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December 23, 2021 7:00 am
Today on the Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ.
He says in all things came into being through him, apart from him nothing came into being that is coming to be the positive and negative. Everything is been created, he created receipt of it was agreed by everything was agreed and visited at this point is not the only one who ever says the colossus of possible causes these the image of the invisible God. For by him all things were created, both in the heavens and the earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities all things have been created by him and for him. He is before all things and in him all things hold together joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana going pastor Bill Gebhardt now is once again he shows us how God's word meets and as a pastor I have a little ambivalence toward ICI by me season exciting and yet really challenging the reason it's exciting for the same reason you like it.
I love the music. I love the movies. I love the lights the presidents the whole thing is great. Christmas is wonderful. But if your pastor if it's challenging as well and I when I mean by challenging is that you have to try to come up with some fresh way to give a message on the Christmas story and I gotta think of a new angle. I don't want to say what I said before and out over the course of all these years that's become quite a challenge for me as I was thinking about it though within this last couple weeks. It was sort of ironic that I realize that Christmas can be summarized just simply by one work. Emmanuelle just one word.
Emmanuelle God with us 700 years before the baby was born in Bethlehem. Isaiah the prophet said, behold, a virgin will be with child, and bear a son, she will call his name Immanuel. This morning I want to speak about that I want to speak about the Christmas story. I without Joseph without Mary without a stable without a manger without the shepherds without the wise men without the star without the Angels. I would like to talk about the reality. The truth Christmas you see all those characters find their true meaning in the true meaning of Christmas. I want you to open your Bibles to John chapter 1, the gospel of John chapter 1. You see, this is the story behind the story.
If you stood when the shepherds stood that night you'd miss the story if you want to the manger and observe the baby born you never experience the story.
The story is rich and powerful and profound. These 18 verses and John make up the reality of Christmas.
John takes us into eternity will leave time in these verses, he takes us beyond this world to experience the reality of Christmas. He introduces the baby born in Bethlehem with six different pictures in these verses the first picture in the first three verses he says in the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God and he was in the beginning with God in all things came into being through him, and apart from him nothing came into being that has come into being his first picture is this. He is the eternal one.
He is the eternal one.
He starts off by saying in the beginning was the word when you meet in the beginning, literally in the Greek it's NRK there's no article there.
He doesn't say in the beginning that's good English, but not good.
Great care NRK and beginning he's talking about a beginning, but not the beginning.
I Genesis 1, there you have in the beginning God created but this beginning is a beginning before that began that's what he is saying he saying that when Genesis 1 occurred. The word already was in the beginning was the word the log loss in the beginning was the log loss and depending on who you where you interpret that perhaps a little bit differently. The log loss spoke differently to Jews and Greeks the Jews understood that the log assessment the word of God to the Jews. It meant and God said, and God spoke.
It was Revelation. When God spoke in Genesis, the universe was created.
They understood that to be the log loss. They understood how important that is for them.
They also understood that the log loss was more than just simply words. It encompassed the wisdom of God. You see, it was the wisdom of God is what he's talking about something bigger than just simply some words being spoken. Hold your place and go with me back to Proverbs chapter 8 Proverbs chapter 8 and you see a very similar picture that Solomon writes in Proverbs 8 concerning wisdom. He says I let me personify this, the wisdom of God the log loss of God. He says in verse 22 wisdom personified. The Lord possessed me at the beginning of his way. Notice the Lord possessed me at the beginning of his way. When he's eternal.
The Lord always had me. The Lord possessed me at the beginning of his way, before his works of old, from everlasting. I was established from the beginning.
From the earliest times of the earth when there was no depths I was brought forth, when there was no Springs abounding with water before the mountains were scattered before the hills I brought. I was brought forth while he had not yet made the earth and the fields notice first dust of the world when he established the heavens, I was there when he inscribed a circle on the face of the deep. When he made.
He said from the skies above, when the springs of the deed became fixed when he set forth he said set for the seeds boundary so that the water would not transgress his command, when he marked out the foundations of the earth, and I was beside him as a master workmen I was daily his delight he said rejoicing always before him, rejoicing in the world is earth and having my delight in the sons of men. Same idea that the bar of the Old Testament and the log loss of the New Testament before anything was created back to John in the beginning was the word the Greeks had a profound view of this log loss to the Greeks meant something very different if you were talking to Greek philosophy.
The Stoic philosophy. For example, the Stoics viewed the log loss as the cause for everything that log loss was the essence of everything.
The truth of everything is log loss. You even have someone like Plato and Plato said that that the log loss was the reality behind our reality. The log loss was the thing most real, not the things that we see, but the things behind what we see, the Greeks had a very different view than that the Jews, but they both had this incredible responsibility for this word log loss what it meant to them. He says in the beginning was the word and the Word was with God and then profoundly the Word was God. John just says it will word the log loss was God's amazing statement when you think about it, the Word was God.
He says in verse two he was in the beginning with God now understand something if you were in the beginning with God in the beginning of the beginnings, then you were what God only God was with God in the beginning he said that's exactly at the word was with God in the beginning. He says the Word was with God in the beginning and he says that look all things came into being through him, and apart from him. He says nothing came into being that is coming to being noticed the pronoun change him. He starts out with an Internet log loss now is masculine him.
He is the log loss.
He says in all things came into being through him, apart from him nothing came into being that is coming to being the positive and the negative. Everything is been created, he created using of it was agreed by him. It didn't. It wasn't created is into being that this point is not the only one who ever says this in Colossians. The apostle Paul says he is the image of the invisible God, and for by him all things were created, both in the heavens and the earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities all things have been created by him and for him.
He is before all things and in him all things hold together.
But an amazing introduction. This is in these first three verses. He is the log loss. The Revelation comes from God. He expresses then the will of God the mind of God, the power of God. The purpose of God in the plan of God.
What's that mean in verse four. He's not only the internal one. He is the revealed one in the next two verses in him was life and life was the light of men. The light shine in the darkness and the darkness did not comprehend it to her John's favor. Terms light and life all the way through this gospel. John talks about the light in the life and what that means he is the life giver.
He is the light. The revelation from God to men. John sees light and life is two things sort of joined at the hip together. The light comes in. When you believe in the light.
You have life.
That's what he says all the way through this gospel and notice he says the light shines in the darkness and the darkness does not. He says comprehend it.
The darkness doesn't understand the light that's interesting when he says he said the darkness cannot put out the light. The light invades this world of darkness hold you place and just go to the chapter 3 with me for a moment after Jesus speaking with Nicodemus just verses 18 and 19. After the famous verse in John 316 for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son.
He then picks up that same idea in verse 18. He says he will believes in him is not judged here does not believe has been judged already, because he is not believed in the name of the only begotten son this is the judgment that the light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light, for their deeds were evil. You can see he's talking spiritually here for sure the darkness doesn't comprehend the light doesn't want to understand the like. And the reason for this men live in darkness and their deeds are evil.
That's what John says.
Now back to John one.
He is the eternal one and he is the revealed one and now he says and he is the promised one. He said there came a man sent from God whose name was John kind of an interesting statement. John doesn't call him John the Baptist. Everyone else seems to calm John the Baptist, but John says look is the only John I'm going to talk about in the Gospel of John. John never refers to himself as John. He always refers to himself as the one whom Jesus loved, he said a very discreet about this news this about John will know John is.
He said I want to tell you that there is one, he says, who came from God's name. He said was John 400 years of silence. Just imagine like you been born in a period of time for the Jews. No profits. No one spoke for God, just silence. And you wait, century after century they wait and all of a sudden John the baptizer shows up and he starts with his message. Repent, repent. The kingdom of heaven is at hand. He starts to speak. He is a voice crying in the wilderness. He is not like other people.
He draws her attention to himself. Jesus said this in Matthew 11 he said. Among those born of women there is not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist that's Jesus assessment you have to say that is the greatest prophet of the mall and he says that's who came in, he is sent from God. Notice he came in verse seven as a witness to testify to the light. John came to be a witness. What is a witness to he just simply tells you what he is seeing what is experienced is jobs that tell the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth, and he says that's with John.
He came and he said as a witness to testify about the light. Why so that all might believe through him came to turn the hearts back to God. The people of Israel. He proclaimed this so that all might believe through him. He says in verse eight, he was nothing like what he came to testify to the light. John was asked at several times are you the Messiah. Are you the Messiah. John say no I'm not the Messiah I'm not the light.
I'm here to testify to the light and that's what John does.
He says in verse nine he says there was a true light which coming into the world, enlightens every man is a very difficult grid construction on verse nine.
What is it mean is the true light that enlightens every man could be means general revelation in a sense, it is comes the truth and the light is come that sort of help all men, that certainly is a possibility but I think what else he did is he came to shine in the darkness and reveal man what is his light will reveal them to reveal their evil in its judgment and his light. He said will save men in their from their sins comes and reveals everything is the revealer of God. That's what he does in his light is available to all men. That's what John is already said so. He is the eternal want to use the revealed money is the promised one, and then verse 10 years the rejected one. Up till now it seems like you're anticipating this is great. This story is going to really wonderful. It's a happy ending story can be a Hallmark movie, you know it's working in the right way and then all of a sudden you find the reality of it all. He said he was in the world and the world was made through him, world did not know what a sad statement that is not just in the world, but he made the world not that is just among men but he made man and rejected.
He said in verse 11 he came to his own and those were his own did not receive them, not now. It was in the whole world to the nation Israel, specifically Judah, he becomes stupid Israel as the Messiah and they reject them as everyone nothing to do with you, your Beelzebub, the Lord of the flies are of the devil. Jesus said when you did that you just committed on particles because I can help you is no hope that I can give you his own reject him, amazing statement the eternal one. That's the baby.
The revealed one, the promised one. The rejected one. And then it turns in verse 11 verse 12. He's the saving one. He said, but as many as received him, to them he gave the right to become children of God. Even those who believe in his name as many as received him notice it doesn't say he gave them the power to be children of God, you need any power that B exudes the know this Greek word is the right. He said if you receive the sun. If you receive the word if you receive Jesus Christ. That's what this verse as if you just receive Jesus Christ. He said he gave you the right to become children of God is been true since it's an amazing statement to the Jews. It was profound because I never thought of it that way. They always thought of it is what I have to do for God to be pleased with me in order to be a child of God. I have to live out my life through the law. The best that I can. There's always some kind of religious antidote to this, is always somewhere. We have to do this on her own. He says no it is have to receive him. If you receive him.
He said you will be called the children of God, and even though the word nearest techno which is a sort of a nominal word for for children.
The apostle Paul said in Romans that may only be children of God, but we cry out, Abba, father by the Aramaic word which in English would be daddy. This is profound of the Jews. Wait a minute.
He can be my daddy I could have that kind of intimacy with God because I just received the site. Yes, that's what the word of God says yes you got the right your child of God. While what a statement he said as many as received him, he gave the right to be children of God. Even those who believe in his name, believe in his name. What's it mean to believe in his name.
I believe that's his name, and I believe what's his name note in the Hebrew to the Jewish mindset. The name means everything. You are all you do, that's your name that's I have a good name you see a good name doesn't one is in a first name that rhymes with your last name and the negatives in our culture a good name means there you have the character the backup your life. You believe in his name, and I always have to say discusses you someone's always here is profound. And remember what his name is is is name is yeah sure that's his name Bart Joseph that's his name. His name is not Jesus Christ, okay Jesus is in Hebrew. It's not even Greek. It's we we turn it into a name.
There's nothing wrong with Jesus, that sort for Joshua or Joshua but his last name is not Christ. Okay, it doesn't say that was mailbox it out and say this with the Christ slip. He is Jesus the Christ. Christoph means Messiah. He is yeah sure why the Messiah but all that that means who is, he's God. He's the eternal one is the revealed one is the promised one. He said you gotta believe in all of that in order to be saved pieces and don't mistake this I love verse 13 who were born, those who are children of God, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, God became inherent so you can see this all the time and application us. Please understand I doesn't have any grandchildren decision everybody estimate pastor broke apart on the radio ministry of fellowship in the if you ever miss one of broadcast or maybe you just listen to the message one more time. Remember, you can Google a great website called in one place.com that's one place.com and you can listen to Fellowship in the Word online at that website you will find on with today's broadcast but also many of our previous audio program that Fellowship in the Word.
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