The second man who missed Christmas was Herod. Herod was the king of Judaea, or as we should more accurately say, an under-king of a border province of the far-flung Roman Empire. There was nothing likable about Herod. He was a sly old fox, guilty of many murders, including at least one wife and three sons. He probably had no religion. He was a cynic. He knew the traditions of Israel, but he only half-believed them if, indeed, he believed them at all. Yet he should have found Christmas, if only because he had such a large stake in the outcome.

Am I pressing the point too much to say that the world is filled with such innkeepers today, materialistic men, women, and children who miss the meaning of Christmas simply because their business, parties, Christmas cards, trees, or tinsel seem too pressing? If this were not the case, there would not be so many grim faces in our stores or so many exhausted, sleepy people in our churches the Sunday before Christmas.

I believe that the experience of Rommel has been the experience of many persons throughout history. But of all these experiences, perhaps none has been more tragic than that of the men who missed Christmas. When I speak of the men who missed the first Christmas, I am speaking of the men who missed the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ. And yet, in another sense I am also speaking of many who miss Christmas today. These men miss the most important things in life, and yet—here is the tragedy— there is no good reason why they should miss it.

Finally, the way of the Lord is the only way. By that, I don't mean that there are no other ways that contend for our attention. But Jesus did say that he is the way, and that no one comes to the Father except through him (John 14:6). He is the only way that will get us to our goal. What is our goal? Our goal is to be with God and to have fellowship with him forever and ever. He made us in his image, and our goal is to be molded into the image of Christ that we might be all that he intends us to be, and to be made like Christ perfectly in the life to come.

Let me share with you a few things about this narrow way that God’s people follow. First, it's a definite way. I'd like to give you a verse that teaches this clearly. Isaiah 30:21 says, “Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.’” We need a definite way in which to walk in the midst of a confusing world. Apart from God’s definite way we don't know where we're going, and so we wander in this direction or that.