We are here tonight to celebrate Christmas – or as it was once called – “Christ-Mass”, the worship of the ChristChild. Christmas really had its beginnings long before our Savior was born. The very Son of God existed from all eternity. In fact, John 1 proclaims that all things were made by Him…
Listen to the service:
Prophesied In The Old Testament
Processional Congregation Hymn: “Come Hither, Ye Children”
♫ 1. Come hither, ye children, O come one and all,
To Bethlehem haste, to the manger so small;
God’s Son for a gift has been sent you this night
To be your Redeemer, your joy and delight.
- He’s born in a stable for you and for me,
Draw near by the bright gleaming starlight to see,
In swaddling clothes lying, so meek and so mild,
And purer than angels—the heavenly Child.
- See Mary and Joseph with love-beaming eyes
Are gazing upon the rude bed where He lies;
The shepherds are kneeling, with hearts full of love,
While angels sing loud hallelujahs above.
- Kneel down and adore Him with shepherds today,
Lift up little hands now and praise Him as they;
Rejoice that a Savior from sin you can boast,
And join in the song of the heavenly host.
Recitation By Grades 5-6
(Joel Kuehne, Levi Seeley & Ryan Lang) We are here tonight to celebrate Christmas – or as it was once called – “Christ-Mass”, the worship of the ChristChild. Christmas really had its beginnings long before our Savior was born. The very Son of God existed from all eternity. In fact, John 1 proclaims that all things were made by Him.
(Claire Schierenbeck, Quinn and Averie Williams) The Son of God was given many names in the Old Testament. He sometimes revealed Himself as “The Angel of the Lord.” To Adam and Eve He was the promised “Seed” or descendant of the woman Who would destroy the devil; As Jehovah, the Lord, the Covenant God, He fulfilled the salvation promise.
(Dylan Krueger, Matt Radermacher) In the Psalms He is called the Redeemer, the Lord our Righteousness, our Shepherd and the King of glory. All these Old Testament passages that predict His coming and His saving work are called Messianic prophecies. But one special name is most associated with the long-promised Savior and that is the name Messiah.
(Olivia Thurow, Lenyn Pfau) Messiah means The “Anointed One”, the One God Chose to be the world’s Sin-Deliverer. Isaiah calls Him God’s Anointed Servant Who would serve God and all of us by coming to earth on a mission of salvation. Messiah is the same Old Testament name as the New Testament name Christ.
(Emma Moen, Arianna Doyle) When Andrew found Jesus, the first thing he told his brother, Simon Peter, was: “We have found the Messiah, that is the Christ.” Thank God, we too have found the Messiah, the Christ. The Baby Jesus, Whose birth we celebrate, is our God & Lord. He came to live and die and rise to bring us life and salvation.
♫ 1 Hark! The herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King;
Peace on earth and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled!”
Joyful, all ye nations, rise, Join the triumph of the skies;
With the angelic host proclaim “Christ is born in Bethlehem!”
Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”
3 Hail, the heav’n-born Prince of Peace! Hail, the Sun of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings, Ris’n with healing in His wings.
Mild He lays His glory by, Born that man no more may die,
Born to raise the sons of earth, Born to give them second birth.
Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”
Recitation By Grades 3-4
God gave His Son some precious names, All give to Him salvation fame.
Names that tell salvation story – Names that give to God all glory.
Redeemer, Savior, God’s own Son, Messiah, Christ – Anointed One;
Immanuel, Prince of Peace, our Lord, Christmas Child, by all adored.
Before His manger – knees we bow, In faith and love to worship now;
Before His throne – all knees bow down, One day receive His victory crown.
Song By Grades 3-8 – “One King”
(written by Lowell Alexander; Jeff Borders; Gayla Borders)
Recitation by Pre-School – Grade 2
Let us all with happy voice Praise the God of heaven,
Who to make our hearts rejoice His own Son has given.
To this vale of tears He comes, Here to serve in sadness,
That with Him in heaven’s fair home We may live in gladness.
We are rich for He was poor, Is not this a wonder?
Therefore praise God evermore Here on earth and yonder.
+ Song By Little Ones – “Away In A Manger”
(V 1 & 3 Traditional Melody; V 2 – Alternate)
- Away in a manger, no crib for his bed,
The little Lord Jesus lay down His sweet head,
The stars in the bright sky looked down where He lay,
The little Lord Jesus asleep on the hay.
- The cattle are lowing, the poor baby wakes,
But little Lord Jesus, no crying he makes.
I love Thee, Lord Jesus, look down from the sky,
And stay by my cradle till morning is nigh.
- Be near me, Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay
Close by me forever and love me, I pray.
Bless all the dear children in Thy tender care,
And take us to heaven to live with Thee there.
+ (Linsey Sydow) In 1741 a 56 year old English Christian composer named George Frederick Handel received a letter from a friend. To his amazement, it contained a number of important Bible passages about the Messiah. So moved was he that he decided to set these important Scripture sections to music. The result is a gift of God.
+ (Sam Radermacher) Within 24 days Handel had completed the entire oratorio in 3 sections – the birth, redemption and resurrection of the Messiah. It was first performed in Dublin, Ireland and later conducted by Handel himself many times. Shortly before his death, Handel expressed his faith and desire to join his Savior in heaven.
+ (Jillian Gamble) Over the years the Messiah has become one of the most widely-performed and beloved pieces in the world. The faith of countless Christians has been uplifted by these precious Scriptures set to such beautiful, powerful and moving music – which wonderfully fits the message of God’s love in Christ. Music is one of God’s wonderful gifts to His children.
+ (Ravyn Miles) Music provides a wonderful outlet for the deepest expressions of our faith. The link between music, and Christian worship is found in the many psalms of praise in the Old Testament. Our Lord says: “Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and encourage one another with all wisdom and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.”
+ (Maya Seeley) Handel’s Messiah tells the story of our salvation from Jesus’ conception and birth through His suffering, death and resurrection and beyond. It is filled with prophecies of the Messiah from the Book of Isaiah. Isaiah has been called the Old Testament evangelist because he so often foretells the work of our Christmas, Good Friday and Easter Savior.”
+ (Jadyn Karow) Our choir will now sing Handel’s musical setting of Isaiah 9:6-7:“For unto us a child is born; Unto us a Son is given. And the government shall be upon His shoulders. And His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.”
+ (Brynn Schierenbeck) Yes, this newborn child, this Son of Mary is the mighty God upon Whom the eternal kingdom destiny of every soul rests. All of His wonderful counsel and blessed peace comes to us in the Christmas Gospel. And most important, this little Child has been given to us this Christmas. Yes, “Unto us a Child us born, Unto us a Son is given.”
Song by Choir – “For Unto Us A Child Is Born” (Messiah, Handel)
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulder; and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9: 6)
The Christmas Eve Offering
All Children Recite Luke 2: 1-7:
“And it came to pass in those days that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria. And all went to be taxed, everyone into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, (Because he was of the house and lineage of David) to be taxed with Mary, his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her first-born Son and wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”
All Children Sing – “A Celebration Medley”
The first Noel the angel did say Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay. In fields where they lay keeping their sheep On a cold winter’s night that was so deep. Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel, Born is the King of Israel.
Go tell it on the mountain, Over the hills and everywhere,
Go tell it on the mountain that Jesus Christ is born.
While shepherds kept their watching O’er silent flocks by night,
Behold throughout the heavens There shone a holy light.
Joy to the world, the Lord is come! Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room And heaven and nature sing and heaven and nature sing and heaven and heaven and nature sing.
Joy to the earth, the Savior reigns! Let men their songs employ,
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains. Repeat the sounding joy, repeat the sounding joy, Repeat, repeat the sounding joy.
And heaven and nature sing, and heaven and nature sing and heaven
And heaven and nature sing. And heaven and heaven and nature sing. Joy!
+ (Nikole Gullerud) Imagine. On that first Christmas night all heaven and earth came together in everything that happened. The Father in love sent His Son down to earth to become one of us; The eternal Son of God came to us in the form of a lowly infant; The Holy Spirit recorded the Story of Christmas for all to hear – and believe. The very angels of God announced the birth and filled the skies with heavenly praise.
+ (Adara Kellogg) Here on earth, Joseph and Mary marveled in faith at the fulfillment of all God’s Messianic promises. A lowly band of believing shepherds were eyewitnesses to true Christmas glory, but also set a wonderful example for all of us as they returned from Christmas “glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen.”
+ (Danielle Gamble) On this holy night we too hear the Christmas angel announcing the Good Tidings of great joy: A Savior has been born for us, bringing forgiveness and peace and the blessed hope of eternal life. How can we ever respond in any other way than that of the shepherds – with hearts and lives filled with praise and thanksgiving? May Christmas hearts join the shepherds and angels in singing: “Glory to God!”
Songs by Choir from Messiah, Handel
- Soprano Recitative — Luke 2:8,9
“There were shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flocks by night. And lo! the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.”
- Soprano Recitative — Luke 2:10,11
And the angel said unto them, Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.
- Soprano Recitative — Luke 2:13
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
- Chorus — “Glory To God” (Luke 2: 14)
“Glory to God in the highest, and peace on earth, good will towards men.”
+ (Alec Gullerud) Truly, God has kept His promises. The Messiah has come – to us and for us. We have so much to celebrate at Christmas. About 100 years after “The Messiah” was written, an old poem of English hymnwriter Isaac Watts was adapted to a familiar melody from Handel’s Messiah.
+ (Nathan Lang) It has now become one of our favorite Christmas carols. It expresses verbally and musically the powerful joy that we Christians feel over Christmas and all that it means to us – both for our lives here on earth and for our future in heaven. Let us join now in singing the final two verses of “Joy To The World”.
♫ 3 No more let sins and sorrows grow Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found, Far as the curse is found.
4 He rules the world with truth and grace And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness And wonders of His love,
And wonders of His love, And wonders of His love.
The Lord’s Prayer and Benediction
♫ 1 Silent night, holy night! All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin mother and child. Holy Infant, so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace, Sleep in heavenly peace.
2 Silent night, holy night! Shepherds quake at the sight;
Glories stream from heaven afar, Heav’nly hosts sing, Alleluia!
Christ, the Savior, is born! Christ, the Savior, is born!
3 Silent night, holy night! Son of God, love’s pure light
Radiant beams from Thy holy face With the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord, at thy birth, Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth.
Silent Prayer And Announcements