All I Want For Christmas Is You

Sermon from CCM:City Centre


This sermon was preached by Tom O’Toole at the CCM:City Centre site of Christ Church Manchester on Sunday 15th December 2019.



This message was part of the ‘SERIES NAME’ series, preached at Christ Church Manchester’s church in Fallowfield in EARLY/MID/LATE YEAR. The full series included the following sermons:


GOD COULD SAY TO EACH OF US… ‘All I want for Christmas Is You’

  • Because that is why he sent his son into the world in the first place the very thing we celebrate at Christmas. To rescue people and bring them back to him.


  • Poor … Worked hard, but it was hardly lucrative. Social Outsiders … Stayed far from civilisation, slept out with the field. ‘Unclean’ … 5 Rabbinic lists of ‘proscribed trades’ … Shepherd made three!
  • What we see is that not only are they allowed in to the stable, but they are invited.
  • The action is going on in the stable … It is completely outside their knowledge. It’s like God looked at the scene … “Something is missing!”  … We need those shepherds. He went to get them! – He sent legions of angels!
  • Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for ALL the people. Even people like the shepherds? YES
  • The ultimate outsiders. The afterthoughts. The people who nobody gave a second thought to – God did! The lengths he went to to bring them in, even sending his angelic hordes… It’s like 2000 years ago God would see those working men, social outcasts on the hillside with the sheep and say ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS YOU – And then do what it takes to make it happen.


  • Break down some misconceptions about them …
    • (i) They weren’t kings – Magi from the East
    • (ii) There weren’t (necessarily) three of them – Three gifts
    • (iii) The more sophisticated view is Persian astrologers … That’s probably not right either.
  • ‘East of the Jordan’ – Southern Arabia is the best fit for the description given – place where gold is mined, and frankincense and myrrh were harvested from trees that grew there.
  • A long way away … No interest, interaction, participation in God’s people or promises. Shepherds were outsiders within the community – these were outsiders in the truest sense. Wandering the Arabian deserts with their tribe … an interest in stargazing.
  • Again it’s like God is saying there is something missing… what does he do to get them there? He gives them the sign that they can understand This God doesn’t only send his angels, he rearranges the starts in the Sky. That’s how much he wants them there.
  • Even people like the magi? YES


  • I wonder … if God would look at that scene and think … there’s something missing {shepherds} … something missing {magi}. I wonder who else he might long to bring to that scene. 
  •  No coincidence you are here this evening. He loves you …. He invites you … 
  • Christmas isn’t about presents or trees or endless repeats of bad TV shows. It’s not even about snow. It’s about people. And about what God did to come into our World and to bring us to himself.


  • Maybe next time you are going about your business in a shop of café or works Christmas party, and you hear Mariah come on just bring to mind the true meaning of Christmas. Imagine God in heaven saying ‘All I want For Christmas Is YOU’ … and then giving the best gift of all – his son Jesus, to personally invite you to come home to God.



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