And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:
Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.
So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.

(Genesis 3:22–24)

Joy to the world” we sing, and Christmas preaching must be joyful. But the carol of Christmas is blown on a herald’s trumpet. It summons to decision: “Let every heart prepare him room!” Here is the deep seriousness of Christmas. How will you receive him? Christmas calls you to the decision of faith, the choice made once that decides eternity. Every Christmas cantata born of God’s Spirit calls to you, “Today, if you will hear his voice!”

Today! Christmas announces Jesus Christ, the mighty victor who has crushed Satan and opened again the way to the paradise of God. Christmas declares there is a way back to paradise, to eternal life. He is the Way, who was born in Bethlehem of the Virgin Mary. Refuse him, and there is no other way to the tree of life. Receive him today, and receive also the right to eat of that tree in the world of the consummation, where your choice is forever sealed.

The Christmas message says, “Come, let us adore him!” but it adds, “Today!” There is but once to choose!

In our text we see that God directs the way to paradise through Bethlehem and Calvary. We see the necessity of this way, the frightfulness of this way, and the grace of this way.

The Necessity Of This Way

Adam and Eve were driven from the garden under the judgment of God. Because ...

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