Faithlife Sermons

Advented...now what: God In Us

Advent 2017  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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We are an heir to the reward of Jesus, just as we do the mission of Jesus. He is for us, with us, one of us and in us in order to show the world that God is for with and one of them.

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Scripture Prompt
Galatians 4:4–7 NIV84
But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.
I’ll never forget when our son was born.
I’ll never forget when our son was born.
What do you do with him...
What do you do with him...
Everything was new…everything was different.
Always learning…because the relationship is always changing…it’s the same but it’s always different.
Same thing for the birth of Jesus…he changed everything.
I hope you experience that this Christmas…that you are seeing Jesus differently than you did before.
Well, so that is that. Now we must dismantle the tree, Putting the decorations back into their cardboard boxes – Some have got broken – and carrying them up to the attic. The holly and the mistletoe must be taken down and burnt, And the children got ready for school. There are enough Left-overs to do, warmed-up, for the rest of the week – Not that we have much appetite, having drunk such a lot, Stayed up so late, attempted – quite unsuccessfully – To love all of our relatives, and in general Grossly overestimated our powers. Once again As in previous years we have seen the actual Vision and failed To do more than entertain it as an agreeable Possibility, once again we have sent Him away, Begging though to remain His disobedient servant, The promising child who cannot keep His word for long. The Christmas Feast is already a fading memory, And already the mind begins to be vaguely aware Of an unpleasant whiff of apprehension at the thought Of Lent and Good Friday which cannot, after all, now Be very far off. But, for the time being, here we all are, Back in the moderate Aristotelian city Of darning and the Eight-Fifteen, where Euclid’s geometry And Newton’s mechanics would account for our experience, And the kitchen table exists because I scrub it. It seems to have shrunk during the holidays. The streets Are much narrower than we remembered; we had forgotten The office was as depressing as this. To those who have seen The Child, however dimly, however incredulously, The Time Being is, in a sense, the most trying time of all. For the innocent children who whispered so excitedly Outside the locked door where they knew the presents to be Grew up when it opened. Now, recollecting that moment We can repress the joy, but the guilt remains conscious; Remembering the stable where for once in our lives Everything became a You and nothing was an It.
Through the advent season I have wanted us to appreciate the power of the incarnation, to see
Through the advent season I have wanted us to appreciate the power of the incarnation, to see
From Creation
God is For us
beauty, senses, emotions,
But God is a relational God. He created us to be in relationship with us. We see that how God was with...
Noah
Moses
Daniel
Joshua
Through Mary and the power of the Holy Spirit, God For us, became Immanuel
Through Mary and the power of the Holy Spirit, God For us, became Immanuel
God is With Us.
Still for us as he is with us. But God does things intentionally. His way of being for and with was intentionally special.
…into the neighborhood…grace and truth
God became one of us…
To what end?
Galatians 4:4–7 NIV84
But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.
when we accept that God is For us, that God is with us, and that Jesus came be one of us in order to to save all of us…when we accept that, When we put our trust in that, not our abilities, not our strength, not our smarts, or our work ethic, our politics, our generosity, our compassion…but put our faith in Christ, that God comes into us.
It’s what we mean to be filled with the Holy Spirit. To be born again. But to what end?
God today is the same God of Moses. Some folks read the OT and the NT and conclude that God changed, but he doesn’t change like shifting shadows as James wrote. God in you is the same God in Moses. God in you is the same God in Daniel. God in you is the same God in Jesus. Now we could spend the rest of our lives trying to understand that…or I think a better thing would be to spend the rest of our lives trying to accomplish what God wants to accomplish in us.
This means that, like God, we must be For people, With people, One Of people, so that the DNA of Jesus can be passed through our lives into the lives of others and Jesus will then live In them.
We become disciples that make disciples.
How can we show people we are for them?
After school program
Backpacks
Angel tree
Food Pantry
Prayer boxes
These are quiet....let’s raise the volume.
Not to blow our horn, but to shine light on the need.
When we they see we are for them, they can see God is for them.
How can we be with people?
Addictions help
Single moms
Senior citizens
All sorts of places to get involved in the lives of people.
Dickie talking to a person about need.
They seemed to be friends from long ago. That’s the key to becoming one of…you already are.
Walkers
VFW members
Farmers
Watermen
Carpenters
Teachers
Managers
Owners
Retirees
You already are one of groups of people and as Alex Abrahm wrote
The Holy Spirit is at work in our lives and in theirs! If we really believe that God is For us, With us, One Of us and now In us, and that He is also For, With, One Of, and at work In them, then, when the opportunity arises we simply have to be ready to give a reason for the hope that we have. It’s a circular, repeating process.
and One Of us, and who have Jesus In us, we become For, With, and One Of others who respond to Jesus in our lives. As we serve we witness, and frequently they place their faith in Jesus inviting Jesus to come be In them.
As disciples of Jesus who is For, With and One Of us, and who have Jesus In us, we become For, With, and One Of others who respond to Jesus in our lives. As we serve, we witness, and they are invited to place their faith in Jesus - inviting Jesus to come be In them.
Disciples who make disciples.
You see, God planned it to be a completely natural - an organic you might say - way to live the Christian life…as we live in Christ, he lives in us.
In the coming year we will talk a lot about a clear understanding of what a disciple is. Yes a disciple is a believer in Jesus as Christ. But the Bible teaches that there is much more to it than that.
Dedicated to a church
Stake a claim. Find a church…a people not a building…you can give yourself to…and invest yourself in it.
Hybels “Local church is the hope of the world”
“on this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it”
Spending Time Daily in Bible Reading & Prayer
to know God is to know God’s word and be in a relationship with him.
Elementary school love afairs.
You can’t have a relationship with someone you don’t spend time with.
You may not know how to do this, are you willing to learn?
Building Genuine Relationships with Other Dedicated Believers
A core to our Wesleyan understanding of Christianity…small groups…christian accountability...
Christianity is a relational faith. We grow in groups.
We are too busy.
Leaving something out of the recipe.
It’s in our DNA…even if you don’t practice it…you are leaving something out.
Living a Spirit led life
Doesn’t that happen when we become a Christian?
Yes, and every day.
It’s not so much Asking for it - but Surrendering to it on a regular/daily basis.
That we might be filled in order to be poured out for Him.
Giving of Yourself by Serving or Ministering in the Church
You are gifted to serve.
Survey revealed that for many of us, we don’t know where we are needed.
Trusting God financially
Commit to giving not tipping
Sharing Our Faith
I don’t have the gift of evangelism...
Scripture does not say there is a gift of evangelism…but rather a call to tell others…to invite others.
Failure celebrations
We are going to start talking about these 7 practices as this is the year of Discipleship.
Dedicated to his church
Reading and praying daily
Reading and praying daily
Building relationships with other believers
Living Spirit filled
Building relationships with other believers
Giving ourselves through serving
Living Spirit filled
Giving ourselves through serving
Trusting God financially
Trusting God financially
Sharing our faith
Sharing our faith
Corporate
Private
Generosity
Time
Study
Talent
Generosity
Treasure
Service
Evangelism
Sacrifice
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