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He's Still Astonishing

Anchored In Truth / Jeff Noblit
The Truth Network Radio
February 21, 2021 7:00 am

He's Still Astonishing

Anchored In Truth / Jeff Noblit

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Let's take a Bibles together as we make sure all of our electronic devices are turned off, and let's go to Luke chapter 2, I thought I might do this in. I want to say this before I do this that Tom if you don't participate in this is your business. You don't have to spite anyway. Okay is on the talk about your health little bit but I just wondered just been our congregation on Sunday morning we had all the folks in the balcony were down here would be pretty full. Be honest. How many of you have either know for certain. You had this COBIT virus you had test your positive or you had them clearly.

The symptoms maybe one severe seating intense but you're sure you've had it, or, thirdly, you've had at least one of the vaccination shots or you got a blood test.

Along the way and you have antibodies that you had on the QT member almost 4 and I just wonder for us just curious if one of those four is true about you, would you raise your hand rotten or mercy. We raised herd immunity but had to be 75%. I just I just was curious.

You know we we kept it very closely in the office. We want to stay on top of who might have needs and whom I had the sickness and praise the Lord for the overwhelming majority was not very serious for those that it was our course. Our hearts go out to them and their families love them so dearly, but that's some I don't know this is been a curious year to be a senior pastor you just need to this week to week, you just strain about what's the right approach was the right thing to do but Tom that showing of hands. If that's typical for our area and for our country. Maybe the scientist from John Hopkins was right when he said by April. We are to be about done with this know the liberals tell us to listen to the scientist you still know which one listen to something's leg sometimes are saying the same thing.

I him encouraged and I want to be encouraged, regardless of the outward circumstances, but I'm deftly encouraged Luke chapter 2 will begin in verse 41 to get the context, though, we will look more closely versus 48 to 52 Luke chapter 2. The Bible says. Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the Passover and when he became 12. They went up there. According to the custom of the feast, and as they returning after spending the full number of days the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents were unaware of it but supposed him to be in the caravan and one a day's journey, and they begin looking for him among their relatives and acquaintances when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem looking for him.

Then after three days they found him in the temple seating in the midst of the teachers both listening to them and asking them questions. Wouldn't it be amazing to have seen Jesus at age 12, verse 47 and all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers course they were.

He wrote the law they were studying verse 48 and when they that's his mom and dad, Joseph and Mary when they saw him they were as it were astonished and his mother sent him someone, why have you treated us this way, behold, your father and I have been anxiously looking for you and he said to them, why is it that you were looking for me. Did you not know that I had to be in my father's house, but they did not understand the statement which he had made to them and he went down with them and came to Nazareth and he continued in subjection to them, and his mother treasured all these things in her heart that Jesus Increasing in wisdom and stature in favor with God and men center on that phrase where the text says they were astonished Jesus astonished his mom and dad and I submit you this morning.

He is still all astonishing Merriam-Webster in their dictionary defines the word astonished or astonishment as to be stricken are to strike with a sudden and great wonder or surprise.

I did look at the etymology of the English word, but perhaps the reason for that is because it comes from the Greek word that used in our text is translated astonished because the Greek word here comes from two other words that mean simply to go out by striking I got an old Compaq tractor that I play on and there their opinions that hold various implements on and sometimes I think Hammer just found at the end and knock it out, less the picture. This word gives us each to drive out by striking it has the idea to be struck out of your mind. Something happens. It is just so unusual is just so out of the ordinary are opposite of what you expected that it just keeps your mind out of gear for a minute if you see with wonder struck out of your mind ought to call it this way your brain is knocked out of gear.

Your tongue is all tied this for a moment. And that's what the picture of this word gives a senior now the same Greek word is translated astonished to hear is sometimes translated amazed at the same idea.

For example, in Matthew chapter 7 the Bible says they were amazed at his teaching a different word with the same idea in Matthew eight says they were amazed that the wind and the sea obey him. In Matthew nine. They were amazed at his power over demons and disease. Matthew 27 they were amazed at his silence before his accusers, Jesus is amazing and in our text as it says he is astonishing. By the way, he still astonished that the challenge will come back to this, the sea astonished you have you done to Jesus down in your thinking in your motions to where you kinda got him in a comfortable box. Are you still open the text and had your quiet time Mark when you study your Bible over and the man of God preaches the word in the truth of Christ comes forward. Do you not find yourself sometimes astonished again. Jesus I in our text notice distraught parents and the Savior at peace. Mary and Joseph are distraught. But Jesus if I'm I could say it this way is quite shield about the whole thing in verse 48 when they saw him they were astonished the understand this culture. It's almost always the father, the man who speaks with the family, but here is mother speak you know why she's overwhelmed with the motion because women do that about their babies. God made women to do that about their babies. Amen for that. Thank God.

God didn't just give babies deities. We need mom's. We need ladies with that deep feeling of compassion so is mom speaks up verse 40 insists on why be treated as this white behold your father not been a justly looking for you as to what she's done, she just rebuked the son of God, not a strong rebuke and understandable rebuke, but yes, I guess the memories of the Lord's Nativity have become them to her. Mary is now cast into the realm of the typical loving parent who's worried to death over her missing child. This points out the infirmity and the limitations of fallen humanity. How we all quickly forget the Lord's previous provisions and his unfailing promises when a crisis occurs, Mary is here marked by anxiety and fretting that Jesus is marked by heavenly tranquility is really an application here for us. Let's be reminded by this very setting that there is never a moment when he is spreading to say that again in the midst of what were living in our country today, the world today. There is never a moment when the King of glory is spreading.

There is never a moment when the King of glory is worried. There's never a moment when the King of glory is anxious or even concerned no matter your present trial or trouble heaven is at peace and rest. Think about that, but that's one of the things the Lord's teaching. His parents right now.

You can only see me through the limitation of humanity, but I've got to start preparing you that I'm not really just your son. I function according to a higher standard that you cannot yet see child of heaven be reminded that your outcome rest with the powers of heaven. God has not been caught off guard by any crisis that is come upon you. Heaven knows all about it and even before the crisis came heaven had a hand in it. Amen. Going shouted out his buddy said, divine providence. She loves it and he loves the Westminster shorter catechism tells us God's works of Providence are his most holy wise and powerful, preserving and governing of all his creatures, and of all his action's God. God's invincible power created all that is also that same power directs all events to their appointed Indians. His hand may be hidden, but his rule is absolute.

Some some verses that remind us of divine providence and everything is under control because that's part of what Jesus is teaching Joseph and Mary.

Yes, your torment in your anxious and you were worried to death. Heaven is not and I walk according to heavens edicts. Ephesians 111 reminds us that he works all things after the counsel of his will. Genesis 5020 Joseph tells his evil brothers.

As for you minute for evil but God meant it for good. In order to bring about this present result to preserve many people alive. Acts 223 Peter preaches on the day of Pentecost. This man referring to Jesus delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put them to death. You're responsible for this evil.

You did to Jesus. But God was behind it all is God was redeeming the children through his death, Romans 828 reminds us, and we know that God causes all things to work together for the good to those who love God. Those who are called according to his purposes. You see, the doctrine of the providence of God is as practical as it is powerful. In other words, in our practical daily lives. The provenance of God is practically applicable. It helps us. I know I'm walking on holy ground here so I walk with some reverence, but to know when our dear brother Keith Gladney had his automobile accident. I think he had a heart attack us with a determined and I met the family in the intensive care waiting room over at the Florence Hospital. I think maybe we had prayed together, they were troubled. Of course with the grace of God seemed to be holding them up, and Gary Kees's son-in-law looked to me and said pastor you preach to us the truth of the sovereignty of God in all things and that everything that happens is for God's glory and for our good, were standing in that right now. Providence of God is as practical as it is powerful as part of what Jesus is teaching his parents.

God's providence of God's will is what matters here even married his dear human mother. You might say I have a reason to be emotionally and distraught and worried, but even she must submit to the dictates of heaven. Call her emotions back in line to the will of God for this special son that she has a limited stewardship over but who never really belonged her.

So we see distraught parents and the Savior at rest. Secondly, less notice preparing the parents for his messianic mission. We could on this, but let's explore it a little bit more. That's what he's doing is beginning death to bring them over to understand. I've got a calling from my heavenly father that you've got to begin to grasp and accept in verse 49 Jesus is answering back to Joseph and Mary, and he said to them, why is it that you are looking for me. Did you not know that I had to be in my father's house. Very interesting statement is it's as if Jesus saying. What does this surprise you.

Do you not remember who I am. What the father sent me here for Mary and Joseph should have known this, but like us. Her faith was not always awake while that's that's a good thing to think on. We have faith but don't we find ourselves sometimes running slam into something that George was realize we better start faith, it will we work fully faith awake less were Joseph and Mary were he says here in verse 49 to Joseph and Mary had to be very powerful, emphatic phrase I had to be about my father's business. Jesus was God centered his life and purpose was to the glory and honor of his heavenly father and told Bay his heavenly father fully. John 638. Later in his ministry he said thrive come down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me notice the contrast here in verse 48. Mary says your father and I in effect have been worried to death about you. Verse 49 Jesus said no. I had to be at my father's house. Mom, you gotta remember who's who's mom who my father really does Jesus, in effect, to see my father was not seeking me.

I'm always with him. The angel had told Mary in chapter 1, verse 32 that her child in her womb was the son of the most but now publicly and formally this is set as a seal's true identity is unfolding, revealing itself and his mother must not interfere with his work is her role to fully submit to the heavenly father will they said I had to be.

Did you not know that I had to be in my father's house. Here Jesus is undoubtedly continuing the preparation of his parents that he must answer to one who is above them and that he would not be looking to them for guidance like he did before. Perfect righteousness would be fulfilled as he saw the father's will.

He could not err nor stray from this divine guidance. Oligomers 50 but they did not understand the statement which he had made to them.

We find that kind of interesting because they had had significant preparation rescue question, do I preach the word to you on Sunday sometimes loud and sometimes forceful and hopefully always push with Spirit Rock conviction and yet Sunday night doesn't rolled around a rollaround to you kind of miss and forget what we talked about that morning.

Well we can sympathize with Joseph and Mary.

They had plenty of help to understand this plenty of of that if you will intervention from heaven. They were just not yet able to comprehend the dawning of the messianic consciousness in their son.

I'm in Jesus had said, in effect, God is my father and I must be in his house. So while Mary rebuked Jesus earlier when she says, where have you been what you doing were anxiously worried about you. Jesus turns around and gives a mild review back his mother and said you know where I had the to be my father's house.

So this is a transition from Jesus being the son of Mary to showing to hurt them and ultimately the whole world. I am the son of God, he gave another if you might even say a completion to this training to his parents and John to the is the wedding and they're running out of wine and his mom.

Perhaps she understood. He had a special anointing and a blessing on his life, at least, and she's talked about him. Can you do something about the wine and here's the way Jesus responded back to her woman. What do I had to do with you while at me if you would like your son to come up and say to you and you mom woman what I have been with you my friends call my mother, Sgt. Geraldine, I don't know what she would've done, but whatever.

She grabbed would've been appropriate for my corporal discipline at the moment but I'm not Jesus. Jesus is not trying to be hurtful or disrespectful. I think he's using a firm mainly jarring say dear mother To accept who I am and what I'm sent to do well. Not only this distraught set of parents and a Savior at rest. Not only is he preparing the parents for his messianic mission less notice. Thirdly, our astonishing Lord. I couldn't get away from that phrase up there in the text. The business that they were astonished at him. In verse 48 and then we come down to verse 51 and the Bible says he left with them and continued it may stick a bit habitually continue on. He continued in subjection to them. That's kind of astonishing to me. He makes this strong forceful statement that I had to be about my father's well. I'm doing my father's work. I'm not your son the way you would be a regular son. I did the same time, he turns right around and he goes back home and submits to them, like any 12-year-old boys astonishing, just not the way you'd figure it was going to work. That's not what I expected.

What to three versus later, so his heart drew him to Jerusalem to his father's house, but he knew his duty was to go to Galilee and stay under the authority of his parents, his human parents and early parents I should say Joseph and Mary. This subjection to Joseph and Mary was indeed obedience to the fifth commandment which tells us very simply children.

Honor your father and mother's are not here a lesson for all of us as were raising children and maybe your child trying to grow up today. One writer said it this way, and she undertook to fulfill all righteousness. He faithfully and cheerfully obeyed.

The fifth commandment.

Let us mark the force of the obligation of his example Joseph was only his supposed father. Still, he was subject to him, and though Jesus was considerably advanced in life and strong and wise. Still, he was subject to his parents though he was the son of God, whose name was wonderful Counselor, mighty God, everlasting father, and Prince of peace steel. He was subject to his parents on earth when all this is considered how can any child plead exemption from obedience to the field commandment powerful truth and that has an astounding element to it that the son of God honored the commandments of God, particularly honoring his father and his mother.

So for you young people here Jesus was not exempt, then you're not exempt either parents should rule with loving authority over their children, and children should submit obey and honor their father and their mother just like Jesus did well in all of this thing again I come back to this word in verse 40 at this was astonishing to Mary and Joseph is all this is playing out again that would astonish means to go out by striking is as has the idea that they were struck out of their minds. They were thrown into a daze if you will, their mind was knocked out a gear and their tongues were tied we know how to respond with what each of those will have respond to what he's just done is the idea of I don't know what to think. I remember on the old Matlock program. I think they may still be some of those reruns were Matlock is the old country. Allow your buddies practicing in Atlanta on he's a Swamp Fox you know he's he knows how to get the truth and win a case, even though it looks like he didn't have enough sense to compete with the big city lawyers. On one occasion there was a guy on the stand who was just completely lied and deceived and everything that he had told Matlock he believed in the Solomon after that that case was over and he is walking on the court. This is what you think about your witness and what he did Matlock say this is one the darndest thing I've ever seen, but it was close to it this point was I don't know what said that so all that so far out there I don't know what to say about. That's were Joseph and Mary, by the way, that's where we should be because that's the way Jesus is he's astonishing and I was say to you church this morning. If he's not regularly astonishing. You think you're not getting to know the true Christ. He's he's not he's not feeding to what we're looking for. Most of time or I should say much of the time.

So many in the professing church so many in the evangelical or Baptist Church certain so me and our world have embraced a Jesus that is far from astonishing, just kind of temple typical and ordinary, and the sweet precious though to the debtor that it may take you Jesus. Jesus is who he is and ladies you get your emotions in line and bleed with the books is about a man you get your hearts and minds in line and you agree with what the book says about him even though he's going to astonish you from time to time.


From time to time, Joseph and Mary of course had known Jesus like no other for the last 12 years not just that they knew he was no typical child. The angel had spoken to both of them. Joseph and Mary. The angel had made it even aware to Elizabeth and Zacharias got it made it known to the shepherds to them. The wise men Simeon and Anna me that had a lot of information from heaven about what was going on a new this baby was they had all this to prepare them for this extraordinary child. This holy being, and his divine mission yet they're still astonished. Jesus rightly known as the most astonishing human of all times.

You know why listen to me. He does not fit the conclusions of the natural mind and he does not fit the sentiment of the natural emotions. Every time you think you're in line with Jesus. You'll study something new now subject to all these none along that line the more I was astonished at how different he is than what I thought as a young pastor. I can't tell you, even to this day I continue the time after time after time. At the time. I did throw away my definition or concept of who Jesus was and agree with the book against me.

He's astonish and then after a while you begin to love him because he's astonishing you love him because he's holy. He transcends anything we could think or feel glorious beyond our comprehension.

Remember years ago when everybody started wearing little bracelets WW JD stood for.

What would Jesus do I believe there was in such a sincere sentiment and that I don't think I ever wore one to my warm one. I'm not saying that's evil or wrong, but it's not a very wise thing because you have no idea what Jesus would do. Every time we see text in a narrative on Jesus confronting an issue he most of the time doesn't do what you think he would do you know what Jesus would do. I don't know what Jesus would do in this comes back to this simplistic dumbing down of Jesus to this natural viewpoint of what we think he would be like, which is nothing but idolatry. I'm going to leave the tree Jesus is astonishing. Just when you figure him out, he'll astonish you again. I've used it many times, but I like to use as illustrations because I want to stick with you CS Lewis's book the lion the witch and the wardrobe.

Yes, the character of the lion Ashland. The lion who represents Jesus Christ that the end of the book they're all celebrating and partying in as ones one the day and all of a sudden what sees as on going his own way away from the celebration.

One of the less mature characters of the books is where is he going, what's he doing that positive is he leaving one of the more mature character said he's wild he's not a tame lion. He's not safe, but he is good astounding. That's what CS Lewis wanted to get is not the Jesus of your human intellect for your human sentence.

He's the Jesus and God is not a tame lion.

He is the regularly astounding Jesus. So here in our text. Jesus is at the temple, sitting at the feet of the Jewish authorities.

By the way, which is the custom of all boys at his age in Israel that go to the to the temple and be taught by the rabbis. Then he turns right around after Terry telling Joseph and Mary that he had to be about his father's business and he submits to them fully. The Bible says that by the way, was one of the astonishing things to me as a young Christian was to learn God's lines of authority.

I thought when I came to Newport to know Christ and I was learning God's word that I could be just my free moral agent out here.

I could be independent because I was wise. Now that I was taught very thoroughly about God. Structures of authority that told me know I still wish to submit to my parents now still to submit to my pastor's and those in authority over me and that's what I did. That was astounding to me when I learned that is astounding that God can got a young person through their parents and their church leadership is a great safe place to be. I rock glory dated, but I was astounded by when I first learned it in John 12.

For example, we have the woman pouring the costly perfume on Jesus feet 11 text says it but it was costly to the extent that it tackle an annual wage of an average workingmen to pay for that and Judas Iscariot, the hypocrite in the phony steps up and said while we could taken the money for that perfume in and help the poor and been Jesus does something astonish uses the poor. You have with you always.

She's preparing me for my death, among other things, Jesus was saying. Certainly Christians care about those who are hurting around us but nothing takes the place of our primary ministry of the gospel and getting spiritual therapy to their sin destroyed and ruined hearts and lives. What good does it do to feed a man and sending the hell healthy.

Jesus astonishes didn't say what you think he would say in the settings in Matthew 15, a Gentile woman comes to Jesus and she's imploring Jesus to heal her demon possessed daughter and rot of the gate.

Our Lord looks at this desperate what one pitiful woman and since I can't give the children's bread to the dogs.

Not what I was expecting him say the Jews reviewed Gentiles as Gentile dogs outside of the kingdom of God. Dogs run unclean involved animal to the Jewish understanding Jesus says that desperate when I can't give the children's bread to the dogs course is a lot going on there. I can unpack all of it, but among other things, Jesus was saying you're all Gentile dogs.

You're all vile sinners who need a Savior.

Then he turned around and showed compassion and healed her daughter astonishing is not what I would've done this not what I would've thought he would've done it just keeps astonishing us in Matthew 11 there is a lack of support for Jesus, especially among the religious leadership of the day and they were rejecting him in Matthew 1125 and 26 at that time Jesus said, I praise you father, Lord of heaven and earth that you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and revealed them to infants.

Yes father.

For this way was well pleasing in your sight is not what our natural minor natural emotions would think Christ would say Jesus, I thank you that you've hidden this from something they can't see it or come to me. I think you did you rebuild it to others and they will see it and come to me and you. Doing it this way as well pleasing to you. Astounding, not to bring out a gear for a while.

There's only one way to joy in this Jesus that's bow before him and say yes Lord, what you say is right and everything I feel or think that may contradict it is wrong, astounding Jesus in Revelation chapter 20 Revelation chapter 19 we see Jesus returning this not not this Thomas. The Lamb slain, but as the lion of the tribe of Judah comes crashing down to heaven are from heaven to earth in the most violent, wrathful vengeance and retribution.

You could ever imagine by factors beyond imagination. A bloodbath as Christ destroys the earth and destroys those who do not know him and who are his enemies asked the typical liberal pastor liberal theologian they that they they reject you while they don't want astounding. Jesus.

They will pick Jesus.

They want a tame lion is astounding and then we don't have time there so many we could look at but I can't stop without this one, less the glories of our salvation it so astounding, the wisdom, the power, the beauty of our salvation that Jesus came to the office of Savior Messiah. He became fully man, yet remain fully God, he fulfilled the law in his life and he fulfilled the law that was against us in his death, taking our retribution in our judgment. We deserve as transgressors of the law buried rose again from justification and now is at the right hand of the father interceding for us. That's down, you'll find that astounding. You're not a child of God can't know that it just pass it off cash regeneration of our souls by the preaching of the gospel. The power the Holy Spirit.

The justification that whereby we stand justified the moment we believe on Jesus Christ. It's a standing that can never change, yet at the same time, we continue on in his earthly pilgrimage in a sanctification of growing in Christ and then one day whether he returns first party takes us to heaven through death to be with him will be changed to be glorified. Like you, that's glorification on these truths, you could preach on them endlessly. That's astounding. But in back of all of that, there's that. Perhaps most astounding truth of all and that's the truth of grace.

How astounding is grace this one verse about it.

Romans 520. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound. If you sinners you'll be grateful for that. If you're not soon I'll have anything for you but for us sinners. That's powerful that much more abound. There has the idea of super abounding it's superpowerful you CCN came into the human race from the original Adam in the sand principle and sin pollution became viral and spread to all the descendents of Adam multiplying exceedingly and rapidly leased to each generation.

Sin is powerful.

It stains and poisons throughout the entire human family plunging all meaning the rule and condemnation and despair.

But where the first Adam brought in CN.

The second Adam brought in grace. Jesus is the second Adam, and he brings in grace, and not just your grace means special favor. He brought in this unique special devotion in favor to his children, his church and state is leaving there's not just grace. It's super abounding grace. I'll just favor you are really really greatly deeply favor you while there's nothing in you to earn it or deserve it or to merit is astounding. Grace places us as holy and blameless before God, but grace does not just take us back to the state of the original Adam before he send know this is such a superabundant favor a grace… Beyond that, and places us in the very righteousness of his son Jesus Christ. We in the new creation receive back a standing with God.

Super abounding with the original Adam had grace while we sing amazing Grace say mother because it's astounding I guess is a preacher of the word of God in your pastor, nothing would throw my soul more than to know that all of you Marvel and are astounded over Christ, you can forget me. And I mean that genuinely you must not cease to be astounded by him. Maybe. Maybe I'll see you on your deathbed. Maybe I want, but in your last thought your last strength to verbalize the wonderful to hear you say.

I'm still astounded with Jesus.

I'm still amazed by Jesus not I live the good life not tried hard not. I went to church and I gave Todd but I'm amazed with him. Well, when I gave you the glories of salvation. Then I said, but maybe even more astounding behind all of that is this grace one last thing, but in back of all of that, there is this astonishing love astounding love. You see, grace flows out of this love he has for his children.

Even though their depraved even though their offenses even though their unlovely yet he has this pounding, powerful, unquenchable and affordable never ending love for us which the grace flows out of favor for us.

That's astounding. By the way he forevermore even all eternity will be astounding to us heaven will be a place where Jesus redeemed the winds will experience the deep glorious joy of being with the astounding one face-to-face, and for all eternity. They will experience the never ending pleasures of learning more and more of the infinite wonders of the astounding King of Kings and Lord of lords.

You get to heaven your own phone. The apostle Paul or Peter or somebody who's been there a couple thousand years and say what's heaven like to you, he Saddam's astounded, just astounded. I just keep learning more about the infinite wonders and glories and loving grace of Christ and be honest I'm more amazed every day so you did on the experience early strive and pray that Christ would be more astounding to you

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