Sermon Midnight Mass 2018 – Fr. Michael Cawthon
Midnight Mass 2018
Jhn 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Jhn 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
Jhn 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
Jhn 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
Alleluia – This day the Word is made flesh – for us!
And this Word dwelt – among us!
This Word is full of grace and truth – for us!
This day – God entered into His Creation, not obscurely, but to be seen – for us!
God the Word is fully divine;
God the Word is fully human,
(never losing His Divinity nor changing from what He was.)
This Day, He takes on our flesh.
God, was full of goodness and righteousness,
as we were, and are, empty …
desperately in need of His grace and His truth.
The word becoming flesh (The Incarnation) is a mystery,
The Son from the Father – the second person from the first (and yet, of the very same substance),
– from Him that begetteth,
the Son now speaketh the Word,
as the Son is the Word and the Word is the Son.
What does this all mean to us?
– what then is our duty to God?
This evening we see and worship His greatness, this child born of a virgin named Mary;
And this baby will be called Jesus as instructed by the Angel Gabriel.
But this baby (who is fully God and fully Man) on the night of His birth, is unable to speak a simple word.
This greatness, this mystery, looks not so intimidating within the care and love of Mary and Joseph,
surrounded by animals and not royalty.
In this tender moment tonight we see “The Greatness” of our God – who created everything from nothing;
the heavens and the earth – all of the cosmos,
And yet, it is this very greatness, that the True Greatness is truly revealed,
and this Greatness lies within His smallness
as He loves and cares for each one of us.
Why would a God of Greatness care for the smallness of the human soul –
why would He bring the vastness of His Greatness into the heart of our smallness?
Job pleads and asks this great God (Job 7:17)
What is man,
that thou shouldest magnify him?
and that thou shouldest set thine heart upon him?
(Job 15:14) and “that he should be righteous?”
And David cried aloud in Psa 8:4 “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?
Job and Daivd, like all of us here tonight, have looked up into the skies and gaze into its vastness,
and it’s very nature, within itself, reveals God’s power
and it captures our hearts within the bewilderment His awesomeness.
Yes, the skies are beautiful,
but it is only man that has the fingerprints of God imprinted within their very souls,
which has been since “from their mother’s womb
and now this night God unites His Creation with His Man
which He created after their own likeness,
yes, within His “own image”,
the heavens and angels as witnesses, saw, knew and celebrated
as Jesus fully God and is now fully Man.
Yes indeed, “God and Sinner” are now reconciled – – – forever!
Our God loves us and cares for us;
instead of being arrogant in His great power,
His love for us seems to have had the opposite effect;
as it seems to humble Himself & tell us:
“What is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?”
Man, in the pride of his heart, seeth no such great matter in this meekness;
but a humble soul is filled with awe and wonder.
This is LOVE – indeed; that God should take a filthy,
and enter into a covenant with it,
and truly make it His:
that is, that he should espouse such a loathsome thing to himself,
that he would be as a husband to it;
this is LOVE that is unfathomable,
a LOVE inconceivable,
this is the LOVE of God to man,
for God is most assuredly PURE LOVE.
The LOVE of GOD
lifts us, and humbles us, at the same time.
It lifts us to worship and adore him, and yet it should humble us of any pride and awe within ourselves.
And yet, this night was and still belongs to Him
and this night is a new beginning for mankind AND FOR EACJ OF US.
Of flesh He now is and what flesh – but our flesh – the flesh of His Creation;
but His flesh that is to become black and blue, bloody and swollen, rent and torn, with thorns and nails sticking within,
thus allowing our flesh to avoid such pain and agony.
But why? Why would The Son leave heaven, and all of its benefits, to be with us (?)
unworthy as we are, yet He now comes within our midst,
bringing God’s Grace to us through His Incarnation.
God: Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,
Has brought forth The Only Begotten Son (Jhn 14:6) who proclaims to all of us and all of the world that He is
“the way, the truth, and the life:
(and) no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
You see it is this baby that will cure us from our sin as well as the corrupt world around us,
this is He that will guide us home into His Loving arms.
Tonight when you eventually get in bed, calm your heart and your mind and listen
for even the angles worshipped Him tonight as the heavens rejoiced.
Listen, hear, and invite the Greatness of God into your heart, soul, and mind – – – into your life.
Our flesh has become His tabernacle Jhn 1:14;
Therefore, this day let us prepare to receive our Lord.
Constantly pray, give Him all thanks for His Grace (His Love) which allows you to have the Hope of His Glory.
Through His miracles, Christ has manifested forth HIS GLORY for all to see, Jhn 2:11
for until His coming, we had seeked our own glory. Jhn 7:18
But now, we seek a glory which was before the world even was, Jhn 17:5
not a worldly glory blinded by the world and a people who believe not. 2Co 4:4
But in continuance seek the glory and honour which promises immortality and eternal life. Rom 2:7
Within the brutal ugliness of this world:
walk with Him, talk with Him, listen to Him,
feel His warmth and know His Love,
place His will above your own,
ask Him to keep his promises by partaking of His Sacraments often,
make His Church your home and always thirst for His presence within your life.
Show forth His Love in youself, by showing forth your love for Him…
Take His hand, proclaim this wonderful gift
that we have received this night – the night of His Incarnation.
Come, thou long expected Jesus, yes, born this night to set thy people free,
Yes my brethren, rise up with willing feet, for the Bridegroom is arising – drawing nigh,
Let us, like the good shepherds,
sing a glad – triumphal song,
as His glory shall display.
O little town of Bethlehem, God’s true house of Bread,
Let us see Him this night lying within the loving arms of the “Mother of God.”
For she has brought forth a son, whom shall be called Jesus – meaning – “The Lord is Salvation”
God has comes down that man may rise,
Lifted by him to the skies,
Christ is Son of Man
that we Sons of God in Him, may be.
Glory to this New-born King!