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November 26, 2021 6:01 am
How is Thanksgiving connected with Christmas? Today we see that the greatest gift of all is God becoming flesh, and that is something to be most thankful for. Part 2.
The power of the Holy Spirit is within you now gives you your purpose, what is that, as God is good and that God is good, now lives in your heart go to his life, something he didn't deserve to give us life, something we can help with both Thanksgiving and Christmas have in common. Both are expressions of gratitude. I Thanksgiving express gratitude to God for all his provisions.
Christmas we express our gratitude to God for the birth of our Savior here stated, with particular this message Thanksgiving for a good guy. So how many were tempted by a malevolent personal force called the evil one because in the fall.
The evil was the author of all evil, not God.
And because of Adam and Eve's rebellion disorder and disharmony came into the world now within people. There is fear instead of faith. Now there's relational ruptures everywhere throughout the world wars and rumors of wars.
Now there is created. This order, not natural disasters, unnatural disasters that cost a lot. The loss of lives of people and property in and of course everything is not working is God created to be met. Interestingly, that sin problem that rebellion problem that treachery problem has been passed on from generation to generation. All of Adam and Eve's progeny, including you and me that some of you gold my sweet little baby girl my sweet little baby boy. He can't possibly be a bundle of original sin. Let me ask you question. Did you have to teach your children to rebel.
Did you have to teach your children to be disobedient. Did you have to teach your children to say no of course not, it's natural within their nature. It's natural.
Within yours in my nature and we continue to shake our puny fist of Almighty God and say I want my way and we continue to have this evil in our world today than what the Christian Bible teaches is that God created this world good perfect and then when the fall occurred.
He's in a dilemma. On the one hand he's holy and good.
This created order is not and he can't have a relationship personally because our God's a personal god with Adam and Eve. They walked in the garden daily with him.
He wants to be a personal relationship with us and here's is the limit. Did you know why you were created.
Christians believe in one God in three persons are Muslim friends accuse us of bleeding and three God's. Nothing could be further from the truth. We don't believe in three gods. We believe in one God in three persons, how do we explain that we don't try anymore than with my kids when they were three years old and they would object to something and they would always say that famous word. Kids love to speak which is why and is usually accompanied with that's not fair.
Anyway, let me ask you and your children do that as an adult, do you get down to their level to try to explain all the complexities of why do you of course not, you can. There's no way a three-year-old could possibly understand the depth of what you know is an adult will. That's an example of what it's like for the infinite God of the universe to explain to us his nature one God in three persons, all we know biblically that's what's clearly taught and in that relationship among father son and Holy Spirit. There was perfect law, perfect life, love can only exist if there is a direct object of the lot right you look and all exhibits or someone to love and that's the problem course with the Islamic God is he's a God of justice. But love is far from their understanding of God because he doesn't have anyone he can initially love will initially in the Christian God God the father, son and Holy Spirit all love one another perfectly.
The father love the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit let the sun.
The sun love the front is perfect triangle of love. And so, here's why you and I were created when God made Adam and Eve and all of us. He wanted us to enter into a personal love relationship with him because he's a personal God. He wants intimacy.
Some of you come from Catholic backgrounds or rigid denominational backgrounds were. You were taught, if you just today B&C, then God would love you. Nothing could be further from the truth. From the Christian gospel. God doesn't love you for what you do. He just loves you because he created you to be a lot of machine anyone to pour his loving to you so you could love him in return and love your neighbor that said Jesus said the entire Bible.
The entire wall can be encapsulated in one sentence. Love God and love your neighbor that that's what he intended to happen and so we created you and me to loving and we rebelled against that love. So on the one hand he's holy and good and can't have a relationship with us because of our depravity, but on the other hand, he still loves us dearly, deeply. So what does he do. How does God overcome that dilemma and the answer is this biblical doctrine called the incarnation God becomes one of us. The father said to the sun at some point in human history. Knowing our decadence, depravity and ultimate death because he could have a relationship with us and if we died were separated from him forever in our sin. So because of his love. He says to his son. At some point in the expanses of eternity would you go. Would you go and the sun. Although equal with the father in deity and power purposefully chose to submit himself to the father take on human flesh and be birthed in the stable in become important in a palace in Jerusalem or Rome, but he chose to be birthed among the poorest of the poor in humility God in human flesh, the incarnation, I love Mexican food and I love Mexican food man I like Mexican food ever had chili con carnet your that is chilly with flesh carnet chili con carnet you know what the incarnation is this great biblical doctrine were celebrating here on Christmas Eve God con carnet really God con carnet God with flesh, the incarnation God so loves the world that he becomes one of us to communicate in ways and styles and forms and worth we can understand. Just amazing when you think about now you need to know three great truths of the incarnation, the three great truths of Christmas Eve.
Here's the first one pursuit, pursuit most people know the true love demands pursuit.
I've told my sons that whenever they need that right person they need to pursue her because every woman I believe.
Call me an invitation to thinkable romantic but I believe that every woman wants to be pursued by a godly man in the message of the gospel is God pursued us, he took the initiative, he put on human flesh long before we ever cried out to him pursuit proves love. Walt Disney knows it you believe that. Think of the blockbuster movies through the years sleeping beauty is put under a curse by an evil witch the Prince in his great love does what he purses her against all obstacles in order to plan his lips upon her break the curse and give her life so that they live happily ever after that. As the story but it begins with the Prince pursuing his beloved, think about Rapunzel Cordell caught under the curse and a tower can't get out she grows.
Her hair really long and she drops it out of the window and what happens, the one who loves her.
Is willing to comply and climb and climb on her hair was one with the scalp you never thought about that if you keep climbing and climbing and climb till he finally gets to the top and hugs his beloved. The idea is pursuit and the two then live happily ever after. Think about the Prince and Cinderella.
I mean, he pursued her amidst the most dysfunctional cartoon family ever probably made it interesting how during Christmas time. Every dysfunctionality in our families exposes it. So anyway, let's not go there today.
Okay, so he pursues her even amidst the most wicked dysfunctional family possible in order to do one thing and that's put a glass slipper on her bare foot because he loved her and then pursued and just to show you that I'm cool and hip and up-to-date and I have four grandchildren to join to see the pictures anyway. The movie froze and anybody seen it. How many of you parents have seen it just wants just wants that's amazing how many parents have seen it dozens of times. Okay, got it grandparents as well as when most popular Disney movies today. Think about the story. There are two characters once named Anna. The others named Elsa you have seen the movie good for you else is under a curse and she is potentially frozen under that curse.
Animals are free from the curse. So she pursues her in love and she comes to her and is even willing to die for the curse to be broken and if you have seen the movie you remember this line repeated over and over again, only an act of true love can fall a frozen heart. Only an act of true love can fall a frozen heart is pursuit in the power of love and pursuit breaks down the frozen heart and there's only pursued in the trailers also presents this promised us free. See the baby grows up.
We love the will go over babies and majors. We hate it when they grow up, and then the responsible right. But the truth is, Jesus grows up. He lived the perfect life. None of us can live because he was conceived by the Holy Spirit in a virgin the whole process of original sin was not continued to him because powered the power of God conceived and because he did not have that's in condition he lived the life none of us can live.
He met the righteous requirements of the law God demands for all human beings, and therefore he could take our place on the cross. The penalty of God's judgment of death came upon him instead of you and me you talk about. He gave his life, something he didn't deserve to give us life, something we didn't deserve, and we received the gift the Christmas gift of eternal life by grace through faith. Praise God praise God and then for those of us who believe in him. Our hearts are born again. The cleansed of all of our unholiness and that then welcomes the residing presence of God through the Holy Spirit. When you invite Jesus into your heart. The Holy Spirit resides in you and isn't that amazing how the gospel of Jesus fits together one God in three persons, father, son and Holy Spirit. The father since the son who dies for us.
So the Holy Spirit can indwell our hearts forever. And that means no matter what you face folks as a believer in Jesus. No matter what trial it may be, no matter what difficulty may be facing Jesus will be there with you is very power and presence will be there with you and there's nothing in life you will ever face you want face unless he's there present with you. Isn't that good news would you give God the glory for that marvelous presence of the promised Holy Spirit means that when we place our last enemy, death itself will do so with Jesus. I can't speak for you, but I can't wait for that day when I take off this old wrinkly tired joint hurts earth soon take it off at the moment together because the presence of Jesus lives within me, then I'll put on a new resurrection body that has no disease, no despair, no depression, no turmoil, never facing rejection.
Again, none of those problems will ever occur in Christ lived within me tell resurrection body that will live forever. Are you looking forward to that day that that's the promise presence and in the third P's purpose was my purpose. I'm so glad you went the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within you now gives you your purpose, what is that, as God is good and that God who is good now lives in your heart go to good for the rest of your life.
Go to good find broken places in this created order that are not a part of God's original intent and go to good weather's sex trafficking here into that. To help those girls escape and have life when there's poverty go really care for young children so they can have upward mobility and a chance at life for the president to visit the prisoner and give that person. Your presence because they're lonely and don't have hope for those who need water you give them water to help sap the parched throat to those who have needs of food, you give them food. Whatever they need. Maybe you commit yourself for the rest of your life to do good.
That's the job description that your purpose until the day Jesus returns and he is going return. He is going to return and here's what the Bible teaches at some point in the future.
At some point in the future and only the father knows the day or the he's gonna look at the time when it's right turn to his son a second time is going to say, just like he did in the first advent. The first beginning with the cradle he's coming back in the second advent has the conqueror because when the father says go go go and he'll come back and he'll take God's children. If you're still here alive. Get your resurrection body then if you died before then you get your resurrection body then now you can applaud.
Give God the glory for that site, you see how it all fits together, biblical worldview creation good.
Genesis 3 the fall. The call of Israel didn't work the call of Jesus into the world. The formation of this church and the promise second coming. That's what the Bible teaches an answer that read any problem that people are experiencing did John Gilbert was a five-year-old boy who contracted a neuromuscular disorder. He was told that his body was slowly but surely lose strength over the next years.
He probably died before he was 10 he loved NBA basketball.
When they his mom took him to an auction and he saw as one of the auctioned items of basketball signed by every member of the Sacramento Kings. He wanted that basketball so the bidding started and he raised his very weak arms to show he wanted to buy it and then someone outbid them in the raised another card and he got outbid.
He raised another one until it got to a level where he knew he could finally one man offered an extraordinary amount of money beyond what anybody else could pay to purchase the basketball.
This man unknown to anybody in the room walked forward, took that basketball and placed it in seven-year-old John Gilbert's hands basketball that he would never dribble that he would never shoot that he would never pass to one of his teammates that Paul was given to him. Gilbert lived almost 25 amazing doctors and at the end of his life. He describes that moment, he said it took me a moment to realize what this man had done, I remember hearing gas around the room, then to thunderous applause and weeping eyes. Have you ever been given a gift. You could have never gotten for yourself. Has anyone ever sacrificed a huge amount for you without getting anything in return and all of us who follow Jesus have the answer that question only and the answer is moment listening coming joins me in person on overcoming my attorney Marciano presidency Charlotte rescue mission ask you a question will you do when you stand at the intersection of homelessness and addiction in the person's shoes for just the second one is it that you really need. You probably been one of the individuals who stood at the end of the interstate ramp holding the sign just said hungry will work for food, whichever use the money for food and booze and drugs with it most likely you hate your life you addiction has stolen every aspect of hope gonna be part of the fabric of society, but every morning you addiction screams and you surrender to it. There is one thing you do need and that is transformation the place to go to Charlotte rescue Mission Charlotte rescue mission works from the inside out to address the root cause of someone at the crossroads of addiction and homelessness. The rescue Mission provides free Christian residential high-quality substance abuse recovery programs to members of our community who otherwise would not be able to afford such services with a passion for holistic transformation in a love for Christ commissions 120 program has transformed the lives of thousands of men and women in our community. Charlotte rescue Mission's financial partnership. Thanks for listening today is our pastor David, thanks so much for joining eyes.
It's great to be with you Jen.
I hope you guys had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday.
I think I'm full of the Lord is what America calls black Friday and I'm sure you have some personal thoughts for us not as well I don't know how profound they are. But there may be listeners out there who don't know why it's called Black Friday and that's because after Thanksgiving. This day begins the spending free if you will more Christmas presents and most every company out there makes their money during this time season moves from the red kind of being in debt to the black being prosperous financially and that's why it's called Black Friday is the beginning point for spending in our culture to help our businesses move into a profit time. An profit mentality. Okay, so interesting that it comes right after the biggest day of giving thanks is and I must find myself wondering in my heart if this is an altogether great way to remember Thanksgiving if you will, because a lot of people are going to spend too much during this time of year and go into debt. Then you the Bible says very clearly the love of money is the root of all evil. Not money itself. That's neutral, but the love of money is the root of all evil and also there is that great warning in the book of Proverbs chapter 22 verse six that the borrower is the slave to the lender. And when people go into great debt during Christmas time.
Even if it's for a wonderful gift or gifts to other people going into debt's not a good thing because then you become a slave to the lender and you got to pay it back, most often with great interest as well. So it's a time to be careful even though I think even more importantly, it is a pivot time spiritually in the Christian's calendar toward anticipating the coming of our Lord. The Christmas season was called the incarnation God in human flesh, a gloriously wonderful time where we should focus not on presence PRESENTS but God's presence PRS the NCE coming to us among us actually in us so that we can face any trial knowing God is Immanuel God is with Emmanuelle. I love not. And I love being able to talk with my children about that because as a mom I want to go through every moment of grief with my kids and in pretax time that I get to say God is with you Emmanuelle and this is a great season to remind them at the end of the day gin you're not going to take your presence with you that have been given to you by family members, loved ones, if you're facing a tough time or trial, but you will take the Lord Jesus with you who lives in your heart who gives you strength to face whatever you may be going through a for his glory and his glory alone. So again, this should be a time of great anticipation as we look forward to the coming of our Lord and he talked with us for a moment just about finances. I heard somebody say that it's okay to have money not okay for money to have you and you could replace that with names and items and I think that's a good litmus test for it is Janet it's the same question asking another way, it's not what do you own the question is who owns you. And if God is the master passion of your life.
You understand Christmas rightly and you want to give gifts. That's a joy it's good to receive gifts as well. But you know who is the author and finisher of life in our faith and that's what you focus on sound good anti-Semites for your thoughts. Today David, thank you, Jen and everybody a happy Black Friday but just be careful about spending too much help with senior pastor and moments of hope church. We'd love to have you join us for where sent Sunday morning. Many Protestant states school located at 5800 Sardis Rd. in South Charlotte. You can find more information on our website.
Moments of hope church.org join us this Sunday morning school located 100 Sardis Rd. in South Charlotte church.org the entire moments of hope church helping