Brookdale Baptist
December 19th AM Service
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        Wednesday Night

        October 24, 2021 - 6:00 PM - 6:00 PM
        Prayer Groups
  • Hark The Herald Angels Sing
  • Angels We Have Heard On High
  • O Little Town of Bethlehem
  • Come Thou Long Expected Jesus
  • Isaiah 9:6

    Political leaders always disappoint.

    Here’s the thing about political leaders. They always disappoint us and they never accomplish everything they promised to do. Some accomplish more good than others, some last longer than others, and some behave more wisely than others. Yet, in the end, they always fall short of our expectations.
    We know this is true about King Herod, for instance. He told the wisemen that he wanted to know where Christ was born so he could go worship him (Matt 2:6-7). But he wanted to destroy Christ instead (Matt 2:13).
    This problem of disappointing rulers is not only apparent in the New Testament (NT) but runs throughout the Old Testament (OT) books of Kings and Chronicles, too. God’s chosen people, the nation of Israel, wanted a king.
    They chose Saul first, but he disobeyed God and became emotionally unstable.
    God replaced him with David, a man with many godly virtues and genuine faith in God, yet even he committed some disappointing sins.
    David’s son, Solomon, was a wise and promising king, but he married hundreds of women and failed to apply his wisdom faithfully.
    David’s grandson, Rehoboam, listened to bad counsel that split the nation in half.
    From that point forward, the northern ten tribes of Israel broke away and became their own nation for more nearly 200 years, at which point they were conquered and shut down by the Assyrian empire. All of their kings were very disappointing and ungodly.
    Just before Assyria conquered the northern tribes, a man named Ahaz ruled as king over the southern kingdom and the northern tribes were actually planning to invade his kingdom. With this threat in view, the prophet Isaiah advised Ahaz to rely on the Lord for protection, something he refused to do (Isa 7). He stubbornly refused and behaved like the ungodly kings of the North. He chose to rely on Assyria instead, an alliance which ended up costing him more resources than he was able to supply.

    There’s only one ruler who will not disappoint.

    That’s where Isa 9:6 comes into play. The prophet Isaiah looked past the failed king Ahaz, who lived and ruled at the same time he was a prophet, to a better king who would be born in the future. This king would not disappoint.
    Some Bible scholars and Jewish rabbis suggest that this king would actually be Hezekiah, the son of Ahaz, his successor. To be sure, Hezekiah would be a good king who trusted God and reversed many of his father’s failures. Still, even he turned out to be a disappointment when he began making proud and arrogant choices. Rather than give glory to God for his many blessings he boasted and showed off his accomplishments and riches as though they were the result of his greatness (2 Chron 35:25-26).
    It is impossible for the king that Isaiah describes to be Hezekiah because he describes this person in such magnificent ways that not even Hezekiah could match his description. In fact, though Isaiah is describing a king, the word king is mysteriously absent from this prophecy! Perhaps because he hopes to distinguish this person from the disappointing kings of Israel.

    He would be a child who is born.

    This emphasizes his real human nature. He would come into the world through the normal, humble birth process of a helpless child. He did not burst onto the scene as a superhero appearing with a flash of lightning or a conquering king appearing with a massive army.

    He would be a son who is given.

    This emphasizes the given nature of this child. He would not only be born as a human being, but he would be given to us from God. More specifically, he would be a son who is given to us from God, setting him apart from other kings who were just born. He wasn’t just born - he was a unique, special, and extraordinary gift from God in a way that no other human birth could ever be described!

    He will take full responsibility for governing.

    This will be his ultimate accomplishment. He will replace all governmental leaders in general.
    I say “in general” because this prophecy speaks in a general way. It doesn’t specify “the government of Israel” or “the government of foreign nations,” but simply says, “the government.” This child will replace all the disappointing leaders of this world, no matter what form of government or ruler may have been, all fall woefully short and disappoint.
    But Christ will step in at his second coming and take full responsibility for governing the entire world.
    Isaiah expands our understanding of this coming king by naming four of his titles. These titles show us that this king would be more than a special human being, he would also be a divine, supernatural being.

    He will be the Wonderful Counselor.

    Counselor refers to his advice, insights, plans, and strategies. OT kings relied on wise counselors to make good decisions, much like our U.S. presidents rely on cabinet members and strategic advisors. Some kings, like Solomon, were wise counselors in their own right.
    But no kings past, present, or future – no matter how wise – may be called the “wonderful” counselor, a word that means “extraordinary, miraculous, and supernatural.” (Wonderful and counselor should be read as a pair, not separately.) His insights and plans will be superior to the insights and plans of any other world leaders or their advisors.

    He will be the Mighty God.

    This title makes it clear that Isaiah is promising a king far better than Hezekiah would ever be - for he would be more than human. He would also be divine – he would be God. In fact, Isaiah uses this very title to refer to God most plainly in the very next chapter (Isa 10:21). This king would be God himself, the almighty, all-powerful God of heaven and earth. How amazing is that?

    He will be the Everlasting Father.

    While this next description also portrays the coming king as God, it’s not in the way you might suppose. Father here does not refer to God the Father as in “he will be God the Father,” the first person of the triune Godhead.
    Father here describes this king as someone who will:
    Care for the helpless (Psa 68:5)
    Care for his children or subjects (Psa 103:13)
    Discipline his people (Prov 3:12)
    Deserve their loyalty and respect (Jer 3:4, 19; Mal 1:6).
    A king who treats his people like a father treats his children is a desirable kind of king. That’s why good kings in ancient times were described as “father” figures, they were a father to their people.
    That this king will be like this is as God, though, is made clear by the description everlasting.
    The longest reigning king of Judah was Manasseh (55 yrs.), but he was a bad king.
    The longest reigning good king of Judah was Uzziah (52 yrs.), but that’s not everlasting.
    Hezekiah reigned only 29 yrs., so clearly he was not the king Isaiah had in view.
    The king who is coming, though he would be born as a human child, would also be an everlasting figure. Only God fits such a description!

    He will be the Prince of Peace.

    Every world ruler (or many of them) want to bring peace to their people and the world, but none of them can bring this to pass. Some have done better than others, carrying out peaceful diplomacy, signing treaties, withdrawing troops from combat, and implementing policies that encourage peaceful communities and economic prosperity.
    We’re glad for all these little advances when they occur! Yet all of these attempts at peace fall short for one important reason. They can never solve the underlying reason for discord. We have no peace as people because we have no peace with God.

    Jesus is the ruler who will not disappoint.

    So who is this king that Isaiah said would replace disappointing government leaders like Ahaz and Hezekiah? He is Jesus Christ, whose birth we celebrate at Christmas.

    He is the child who was born.

    “There is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11). He was born into this world as a human child.

    He is the son who was given.

    “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). He was given to us by God the Father.

    He will take full responsibility for governing.

    “The seventh angel sounded: and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, ‘The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever!’” (Rev 11:15). He will take governing authority over all the kingdoms of the world.

    He is the Wonderful Counselor.

    “In whom [in Christ] are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col 2:3). He is the source of all true wisdom and knowledge which is revealed to us in Scripture.

    He is the Mighty God.

    “Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ” (Tit 2:13). Paul calls him “our great God,” which is a clear New Testament (NT) evidence of the deity of Christ.

    He is the Everlasting Father.

    “Therefore he is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them” (Heb 7:25). He lives forever which ensures that he will never stop standing in the gap to meet our spiritual needs and more.

    He is the Prince of Peace.

    “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). He alone will bring peace to the world because he alone has made it possible to have peace with God.
    Here’s the thing about political leaders, even the better ones.
    They always disappoint us because they’re always temporary and only human and – most importantly – they’re unable to bring about peace in our hearts with God.

    Key Takeaways

    Trust in Christ for genuine peace with God.

    Like the OT kings and any other world ruler, we’re also very disappointing people. We let other people down when we act selfishly and fail to trust in God. We need to stop relying on our own efforts to find peace with God and put our trust in Christ alone, the child God has given who can save you from your sins and give you genuine peace with God. If that’s your need, would you consider doing that today?

    Hope in Christ not in other political leaders.

    If you’ve already placed your faith in Christ, then I have another question for you. Have you stopped trusting in human political leaders to meet your needs and give you a peace-filled life? Like Israel, the United States of America also has a series of leaders – though presidents rather than kings – who’ve always disappointed us, even those who’ve been better than the rest. They’re temporary, sinful, and unable to provide genuine peace and prosperity.
    This Christmas let’s refocus our hearts on Christ rather than place our hopes in political leaders. There’s nothing a king or president can provide that Christ cannot provide better and forever. Let’s look far past our human “kings” and look ahead with confidence in King Jesus who will come a second time to take responsibility for all the kingdoms of the world and reign with peace and justice forever.
  • Silent Night
  • Joy Has Dawned
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        Wednesday Night

        October 24, 2021 - 6:00 PM - 6:00 PM
        Prayer Groups

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