Rossville Christian Church
Sunday, December 13
- Way Maker
- Angels We Have Heard On High (Gloria)
- Intro:Have you ever doubted anything? Maybe you doubted your abilities, perhaps you doubted your lot in life, maybe you have even doubted God. Don’t worry, you are not alone in your doubt. It all started in the garden where Satan was able to deceive Eve into doubting the word of the Lord. No it did not end there, it went all the way up to Thomas who doubted the return of Christ as it says in John 20:27:Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”PrayDoubt is such tricky business. Doubt really leads to fear; either fear of missing out or fear of being wrong. What if is not a good policy to live by. Somebody asked me one time about my walk of faith, what if your are wrong? Well, no big deal, still had a good life lived with a conscience free of guilt and shame. And then I ask but what if you are wrong, what hope do you have? Doubt often times is just a matter of perspective and looking at things in the proper light. The two perspective we have this morning show how salvation came to the doubting, first to the Obedient then to the reluctant.The ObedientIn the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly. But they were childless because Elizabeth was not able to conceive, and they were both very old. Once when Zechariah’s division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God, he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to go into the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And when the time for the burning of incense came, all the assembled worshipers were praying outside.1. A Priest of the Lorda. One whom the people trusted to knowb. He spent his days with the Scroll“For the lips of a priest ought to preserve knowledge, because he is the messenger of the Lord Almighty and people seek instruction from his mouth.2. Upright before the Lorda. Followed the Lawb. Knew the Lawc. Raised his family to do the samei. Elizabeth was also uprightB. His Struggle - Luk 1:12-20When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born. He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God. And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” Zechariah asked the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.” The angel said to him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their appointed time.”1. Trusting in men vs trusting in Goda. Again, as a priest He should knowi. Held to higher accountii. Ought to have trust in the Lordb. Doubted that it was possiblei. Doubted like Sarah and Abrahamii. God uses impossible situations to shift perspective2. Careful when you ask God howa. Made him silentb. Signs can come but not always pleasantc. Just trust in the LordTrust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.C. His acceptance1. Named his son Johna. Against the grainb. Against family tradition2. Held to the promise of Goda. Was blessed with speechb. People were awed3. Confidences comes from faitha. Confidence in salvationb. Knowing God always does what He saysc. God continues to shift our perspective of possible and impossiblei. Including with salvationii. But some are reluctant to seeThe ReluctantWhile they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.A. The inn keeper - video1. No rooma. Wonder how many they wen to that nightb. Each person had no room2. Not just inn keepersa. Homes not availableb. Relatives not availableB. Jesus born in a manger1. Wherea. Bottom of a homeb. Cave somewherec. Common use of the wordi. People would understandii. No special context here2. No matterThe animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats. Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the members of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight.a. Not only true but figurativeb. Lamb of the worldc. Become the sacrificed. Rescued them from judgement of GodC. The World Rejected JesusHe was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.1. As with the Innsa. There was no room for Himb. They didn’t recognize His great message2. They busied their lives and missed outa. Message of Hopeb. Unwilling to make space for the GospelThe ChoiceIf the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you. If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet.A. Salvation came but what was my answer1. As Zechariaha. Unsure but faithfuli. Repentant to do God’s willii. Ready but unsureiii. Faithful and trusting of God’s Wordb. Was blessed by Godi. Given a sonii. Participant in the Gospelthat everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”2. The inn keepera. Unsure but rejectingb. Chose not to accept the callc. No room for God in their livesB. Either for me or against me“Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.1. Salvation comes to the doubtinga. When they trustb. When we believe in spite of ourselvesMy Dad and jumping into the pool - saw a rock drop2. We must chose this day who we servea. Either for God or against himb. We either live today with God or against Himc. In eternity our name is either in the book of life or worksAnyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.C. There will be no gray area on that day1. Day of judgement2. For those who repent there is lifea. That’s what Salvation was aboutb. That’s how salvation came at ChristmasD. But for those who choose life1. Choose abundant lifea. both now and eternityb. life abundant and free2. Choose the good things now in this lifea. Sure still troubleb. But it is welcomec. Choose the peace of surrenderStopped fighting my Dad on everything, things sure were easierConclusion:What will I choose, the good life or death. What will be my answer to God when He calls upon me, will it be yes or no vacancies? That time is now. If you are watching this, or are here in person, the Lord is calling upon you to answer, won’t you trust Him before it is too late? The Bible calls for urgency, we never know when it will be our last day. I am confident that my name is in the book of life how about you? Won’t you come and find salvation this Christmas?
- O Come All Ye Faithful
- O Come O Come Emmanuel (Veni Emmanuel)
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