First Baptist Church
- Bible Trivia
- 'Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus (Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus)
- All The Poor And Powerless
- Nothing But the Blood
- Illus. Typical of last minute Christmas shoppers, a mother was running frantically from store to store. Suddenly she realized her three year old son was no longer holding her hand. In a panic she retraced her steps and found him standing near a frosty window, gazing at a manger scene. Hearing his mother’s near hysterical call, he turned and shouted with innocent glee: "Look Mommy! It’s baby Jesus in the hay". With obvious indifference and impatience, she grabbed him and said, "We don’t have time for that!" (From "THE WONDER OF CHRISTMAS" by Glenn Pease).How many of us are guilty of being too busy for Jesus this holiday season?And yet, He is precisely why we celebrate and why we’re studying Him this Christmas. The truth is, we have just begun to scratch the surface of Who Jesus really is. We’ve been looking at 1 verse that lists just four names for Jesus (turn to Isa. 9:6).6 For a child will be born for us, a son will be given to us, and the government will be on his shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.I. HE IS OUR PRINCE.There are two things about a prince I want to highlight today.A. A prince commands respect.A prince was someone who was highly respected and revered/held in high esteem.•He was considered royalty.Illus. We have trouble respecting authority in America.•That’s one of the shortfalls of being a democracy.•Our young people are being taught to challenge and even resist authority.When the British meet royalty, they bow/pay respect as a sign of submission/humility.In Biblical times, a prince commanded the same respect.•He is to be held in the highest esteem.•That means we submit to His authority whether we want to or not.•It means we honor Him and revere Him above all else, all the time.•It means we bow before Him in humility and treat Him like royalty.10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow— in heaven and on earth and under the earth— 11 and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.The second characteristic of a prince actually sets him apart from the king.B. A prince concerns himself with the people.Princes were usually more involved in the affairs of the country than the king. The king sat on his throne signing orders, while the princes were out in the trenches, governing the people.In 2 Sam. 15, David’s son, Absalom, was able to overtake the throne because he sat at the gate with the people and turned their hearts toward him.The people could better relate to a prince than they could to a king.Jesus, as our Prince, is also concerned with the affairs of His people.•He left His throne in heaven to humble Himself and come down to the likes of us.6 who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be exploited. 7 Instead he emptied himself by assuming the form of a servant, taking on the likeness of humanity. And when he had come as a man,The difference between Jesus our Prince and any other earthly prince/ruler is:•An earthly prince thrives on the respect he receives. Jesus renounced His respect.•An earthly prince seeks power/prestige. Jesus gave His up by being born in a barn.•An earthly prince gets involved in affairs for his own benefit.•Jesus got involved for our benefit.Jesus, as our Prince, not only commands our greatest respect, He also deserves our highest praise because He is personally concerned with the affairs of His people.Jesus Christ is our Prince, our Ruler, our Final Authority.II. HE BRINGS US PEACE.Shalom – also translated “safety, prosperity, success, wellbeing”.•Mentioned 236x in Scripture, 24x in Isa..Ps. 29:11 …THE LORD BLESSES HIS PEOPLE WITH PEACE.Is. 55:12 YOU WILL GO OUT IN JOY AND BE LED FORTH IN PEACE…Lk. 2:14 GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST, AND ON EARTH PEACE, GOOD WILL TOWARD MEN.But what exactly is “peace”? First of all, let me tell you what it’s not.A. Real Peace is not…1. The absence of conflict.Often we try to avoid conflict so we can “keep the peace”.Just because there’s no external conflict doesn’t mean there’s internal contentment.Many countries feel that they’re at peace if they’re not at war. It doesn’t work that way.Jer. 6:14 THEY DRESS THE WOUND OF MY PEOPLE AS THOUGH IT WERE NOT SERIOUS. ’PEACE, PEACE,’ THEY SAY, WHEN THERE IS NO PEACE.2. Humanly possible.The peace that Isaiah prophesied about, the peace that the Messiah offers is not humanly possible.“Mankind has never known peace. Our municipalities have laws against disturbing the peace. No peace treaty that man has ever devised has been kept. In man there is no peace; and here is why. It’s because man has never been at peace with God, and if there is not peace with God, then there can be no peace in the soul.” Clark TannerWe are a fallen people. We are sinful and wicked.22 “There is no peace for the wicked,” says the Lord.B. Real Peace is…Real peace gives the idea of being fully alive, fully content. Specifically, it means…1. Security33 I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”Peace isn’t the absence of conflict. It’s total assurance/security in the midst of conflict.•It’s knowing that no matter what happens, God is still in control!2. Rest28 “Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”3. Reconciliation1 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.Perfect peace can only be found when we are reconciled to God through Jesus Christ.4. A Gift27 “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Don’t let your heart be troubled or fearful.You will never find real peace/security/rest/reconciliation apart from the Prince of Peace.This Baby, Whose birthday we celebrate, is THE source of perpetual, perfect peace, a peace that we will never fully comprehend this side of Heaven, a peace that we cannot understand apart from the Prince of Peace!Jesus came to earth to be our Prince, our Ruler, our King.•Not by force, but by peace; His perpetual, perfect peace that passes understanding.Henry Wadsworth Longfellow didn’t end his song in despair. When he heard the bells on Christmas day, he looked beyond the conflict and stress of the moment and realized that real peace was possible but only in the Prince of Peace. His 4th verse goes like this:Then pealed the bells more loud and deep; "God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;The wrong shall fail, the right prevail, Of peace on earth, good-will to men.Do you know that kind of peace? Do you know the Prince of Peace?Do you know real contentment, security, rest in spite of the trials of life?Too many people are running around saying, “I don’t have time for that/for Jesus”.Too many people will never experience His peace because they will never accept the Perfect Gift that the Prince of Peace offers.You can only find perfect peace by giving your life to the Prince of Peace.The Bottom Line: Jesus Christ is our Prince of Peace.
- Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing
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