Luke’s account of the baptism of Jesus focuses on his calling and purpose. Although some thought John might be the Christ, John was not. It was Jesus, God’s beloved Son, who would redeem his people, pour out his Spirit upon them, and judge the nations.
In the ninth chapter of Isaiah five names are given to the Messiah. This Christmas Eve sermon invites you to consider what each reveals about the Christ child. At our service the sermon was bracketed by two selections from Handel’s Messiah. The links before and after the sermon will take you to recordings on YouTube. The recordings are not essential for understanding the sermon, but may add to your enjoyment.
Christmas Eve 2018
Christians are often troubled when they see God help others, but not them. Why some are miraculously healed and others are not is difficult to understand.
Luke records a time when John the Baptist sent two disciples to ask, “Are you the one who is to come or shall we expect another.” They had heard what Jesus was doing, but what he wasn’t doing concerned them and they were struggling. Jesus answered gently and with great respect for John, referring to what the prophet Isaiah had foretold and saying in effect, “trust me.”
Being ready for Christ’s return isn’t a matter of knowing when it will occur, it is rather a question of being faithful to the tasks we have been given. You don’t need chats and diagrams to understand what Jesus said in Mark 13, just simple faith in your savior.
God took Ezekiel out to a valley where dry, human bones littered the ground and asked him, “Can these bones live?” Jeremiah had foreseen the destruction that took place there. Jesus used the valley as a metaphor for hell. Yet, the message God gave Ezekiel was a message of hope grounded in the power of God’s Word and Spirit.
P.S. You can get these sermons as a podcast. Just copy the URL below into your podcast player.