Sermon Archive

Arise! Shine!

He has come to you.  Instead of captivity; we experience freedom.  Instead of violence and an unsettled life; we possess peace.  Instead of devastation; we have fullness and joy. Isaiah is the Messianic  Prophet, always pointing people to Jesus. In Jesus God has revealed Himself to us.  In Jesus, we who could just sit there in dust and shame, are told to rise. God’s light has come upon us.

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A World Without Christmas

Living in a world with Christmas tells us that God has a heart of love toward us. She was eighteen and he was nineteen when they met. They fell in love, and one year later they were married. Some six years and three children later, she decided, while standing before the kitchen sink with a pile of dirty dishes and a pail of dirty diapers on the floor, that she just couldn’t stand it any more. She took off her apron and just walked out the door. Sometimes she would call home to check on the children, and on those occasions he would tell her how much he loved her, and he would ask her to come home. But each time she refused.

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Common…And Not

He isn’t common.  You can’t talk about someone with words like: Savior; Christ; Lord and say that that person is just like us.  Savior – a rescuer. Do you remember the name that Joseph was told to call this little child? “You are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”  (Matthew 1:21)

He is called the Christ which is the same as the Messiah, or the Anointed One.  God had promised throughout the Old Testament that He would send a deliverer, one who would come to rescue people from sin and death, He would come to bring a true and lasting peace in soul and even forever.  This then was the moment!! But get this – The Savior, the Messiah is also the Lord – Adonai, the name of God used in the Old Testament. I know that when the Shepherds saw the angel they were terrified. I wonder if they were even more terrified when they were told who He was and what He would do.  They would go to see God’s answer for the world. Common…and not.

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The Road No One Wants to Travel

Sometimes good people only have bad options.  And Joseph, for all the right reasons, is about to do the wrong thing.  That is, until God intervenes. “But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and says, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.  She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’” (Matthew 1:20-21) He then is told that this child will be called, “Immanuel”, which means “God with us”.

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Now

He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him.  He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.  But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. (John 1:10-13)  This is the grace of God. God has given you a new birth, a birth brought forth by His will and His power. Thus, it is always coming forth. It is a life that is yours now and is yours forever. It is yours now because the God who was, and is, and whoever shall be became one with us in our flesh in a now of the past, the now that we celebrate at Christmas.

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Here

What we celebrate in Christmas is the incarnation.  The incarnation is truly unique. It is not simply God existing in creation like one putting his hand within a basin he has made.  The incarnation is God becoming one with us, God joining Himself to our flesh and experiencing the heres of our life. God came here.  He came to the here of where you are. He came to the here of your sin and my sin, of your death and my death. God, the God who is outside of all creation, was conceived by the Holy Spirit within the virgin Mary and became a single cell living zygote that developed into the baby who was born in Bethlehem.

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Do You Still Have It?

But if you are someone who has it, you can’t keep it.  At least not just for yourself. Hope is not something to be greedy with.  We are just a few weeks away from Christmas and you’ll be hearing the song of the angels the night Christ was born a few times in these next 17 days, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”  (Luke 2:14 KJV) The news of God’s great revelation in Jesus is ours, we hold it in faith. And it also shows itself in good-will toward others. Hope is both held and shared.

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A Thief or a Lord

Is Jesus a thief, or a Lord?  I guess He’s both. He is a thief.  He will surprise the entire world on the day when He returns.  For many people His return is unexpected. For those who have not repented of their sins, who have not looked inside to see how empty they are without God’s redemption in Jesus Christ, for those who haven’t looked in faith to Jesus and His death to cover all their sin, and His resurrection showing Him to be the Savior for eternity, they are unprepared.  The door is shut. The words, “I don’t know you” are spoken.

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