What away to end our Advent series...On Christmas! Our series ends with "Jesus: The Great Light." Our world--and sometimes our own lives--are filled with darkness. There are so many things that we try to substitute for light groping about trying to find our own way. Isaiah prophecies that the people once walked in darkness but now they have seen the great light. Paul exhorts us to walk as children of the light. John tells us that Jesus is the light of the world. What a relief to have the Light in utter darkness.
Jesus is the Son of God. We are in week three of our Advent Series. Today, our special guest speaker, Josh Anderson, explores the correlation between the Old & New Testament proofs that Jesus is, in fact, the Son of God. The challenge will be to not pass over the more familiar stories and doctrines surrounding the identity of Jesus and the Christmas Story.
As we celebrate who Jesus is this Advent, we see that not only is He the Passover Lamb, but He is also the Kinsman-Redeemer. Join us as we journey through the story of Ruth in this sermon, and see the many ways in which Boaz, Ruth's kinsman-redeemer, foreshadows Jesus, the Kinsman-Redeemer of all who believe.
As we begin this season of Advent, our desire as a church is to center this time around Jesus, not materialism, not family outings (although those are often a blast), not vacation time, not leisure time, but Jesus. Today, we make the correlation between the Old Testament sacrificial system of the Passover Lamb with Jesus whom John the Baptist called, "the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world." That should set the stage of our journey toward Christmas.
Today we unfold the final word of Advent in our series, Redeeming Christmas. Joy is the confident expectation that I can be satisfied in Jesus. There is a joy that is deep, satisfying, & perfect. There is a joy that is not swayed my circumstances, my past, others or anxious thoughts. Joy is found in a person. Jesus is the great joy of Luke 2.
Love. Usually when you mention that word, some are tempted to shut down and not pay attention. Just like hope and peace, love is often misconstrued. Love is a supernatural manifestation of the Holy Spirit. If we as Christ followers long to obey God then we demonstrate that belief by showing love to others. The nature of God presses in on us to action.
What in the world brings you peace? In John 14:27, Jesus makes a claim that the peace He offers is different than peace the world has to offer. Today we explore those differences as we come to grips with what biblical peace is.
"Redeeming Christmas" is our Advent series leading all the way up to Christmas. Each week we will be prayerfully breathing new life into some pretty common words that are used around Advent: Hope, Peace, Love, & Joy. This week, we answer the question, "Where do you find hope in a broken world?"