Synopsis: When Jesus was born, it was different. Those there at Christmas witnessed the birth of Jesus, they knew they were experiencing something different. They had a little context for the birth they did not know exactly what he would do and how he would do it. But they knew He was different. They had a different frame work they put this birth into, they had a idea of who he would be and they had a clear picture of the character he would live with and lead with. They knew he was born to be a king, but they also knew because of his character this king would be different. They knew he was different from any king this world had seen.
Synopsis: It took about 40 years for the world to know and come to grips with the fact that God had sent a king into the world in the form of Jesus. A king whose kingdom would come in conflict from this world. 40 years after Christ’s birth, in Syria, a term came into use to describe a political movement where Greeks and Romans were swearing allegiance to a brand-new king. He was called a Christos or anointed one. This God king they were reference had been crucified 10 or 12 years before by Rome. And this guy to whom they swore allegiance to was not only a king but a God. But this God king did not require sacrifice. Instead, he came to earth to be the final sacrifice. Not like a good like charm but the sacrifice for sin. He required something other than sacrifice. He required allegiance and obedience. Roman didn’t care who you worshiped but you obeyed Caesar. But that didn’t work in Antioch anymore. And this new understanding of this God king began to take over the world.
Synopsis: On the night of Jesus’ birth, a king had been secreted into the world. A king who would disturb the order of things, a king who would lay down his life for his subjects rather than requiring his subjects to lay down their live for him. A king who would tell his disciple to lay down their lives for one another and if need be, their enemies. He would turn everything upside down, not as a religious figure but as a king. This reality has been lost on us because of what the culture had done to Jesus and what the church has done to Jesus. Jesus didn’t come primarily to forgive. He came to be followed.
Synopsis: It seems as if contentment is harder and harder to find. Moments of joy and peace are few and far between. It seems with COVID, inflation, recession, the personal challenges we face, contentment is harder to find. But the gateway to contentment may be more accessible than you think.
Synopsis: Well, our $25 Gift Challenge is now complete. Now all we need is the accounting of what was done with the original gifts. This will be the Sunday. Each of our families will be invited to come forward and tell us what they did with the gift they were given. What were the challenges? What was the outcome? And what did God teach them along the way. Following their sharing we will look into God’s word to see how we should look at every dollar God entrusts to us.