things as we do our part to get God’s Word to millions of precious French speaking people.
And the help of faithful friends like you is making this a reality.
Today I’m asking you to pray with me for even more people around the world to experience the Christ of Christmas through our Answers with Bayless Conley broadcast ministry.
Your support will not only help translate the good news into more languages like French, it will also help strengthen every aspect of our mission together to reach a dying world with our living Savior.
In this message, I examine the Scriptures to show you how the Holy Spirit guided and empowered people throughout the Christmas narrative and in the early Church—and how that powerful work continues in you and me today.
I pray you’re encouraged as you see how the Holy Spirit wants to move in your life to guide and empower you for God’s purposes.
Our mission to take the living gospel to a lost world is so important. Through your faithful support, we are partnering together and trusting the Holy Spirit to change people’s lives through the gospel all over the world.
So be sure to request your copy of “How the Holy Spirit Guides and Empowers You” when you give today.
Thank you for helping to reach more people for God’s Kingdom!