Advent 2016 | Part 3
Don’t you love this time of year?!
…how many other times can the radio play the same songs over and over and it really not bother you
…or how many other times during the year can you snoop out other people’s houses – literally creep through neighborhoods not be considered a threat
…I really do like this time of year. Everybody is more jovial, generous, hopeful
…this time of year has a built in hope to it
Reality of the post-Christmas let down
…You know, when we feel like an unplugged Christmas inflatable… deflated
Usually the Christmas let down does not come the days before Christmas or even the early hours of Christmas morning
…the problem comes the day after
…or for your kids, maybe only about 3-4 hours later
…when you search “post Christmas letdown” over 1 million Google returns… full of self-help articles (8 steps, “syndrome”)
This season, more than any other season in our culture, carries with it UNREALISTIC EXPECTATIONS.
We heap all of our hope on a Season only to find that things didn’t materialize LIKE we hoped… WHEN we hoped, and now we are mired in disappointment
The problem is not the Christmas Season
The problem is that WE HEAP THE HOPE OF HUMANITY onto the season of Christmas
But the Christmas season is only a shadow, and it can’t hold up
Don’t settle for the shadow of the season, there is SOMEONE BETTER, the Savior of Christmas: JESUS the MESSIAH
My Hope this Advent
You and your family will lean into Jesus this Christmas
That you will turn your heart toward something better than the shadows of the Christmas season – to stay focused on the Savior of the Season, Jesus Christ
That’s Why We Are Celebrating Advent
- It’s far more than a celebration of an historic moment 2,000 years ago.
- In Advent we LOOK BEHIND us (to the promises completed in full in XJ)
- BUT ALSO we LOOK FORWARD (to who Jesus is and His to return for us)
The Big Idea Last Week
Jesus is better than the shadow because HE HAS DRAWN NEAR TO YOU
- To give you His grace
- To make Himself known to you
When a relationship is broken, someone has to make the first move toward the other person to bring about reconciliation – God moved toward you even when you wouldn’t move toward Him
This Week (MIM)
Jesus is Better than the shadow because HE IS THE SAVING KING
We have all sorts of False Kings in our lives
If we are honest with ourselves, we a tendency to elevate unworthy things to a position of power and authority… to the position of King… in our lives
We GIVE authority, power, priority to created things that always fall short of being able to ultimately deliver
This is what the Psalmist is saying in Ps 115
These kings that we fashion cannot speak, see, hear, feel, walk
They are helpless to you,
False Kings will leave you HELPLESS
The Season of Christmas is no help to you, but the King of Christmas, He can Save You
Some of you may be thinking:
“I’m already saved. I don’t need this message”
You’re cutting the power of X short!
Jesus has saved you BUT HE IS ALSO SAVING YOU… delivering you from the shadows into His presence
Jesus is the ONLY SAVING KING
So what does God reveal to Mary? “Mary, I have chosen you to bear a son, the Messiah, who will change the world”
v31-32a: Jesus Saves COMPLETELY
31 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. 32 “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High…
The name Jesus
- Iēsous (yay-soos) which is the equivalent of the Hebrew name Yeshua which is the name Joshua
- At this point in history, Iēsous was a fairly common, ordinary name
- Many little boys were named Iēsous in honor of the Yeshua of the OT
- Joshua — whose name means Savior/Salvation comes from the Lord — was the one who led the Israelites from their exile in the wilderness into the Promised Land
- Moses dies and the leadership of the Israelites is passed to Joshua, son of Nun, leader of Israel’s military forces (Exodus 17:8) and Moses’ personal assistant (Exodus 33:11; Joshua 1:1).
- After the grief of Moses death passes, the excitement starts to build: the Lord is about to fulfill his centuries-old promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, a homeland in which to serve God without fear in holiness and righteousness all their days (Luke 1:73–75).
- God parts the Jordan and the Israelites pass the Ark of the Covenant as they walk into the Promised Land
- Canaan, the Promised Land is full of enemies and haters of God.
- They camp in Gilgal, then the conquest begins.
- Jericho falls in Joshua 6.
- Then after a brief setback due to the disobedience of Achan, in chapter 7, Ai is captured.
- Then Joshua subdues all the southern part of Canaan in Joshua 9–10, and all the northern part in Joshua 11.
- In chapters 13–21, the land is parceled out to the tribes of Israel.
- The climax comes in Joshua 21:43, 45 with these words:
So the Lord gave Israel all the land which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they possessed it and lived in it… Not one of the good promises which the Lord had made to the house of Israel failed; all came to pass.
- But there are premonitions of trouble ahead because there were remnants of the godless nations still in Canaan, and Joshua had to warn the people before he died:
“Take good heed to yourselves, therefore, to love the Lord your God. For if you turn back and join the remnant of these nations left here among you, . . . know assuredly that God will not continue to drive out these nations before you” (Joshua 23:11–13).
- Joshua of the OT was a only a shadow of Jesus Christ
- the baby in Mary’s womb will be a better Savior than Joshua
- THIS IS NO ORDINARY JOSHUA (v32a, “great”) … This is NO ORDINARY SON (v32a, “the son of the Most High”)
- This is the Son of God who will be the Savior/Deliverer of all of humanity
- This Son, this Jesus, will be a better Savior than Joshua because
- He is not merely delivering the Israelites into a Promised Land where toil, heart-ache and enemies still remain
- Rather HE IS DELIVERING HUMANITY from toil, heartache, and man’s greatest enemy death FOREVER
Jesus Saves Completely
1.) Jesus saves you from the GUILT of sin, by cleansing you in His own atoning blood.
2.) Jesus saves you from the DOMINION of sin by putting in your heart His sanctifying Spirit.
3.) Jesus saves you from the PRESENCE of sin, when He takes you out of this world to rest with Him.
4.) Jesus will save you from ALL THE CONSEQUENCES of sin, when He gives you a glorious body at the last day.[i]
Not only does Jesus save Completely
vv32b-33: Jesus is King CURRENTLY
At these very words from God, Mary’s heart – the heart of a little Jewish girl -must have skipped a beat with excitement
Her heart would have been pulled to Isa 9:6-7
6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;
And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
7 There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace,
On the throne of David and over his kingdom,
To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness
From then on and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.
Jesus rules right now!
Not out to lunch… not away from His desk
Never a moment Jesus is not King
Never a moment that goes unnoticed
- He cries with the burdened
- He heals the broken
- He comforts the heavy heart
- He corrects the wayward heart
- He NEVER STOPS DRAWING people to Himself
- He NEVER STOPS DEMANDING your surrender
Jesus, the only Saving King Demands your full SURRENDER
Not even at the announcement of His coming is
JESUS’ SAVIORSHIP and KINGSHIP SEPARATED
King Jesus saves. No other king will do
- Submit to the HS to search your heart for false kings
- Know that Jesus saves completely… there is nothing to hold back from Him
- Surrender to Jesus the Messiah… Jesus the Saving King
surrender your Christmas season to Him
- Rest in Him
There is no rest with false kings/shadows
When we heap our hope onto a shadow, the shadow cannot hold our hope and our hope falls.
So we have to pick it up again.
And we cast our hope onto another shadow, and again the shadow cannot hold our hope.
This time it falls and it breaks
So we have to pick up the pieces and carry it again.
…and so on…
Only King Jesus can bring you rest. The rest your heart longs for. Only King Jesus.
Only King Jesus saves.
[i] J.C. Ryle, What Does the Name Jesus Mean? http://www.jesus.org/is-jesus-god/names-of-jesus/what-does-the-name-jesus-mean.html