A Thrill of Hope

A Thrill of Hope

Good morning everyone merry christmas, we’re so excited to have you all here to get to worship. Um and just praise um our God together. Um on this christmas morning we’re gonna do something a little bit different this morning. I’m going to read through our passage for the day. So if everyone would please stand if you are able to um as we read um our christmas passage will be in Isaiah 53. So if you would open there with me and read along Isaiah 53 starting in verse one, who has believed what he has heard from us and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed for he grew up before him like a young plant and like a root out of dry ground. He had no form or majesty that we should look at him and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief and as one from whom men hid their faces, he was despised and we esteemed him not surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows yet we esteemed him stricken smitten by God and afflicted, but he was pierced for our transgressions. He was crushed for our iniquities upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace and with his wounds we are healed all we like sheep have gone astray. We have turned everyone to his own way and the Lord has lain on him, the iniquity of us all, he was oppressed and he was afflicted yet he opened not his mouth like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before it shears is silent. So he opened not his mouth by oppression and judgment. He was taken away. And as for his generation who considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people. And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death. Although he had done no violence and there was no deceit in his mouth. Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him. He had to, he has put him to grief when his soul makes an offering for guilt. He shall see his offspring. He shall prolong his days. The will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand, out of the anguish of his soul, he shall see and be satisfied by his knowledge, shall the righteous one. My servant make many to be accounted righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong, because he poured out his soul to death and was numbered with the transgressors. Yet he bore the sins of many, and makes intercession for the transgressors, and that is the word of God y’all may be seated. Thank you Chloe Amen merry christmas church. Good morning, merry christmas show of hands! Did anyone spouse buy them a car this morning of a bow carbo, anyone no one, my car didn’t start this morning, had to jump it. I was, I was like, come on Annie, let’s see what happens, frozen, frozen battery. So it was great parents, don’t mind your kids this morning. Uh, we’re not worried about them. Uh, christmas is about kids and babies and noise and family and commotion. So it’s, it’s, it’s not a problem. Don’t worry about it. I, I appreciate kids, I appreciate your kids. Um, let me pray for our time. Is that okay Lord, I thank you for this morning. Thank you for the word of God in Isaiah 53 that we’re gonna look at today. I thank you for the power of the Word of God. I ask that the power of God would go out through the word of God Lord and convict and instruct and encourage the people of God this morning. Uh, this cold morning outside I prayed the word of God would be warm in our hearts. We have an affection for our brothers and sisters beside us and you’d use today in a mighty way in our lives. We just thank you for christmas, Thank you for today. Thank you for this church. Thank you for this passage. We can look at today. We just commit this time to you in jesus name Amen, I named this passage a thrill of hope. I was thinking about the anticipation, the wonder, the twinkle of you know of an excitement that is in kid’s eyes this time of year. It’s fun to think about christmas and process what christ has done through the eyes of a child. We have four young kids in our home and I want to start off of addressing a question that one of them asked me last week. They said dad, aren’t you one of the pastors, why are we having church on christmas morning? And I didn’t have a good answer. I I froze at dinner time and I just kind of blank stared my my kid and I thought, well let’s let’s address that question as a church. Why are we here as a church? Um, it’s natural for kids to have their eyes on themselves, their needs, their wants, their desires. That’s just a developmental indicator, indicator of your brain as it’s developing to focus from yourself and being very narcissistic to thinking of others and other people. It’s just part of your attention from self word focus to others focused. Um, an adult version of this is consumerism, which is a word that’s overused as a, as a, as an american society. We probably call this comfort culture. It’s where adults don’t grow out of that self centered view. Um they keep their eyes are prioritizing themselves and their needs and their wants, but why are we here? Why are we here? We’re not here to hear about these and those dues and don’t we’re not here to feel morally superior than other people. Why are we here as a sunday morning as they gathered people to look at God’s word. Why are we here? I propose to you, we’re here because we’re people that worship, we cannot help but worship kids worship themselves and whatever is under that tree at home, adults worship themselves and whether it’s parked in the driveway, we worship ourselves. So we’re so prone to worshiping ourselves as people and so why are we here? We’re here to get our eyes off ourselves and our eyes on christ and worshiping christ as christians, going to church when it’s convenient to worship God is good and holy and going to church when it’s inconvenient to worship is good and holy because all are worshiping this morning, all over the city of Lincoln and it’s very right and healthy for you to have your eyes off yourself onto the best thing you can look at this morning. The best gift for all of us which is christ. The point of christian worship is to focus our mind on christ and every sunday we gather as people we gather, we remind ourselves that we are worshipers and we focus our thoughts and our affections on God off of ourselves, our needs, our wants onto God, our culture is easily distracted any season, especially this season. Our culture is wrapped up in the wonder the work, the hustle of the holiday season is very appropriate for a mature believer to stop, settle their mind, take a short little bit of their day and think and focus on their thoughts on christ christians have been doing this for centuries, Augustine of hippo a theologian That lived and died in 430 A. D. said this about Christmas time, he said this he was created of a of a mother whom he created, he was carried by hands, who he formed, he cried in the manger in wordless, wordless infancy. He the word without whom all human eloquence is mute and J. I. Packer who died in the year 2020 and evangel evangelistic author and theologian wrote this. The Almighty appeared on earth as a helpless baby born needing to be fed, changed and taught to talk like any other child. The more you think about it, the more staggering. It gets nothing in fiction is so fantastic as this truth of the incarnation of christ many women. This is this is this incarnation of christ christ joining us and being with us as people and bodily form, not just the humility of being a baby. Just the humility of being a person christ living and walking among us and his entrance on the scene of mankind has been pondered and thought about and worshiped by by men and women for centuries. This is very appropriate for us to gather and focus our thoughts on christ the whole bible is about christ. If you if you pick up your bible and you think about what is this book about the old testament. This part of your bible is about the anticipation of christ the gospels, Matthew, Mark luke and john about the incarnation of christ, the epistles about the explanation of christ. And then the very last book, the revelation is about the glorification of christ. This whole book, your whole bible, the central theme of your entire bible is christ and so how it came to the scenes. A man is stunning. Isaiah 53 is a stunning testimony about christ, the gospels is known as the Divinely inspired A book that tells us about jesus Isaiah. 53 scholars say is one of the first gospels. It’s a divinely inspired book that tells us about jesus Isaiah said 53 is the scholars say sufficient. You can look at Isaiah 53 have a sufficient explanation of the gospel to save sinners. There’s famous puritan preachers who preached 100 and 50 some sermons on this one chapter alone, I will not preach 150 sermons, I’ll not preach 100 50 minutes. I will keep it short. Kids raise your hand. Kids, if you’ve not opened your presents yet this morning, can you raise your hands for me. Kids, kids who have not opened their presents yet this morning. Hang in there, kids, hang in there, this is a divinely inspired text that has many scholars have spoken on many christian mountains, you know, it’s the Mount Everest of the bible. Scholars say it’s the most central, deepest and loftiest that scriptures ever attained. Martin Luther says that all people should memorize Isaiah 53 We find a comprehensive description of the cross in this one chapter we see a stunning prediction of a very complex and precise um life that Christ lived. This has written 700 years before Christ injured this scene. This chapter, Isaiah 53 has written 700 years before Jesus was born 700 years earlier. As this book was written, there’s no chapter with its equal in the new testament that is sourced has highly as this chapter, every single new testament, writer sources, Isaiah 53 when they want to better understand who christ is, this is a very key part of your bible and I’m not being into numbers and chapter breakouts, but I found this amazing scholars say that there’s out of the chapters in the whole book of Isaiah 39 focus on God’s judgment and 27 focus on God’s salvation. They’re like, okay, which perfectly marries the books in the bible. There’s nine chapters that focus on the salvation of Israel nine chapters that focus on the salvation of sinners and there’s nine chapters that focus on the salvation of the universe and the middle chapter on those salvation on sinners. The middle verse in Isaiah 53 verse six, summarizes the entire book of Isaiah and the entire bible all we like sheep have gone astray. We have turned everyone to his own way, the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. The main idea of the book of Isaiah 53 and the whole purpose of the whole Bible is how can sinners be made right with God? Every single religion on the planet attempts to answer this question. How can people be made right with God? How can you be made right with God? The Book of Isaiah 53, this chapter robustly answers that question. Its audience is a future. People looking back at the, at seeing what happened to christ and what christ has done for his people. You see this elsewhere in Zechariah 12 10 through 12 through 13 1 when it says they look on him whom they pierced it is the people looking back at what has happened, He was, he had, he grew, he bore he was his own way. They’re looking back it’s an audience looking back at what has happened with christ. If you look over page 3 56 in the house bibles, it is people looking back at what has happened to christ. So there’s there’s several sections, I’d like to give you some some some handling on how to handle this passage, Isaiah 53, the first three verses, we can group them together. The first three verses, we see we see a scorned Savior. They’re looking on him before their salvation a scorned savior who has believed what he has heard from us and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? They have a scorned view of their savior. They do not view him like believers. They view him as unbelievers. How can people, people will be right with God. These people had a score and a view of their savior. There was grief over those who had missed christ in these first three verses, Jesus. Every time he walked into a room or walked into the city, he banished illness from Israel during his duration was three years of ministry. He healed every imaginable disease. He fed masses. He raised the dead, he cast out demons. He had control over nature. Jesus was just showing his authority over the natural, the unnatural, the spiritual, the seen and the unseen realm of Israel. We’ve been looking at that as a church through the book of luke the last few years. You see in their phrase, the arm of the Lord, the Arm of the Lord. It’s an expression of divine power. The people of Israel saw everything Jesus did everything he said, all the signs and wonders and miracles and all of his authority flex on all of the controlling forces of humanity and they missed him. They scorned their savior. They missed it. Why did they reject him? Why did they miss it? And why were they scorning their savior. Look at Verse two, for he grew up before him like a young plants and like a root out of dry ground. He had no form of beauty that we should look at him and no beauty that we should desire him. They were looking for someone to beat back the occupation of Rome. They were looking for a new world order and earth shaker. They’re looking for a leader of a rebellion, a political leader of warrior king. And that is not the theme of christ’s First Coming. That’s the theme of christ’s second coming advent. One is a meek and mild savior who came here to seek and save the loss advent to is christ coming as a warrior king to completely dismantle the whole entire power structure of this entire world. The roman occupation, government publicly shamed christ. He grew up from a hick town called Nazareth. For people there were associated uneducated, impoverished with a drawl. They were known as very poor, illiterate people in the city of Nazareth. He was a scorned savior. Verse three. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrow, acquainted of grief and of one of whom men hide their faces. He was, he was despised and we esteemed him not, he was held, this was held in total contempt by his culture. He’s found himself of non influential fishermen. These people were not prestigious, wealthier, thought highly of these fishermen were thought very lowly of. He had no influential friends and followers know nothing trending on social media. He’s famous. He was famous. He had no famous pedigree or influential wealthy family he came from even as entering the scenes of mankind was missed. He was raised by poor, illiterate people. His, his scandal attached to his birth story, the way he was born, the place he was born just in poverty and not even in a, not even a house of brick and mortar, but out in a, in a shed bar and cave thing. Even the people that found him, shepherds were considered like riff raft. Unl a jit emit witnesses in court, shepherds were considered like sketchy conman people that couldn’t hold down a normal 9 to 5 job got sent out to watch animals. Shepherds were not prestigious people. They were, they were the lowest of the people, jewish leaders shamed christ jewish leaders called him the hanged one, the legitimate child, let his name be blotted out. We esteemed him, not jesus was canceled by his culture. Jesus was rejected by his friends and family. Jesus was rejected by the people of influence and prestige in his world. For years, the jewish rabbis would not read this passage of their bible in the synagogues because it screams out jesus christ. The entire chapter was omitted for years. Post jesus death. It reminds me of that song we sang O holy Night when it first was written, it was written in a very contentious part of our american society and when it first came out, the third stand that was emitted by a majority of churches in the south truly, he taught us to love one another. His law is love and his gospel is peace chains shall he break? For the slave is our brother and in his name all oppression shall cease your like. That has nothing to do with christmas, but everything to do with what was happening in society at this time. This was written jewish rabbis avoided and admitted this passage of the bible after christ’s death, he was a scorned savior. He was despised and rejected by men. A man of sorrows acquainted with grief. He was despised. If you find yourself engulfed with sorrow and grief this christmas morning, knowing that I know that you have a savior, that is empathy and sympathy and you can speak with with your sorrow and grief of authority because he also lived a rejected despised life, Jesus says the people come to me who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest, take my yoke upon yourself and learn from me for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find for your souls, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light, Jesus was a scorned savior. He was a man that was accustomed to a hard life an impoverished life a rejected life. This is how people view christ pre salvation and then verses four through nine, we see a substitute savior. We see a view of him in the hour of our salvation. The bible talks about substitution substitution. Eri Sacrificial atonement, how christ satisfied God’s law. He took the wrath of God the punishment of God that we deserved. God took and poured it out on the life of jesus christ when he hung on the cross and God gave grace to humble centers and punished his perfect son. Surely he was born on griefs, he carried our sorrows. Yet we esteemed him stricken spending by God and afflicted but he was pierced for our transgressions. He was crushed for our inequities and upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace and with his wounds we are healed, jesus body was brutally dismantled and brutally tortured and everyone in Israel saw what happened to christ on this peak traffic holiday season when he was crucified all we like sheep have gone a strain. We have turned everyone to his own way and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was pierced, he was crushed, he was scourged and this is the perceptive of all who follow christ. They shift from being a scorned savior to uh a substitute savior. They get that transaction that happened on the cross because in this culture at this time the jews would come together, they would confess their sins onto animals and those animals would be sacrificed and the wrath of God. We put onto that sacrificial animal and that animal would be crushed and the Wrath of God would go on to that animal and not them. And the blood of the animal spilt. Spilt was a substitution. Every example of what would future coming. The perfect messiah, The perfect sacrifice would come and right away the sins of the whole world. The jewish cultures get that. We have probably not seen an animal sacrifice or killed the last couple of weeks. So we have to realize that this is written to a different audience, a jewish audience when they saw a pierce chastised crushed savior, there’s a substitute that happened on the cross Verse six talks about sheep string. My father raised sheep. He still has sheep sheep string. We have to build some pretty strong fences because sheep have a way of just wandering off and dying. I think the words were chosen carefully in the bible. Even careful, more careful than any pastor in the city of Lincoln are choosing words this morning, sheep strength. It’s what sheep do. The whole concept that I’m only human human sin, it’s what humans do and humans as we sin. We earn the punishment in the wrath of God when I do wrong things when I sin, when I say things I shouldn’t say when I do things I shouldn’t do. When I don’t say things, I should say when I don’t do things I should do. Those are called since I’ve lied, I’ve cheated. I’ve steeled you’ve lied. You’ve cheated. You steal you dishonor your parents, you’ve coveted that car in the parking lot of your neighbor’s house. You’ve covered it. We’ve you get we are sinners and we are building up wrath and punishment and christ came and he lived the perfect life as a substitute savior for us. That he could take the place that we rightfully deserved were people. That’s what people do. People send. People violate God. People miss the mark and christ is our savior. That’s what our savior does. He comes and he fills that void and pays that wrath that we owe Second Corinthians 5 21 says we implore you on behalf of Christ to be reconciled to God for our sake. He made him to be sin. Who knew no sin that in him we might become the righteousness of God. Just an eternal infinite person took the full wrath of God of all the men and women on this planet to pay the price for sins for eternity. He’s your substitute savior. If you you receive that gift, that substitute vs 10 and 11 these verses talk about a satisfied savior. It’s a view of him on their hour of salvation. How christ shall see and be satisfied, jesus job is to justify the wicked and jesus excellent as his work at declaring wicked people righteous. It is the work of God to redeem wicked men and women. We see christ as a satisfied savior. verses 10 and 11 verses 12, we see a supreme savior, a view of him with a glorified God and exalted Emmanuel worshiping. Why does this matter? How can how can a sinner be made right with God? Why does this matter on christmas morning we all have an opportunity to unwrap the gift of a christ who was scorned, who has substituted our place of punishment for us, Who’s fully satisfied the wrath of God and is satisfied with his work of saving us and who was a supreme savior, A sovereign savior. Who knows how to save people? Why does christmas morning happen? And why does it matter? Because at christmas morning christ entered the scene of mankind, Isaiah 7 14 says therefore the Lord will give you a sign and behold the virgin shall conceive and bear a son and he shall call his name immanuel, which means God with us. But God is not gonna be with everyone universally God is only with those who have received this gift as savior, who has a moment in their life where they confess that they are sinners, they scorned their savior and they think they’re if they don’t have christ as a substitute for their sins, they are the subsidy for their sins and they make that shift from them crawling off the altar of a non perfect center to letting a perfect christ step on the altar and take the wrath of God, Isaiah 96 is four to us, a child is born and to us, a son is given and the government shall be upon his shoulders and his name shall be called Wonderful counselor, almighty God, everlasting father prince of peace. Why does christmas matter? We need christ to save all of us and we can’t miss that. If we miss that, we’ll miss everything. Many women christmas is about christ coming and dying for you. If you, you have to confess your sins, repent and receive him as your savior church. When you see clarity of christ and his motivation for coming, it’s very compelling clarity for christ is key to our change from an unbeliever to a believer from no religious affiliation to one religious affiliation, from an, from an atheist to a theist, from an agnostic to a true believer. When you see christ, it’s incredibly complex, compelling and there’s a compelling picture of christ laid out in Isaiah 53 you see a savior who is on a mission for you, john Charles Wesley wrote a very famous song veiled in flesh. The Godhead see held the incarnate deity pleased as man with him with men to dwell, jesus christ, Emmanuel Amen Yeah, Amen, let’s pray God, thank you for this morning, Thank you for thank you for christmas, thank you for this being a planet that has been visited and I thank you that you’re not done and you’re coming back, I ask that you would just really help us to do business with you this morning. God, we just commit our time to you in jesus name. We pray. Amen.

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