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Julotta 2017 Final

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Merry Christmas … Julotta is a wonderful tradition that we celebrate on Christmas morning. I am personally grateful that the time was changed to 7:00am. I am told that one year one of the pastor didn’t arrive for the service and one of the elders had to come over to the parsonage and wake him up... so I am trying to keep my record clean… and so far, so good.
conflict illustration
How many of you love Christmas lights?
Over the past decade or so there have been two families that have been competing for the Guinness world Record for the most lights to grace their homes ....
The Richard Family are from Australia and they kept the retina-scorching record from 2001-11 with and astounding 331,038 bulbs, to be exact.
Then, in 2012, Tim Gay and his family from, New York— decorated their house with 346,283 lights. (Many of those were, to add tinsel to injury, synchronized to music.)
The Richards couldn't stand to be losers so they upped the ante by decorating their house with more than 502,165 lights. (This equates to more than 29 miles of wire.)
Now the Tim Gay’s family wouldn’t beat so the following year they got their revenge They covered their own house—and, crucially, its grounds—with a display that involves 601,736 lights.
The whole thing took roughly two months to build. It spans two acres. It also involves much more than lights: It includes more than 200 songs, including both top-40 hits and traditional holiday songs...
Somehow I think the purpose of Christmas is getting lost in this feud!
Preposition
There is this theme of light that runs through the scriptures. The OT is prophetic and is looking forward Light coming in the messianic expectation.…you see it in the writings of Isaiah tells us that light was coming to pierce the darkness.
Isaiah 9:1–2 ESV
1 But there will be no gloom for her who was in anguish. In the former time he brought into contempt the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the latter time he has made glorious the way of the sea, the land beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the nations. 2 The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shone.
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Exegesis
Isaiah writes this about 700 years before Christ… Israel has gone through a long period of darkness being captives of Babylon Syria and the Assyrians..
The northern tribe of Israel are the very ones who rejected David’s dynasty and chased after foreign idols… yet Isaiah tells us that it is into this very place that God was going to shed his light and demonstrate his grace. … we live in a world that is influenced by darkness…In many places the message of Christ is rejected.
but Christmas light gives us hope…the hope of Christ light is that he shines brightest in dark places… it’s amazing you can be 30 000 feet up in an airplane and you can see one light shining.
Isaiah’s message says those in darkness have seen light… it is speaking about Dawn. time before fulfillment.
The significance joulotta is arriving at the church at dawn… that period between light an darkness but we leave this morning in the light. This is what is happening in our text.
Resolution of Conflict
The fulfillment of Isaiah prophecy is found in the book of When Jesus begins his ministry in Galilee.. ​
Matthew 4:12–14 ESV
12 Now when he heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew into Galilee. 13 And leaving Nazareth he went and lived in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali, 14 so that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:
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Matthew 4:17 ESV
From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
Now when he heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew into Galilee. And leaving Nazareth he went and lived in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali, so that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:
17 From that time Je
After John the baptist is arrested… Jesus begins his earthly ministry and begins Galilee teaching, preaching and bringing healing.. The “light” that Isaiah promised was the Light of the Word of God, as well as the Light of His perfect life and compassionate ministry.. it is the ministry of Jesus that is going to bring light…
Jesus gives us this great promise…
John 8:12 ESV
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
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Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
John tells us that Jesus brings light into our lives… because Jesus is light…. Whoever follows him will no longer live in darkness.
Illustration then Application
Have you ever wondered what would happen if the lost the Sun in our Solar system?
Without the Sun's warmth, Earth would quickly become a much colder place. , scientists estimate that the average global surface temperature would drop below 0º F within a week or so. Most of us have lived through temperatures around 0…. When we lived in Maine we had temperatures around 20 below…that’s really cold
The problem is that the temperature would continue to drop steadily. Within a year, the average global surface temperature could dip well below -100º F! By that time, the top layers of the oceans of the world would have frozen over. And eventually every living organism would eventually die… everything in creation depends upon the sun… This is what John is saying that whoever has Christ has the light of life.
Jesus is the Great light… the true light that will sustain us that will bring us hope, Peace, Joy and love…
The problem today is that there are competing lights.... there are competing for our time… there are lights competing… for our attention… So we end up stinging up our 10 lights or our 600 000 lights and think that....we can get by…
The problem is that We will never be satisfied with artificial light.....it will never be enough…
The Good news of Christmas is that True light came 2000 years ago born in a manger…
Challenge​
John 1:9–13 ESV
9 The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
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The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
John gets past the pageantry and sentiment of Christmas and get to the point… there are those who will reject Christ… but then there will be those who embrace the light of Christ… and He will dispel darkness…those who receive the light he given the right of sonship…
When we Embrace Christ ..He will bring clarity and illumination into your life…’
No longer struggling to set up our own lights...
This morning there are going to be gifts under your tree.... But Christ is the great Gift of Christmas...is Christ himself…
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