Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord
commanded him and took to him his wife (Matthew 1:24)
Angels. They make Christmas supernatural. And there are lots of them. From start, to finish. Without the angels, Christmas wouldn’t have happened the way it did and maybe not have happened at all. This is the one event in the bible where angels appear again and again. The one event filled with angels more than any other! Did you miss that?
Without angels, no Mary. She wouldn’t have known she was the chosen one (Luke 1:28). Without angelic revelation and her surrender to God’s will, no conception would have taken place in Mary’s womb. Maybe another womb, but not Mary’s. Joseph would never have taken Mary as his wife when he discovered her pregnancy. He would have quietly broken off the engagement, and left her! An angel changed his mind (Matthew 1:20). The shepherds in the fields of Bethlehem would never have guessed a Saviour was born that night without the angel’s announcement (Luke 1:9-12). There wouldn’t have been a celestial spectacular with a host of angels singing “Glory to God in the Highest and on earth peace, goodwill towards men!”. Herod would almost certainly have killed the baby Jesus in Bethlehem had an angel not warned Joseph to flee. They would have spent untold years in Egypt had an angel not told them to return to Israel (Matthew 2:13,19).
What did I tell you? Angels made Christmas possible! They are spiritual agents who do God’s bidding. Some have names like Gabriel (Luke 1:19,26). Others are unnamed. They reveal God’s hidden purpose. They bring God’s tidings! They instruct and warn about impending calamities! They protect against harm. Their appearance is intimidating. For they always said: “Do not fear!” (Luke 1:13,30,2:10, Matthew 1:20). Be very aware of angels this Christmas. They not only make Christmas real. Miracles may also happen for you!
天使。是他们让圣诞变得不平凡并超于自然的, 而这世上亦存在着很多的天使。如果没有天使的出现, 我们所熟悉的圣诞就不会如圣经记录般发生, 甚至有可能完全不会发生。在圣经里, 唯有这事件记载了天使屡次出现的情景。与其他事件相比, 这事件亦充满着最多的天使！您是否错过了呢？
如果没有天使的出现, 那就不会有玛利亚。她不会晓得她是被捡选的那一位 (路加福音1:28)。如果没有天使的启示和玛利亚对上帝旨意的顺服, 那受孕就不可能发生在玛利亚腹中。有可能是发生在她人的腹中, 但不是玛利亚。而约瑟在得知玛利亚怀孕的消息后也肯定不会娶她为妻。反之, 他会悄悄地终止婚约然后离开她！但一位天使他改变了主意 (马太福音1:20)。如果没有天使的报喜, 在伯利恒的牧羊人并不会知道救主就在当夜降生了(路加福音1:9-12)。天空中也不会出现众多惊人壮丽的天使，高唱说 “在至高之处荣耀归与神！在地上平安归与他所喜悦的人！”。如果不是天使警告约瑟逃离, 在伯利恒里的小小婴孩耶稣, 肯定被希律王杀害。也因着天使向约瑟的显现, 告诉他们是时候回去以色列; 要不然, 他们不晓得得在埃及呆多少年 (马太福音2:13, 19)。
我没说错吧？是天使成就了圣诞！他们是属灵的使者, 遵从上帝所吩咐的行事。众天使当中, 有些是拥有名字的, 如加百列 (路加福音1:19, 26)；有些则没有被没命名。但他们却彰显上帝隐藏的旨意。他们带来上帝的好消息！他们指示并警告即将发生的灾难！他们给予保护并免去伤害。然而，他们的显现会让人感到害怕, 这也是为什么他们会常说：“不要惧怕！” (路加福音1:13,30, 2:10; 马太福音1:20)。在来临的圣诞, 请务必多留意天使的出没。因为他们不但让圣诞发生，他们更要让神迹发生在您身上！
Philip Lyn 医生牧师