총 게시물 453건, 최근 2 건

'It is true that the Lord had come down to earth'

글쓴이 : 관리자 날짜 : 2017-12-21 (목) 07:34 조회 : 205
설교일 : 2017.12.17
설교자 : Rev. Bae
본문말씀 : Luke 2:1-14

December 17, 2017

 

‘It is true that the Lord had come down to earth’

Luke 2:1-14

 

Rev. Se Jin Bae’s Sermon at the KUMC of Metro Detroit

 

 

I remember it was 5 years ago and some of you may remember it also. December 21, 2012 was supposed to be the last day of the world and there were all kinds of rumors floating around at that time.

 

It was all because of the Mayan calendar, as the ancient calendar of Mayan culture was to end on December 21, 2012, and people believed that was going to be the last day, but as we all know now, the world didn’t end on that day.

 

Perhaps you are aware of the ‘Doomsday Clock’which was invented by the atomic scientists at the University of Chicago in 1947 to warn the mankind about the approach of the last day for earth due to the danger associated with the nuclear power.

 

On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of this atomic clock, the atomic scientists in U.S. announced in their magazine, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, that the last day would come sooner than previously predicted by 23 hours 57 minutes 30 seconds, because of the current U.S. President Donald Trump.

 

I know that recently more people are interested in the eschatology and Doomsday in the light of some serious issues involving the nuclear weapons, but we do not care very much about their discussion about the end of the world. We are convinced that only God knows the end of the world, which will happen at the time of the Lord’s second coming.

 

But one thing we have to remember is that we are getting closer to the time when our Lord will return, even if we don’t care about the exact time of the end of the world. Today is the third Sunday of the Advent season, and the next Sunday is the Christmas Sunday, so this is a good time to think about the second coming of Jesus Christ

 

When I was a seminary student, I used to like to read the writings by Anselm of Canterbury who lived in 11th century during the medieval times. We all know that during the medieval times in Europe, the Christian churches ruled the people in all areas and God of the Bible was at the center of their lives. Consequently, the nature of the Christianity was changed and the churches became corrupt due to having too much power.

 

But during the medieval times, there was one hot topic among the clergy and it was to prove the existence of God. In other words, even while their world was ruled by the churches, there were some who argued if there were enough proof of God’s existence.

 

It is hard for us to imagine that there were arguments about the existence of God in the medieval Europe, even though their lives were revolving around God during this ‘Dark Ages’.

 

The need for proving the existence of God came from their zeal for evangelism during the medieval times. Although the monarchs’ greed for the new land was the impetus for the explorations of the New World, the Roman Catholic Church also did not hesitate to take advantage of these explorations and jumped in to evangelize the natives of the new land.

 

For their evangelistic efforts, the Roman Catholic Church sought to prove the existence of God scholastically and philosophically, so that they could proclaim the Gospel to the natives who had different culture, traditions and values, and have more success in converting them.

 

Thus, the Christian theology became more developed and defined for evangelism. The Jews didn’t need any more of theology, because they were believers of God from birth and they did not question the existence of God. They believe they are the chosen people of God, therefore, they accept the existence of God without any question.

 

But the rest of the people of the world do not accept God so easily, and they certainly have a hard time accepting one part of the Gospel, the part of the incarnation of Lord Jesus.

 

Perhaps, some of you sitting here may have difficulty in accepting the incarnation of Jesus and also the birth of Jesus by the Virgin Mary. I hope to clear your doubts rationally with today’s sermon.

 

Most of the Gentiles in the world question the reason for Almighty God’s incarnation, and there was one theologian in the medieval times who tried to prove the reason theologically, philosophically and scholastically, and he is the one that I mentioned earlier, Anselm of Canterbury, and his book is ‘Cur Deus Homo?’, which can be translated into ‘Why God became a Man?’

 

Not only questioning the incarnation of the Almighty God, most of the Gentiles have difficulty in believing that the Virgin Mary gave birth to baby Jesus. But we believe that Jesus was born that way, as confessed in our Apostle’s Creed. Let us go over the first part of the Apostle’s Creed.

 

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth,

And in Jesus Christ, His only son our Lord,

Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary.

 

Because of our strong faith, we accept the Apostles’ Creed without any questions. But the unbelievers of the world cannot accept this particular part of the birth of Jesus.

 

It must have been very difficult for the early Christians to accept and believe that an unmarried virgin gave birth to baby Jesus. Who do you think have the most difficulty in believing the virgin giving birth?

 

We think the doctors, especially the obstetricians, may have the most difficulty with the issue of a virgin giving birth. But today’s passage describing the birth of Jesus in detail was written by Luke.

 

Now, who was Luke?

First, he was a Gentile, and most Bible scholars agree that he was a Greek. He was not a Jew and didn’t believe in God from birth.

Second, he was a doctor. In Colossians 4:14, Paul mentioned Luke, as follows.

 

Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings.

 

Apostle Paul makes it clear that Luke was a doctor who should be the expert on the limitations of our body from birth to death. But Luke begins the gospel of Luke with the accounts of a barren woman becoming pregnant and a virgin becoming pregnant without having any relationship with a man. Let us read Luke 1:1-4 together.

 

1.  Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us,

2.  just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the Word.

3.  Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus,

4.  so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.

 

Dear congregation, Luke, a Gentile and a doctor, was writing to a Gentile man of power, and he wrote some unbelievable accounts in chapters 1-2.

 

Luke was eager to write down the story of Lord Jesus’ birth to prove it to be true, despite of his own experiences as a doctor.

 

He begins his gospel with the story of Mary’s cousin Elizabeth’s pregnancy and then the pregnancy of Virgin Mary who had been pledged to marry Joseph, a descendant of David. The angel Gabriel appeared before Virgin Mary to tell her that she would give birth to a son.

 

Luke was writing these accounts at the risk of his own reputation and professional recognition to prove the incarnation of Jesus. In his effort to evangelize, Luke was courageous in asserting what he believed.

 

Right after today’s passage, in Luke 2:15-18, the shepherds were very courageous also.

 

15.  When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16.  So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.

17.  When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child,

18.  and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.

 

These shepherds went to verify the facts and then they spread the good news to others.

 

Luke also wanted to verify the birth of Jesus Christ in the beginning of his gospel of Luke, and then he spread the good news about Messiah to others. How about you? Are you willing to proclaim courageously that Jesus is our Messiah?

 

The birth of Jesus must have been such a great joy to the angels that they came in a hurry to announce the birth of Messiah and the Incarnation. Let us read verse 10 of today’s passage.

 

10.  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.”

 

The angels said they were bringing ‘good news of great joy’ to all the people.

 

11.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord.

 

The angels said that a Savior was born to us, to save us from sins and to give us the eternal life. He is Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

 

He was in nature the same as God, but lowered Himself and came down as the incarnate Messiah to save you and me. He has no fault or blemish, but had to bear the cross for our sake. Now, by believing in Him, anyone can be saved.

 

“For God so loved this world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

 

“Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved – you and your household.”

 

Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

 

If we believe that Lord Jesus came down to earth to save us, we will be saved. That is the reason Lord Jesus is our hope, our true peace and our great joy.

 

In verse 14 of today’s passage, a great company of heavenly host appeared with the angel and said,

 

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom His favor rests.”

 

Christmas is not just an occasion for you to exchange gifts with those dear to you and be merry, but an occasion to meditate upon the true meaning of the birth of Jesus and what we should do as Christians. On this third Sunday of the Advent season, we are happily looking forward to the great joy of the birth of Christ, just like the angels and the shepherds did. May this Christmas bring you the true joy of celebrating the birth of Christ!

 

 


   

총 게시물 453건, 최근 2 건
번호 설교일              제목 본문말씀 설교자
453 2018.04.15  Flowers that bloom, even as shaking in the wind Revelation 3:7-13 Rev. Kwon
452 2018.04.15  흔들리며 피는 꽃 요한계시록 3장 7~13절 권태홍 목사
451 2018.04.08  The Last Stand of David 1 Kings 1:1-4 Rev. Taegyu Shin
450 2018.04.08  다윗의 마지막 모습 열왕기상 1장 1~4절 신태규 목사
449 2018.04.01  "Come and have breakfast" John 21:1-14 Rev. K.L. Shin
448 2018.04.01  와서 아침을 먹어라 요한복음 21장 1~14절 신경림 목사
447 2018.03.18  'When there is no way out, the heaven opens' Ezekiel 1:1-3 Rev. Bae
446 2018.03.18  길이 없을 때, 하늘이 열립니다. 에스겔 1:1~3 배세진 목사
445 2018.03.11  예기치 못한 선물 출애굽기 2:1-10 신경림 목사
444 2018.03.11  'An unexpected gift' Exodus 2:1-10 Rev. K.L. Shin
443 2018.03.04  노아는 나침반이 필요했을까? 창세기 9:1-17 신경림 목사
442 2018.03.04  Did Noah need a compass? Genesis 9:1-17 Rev. K.L. Shin
441 2018.02.25  Why? John 11:17-35 Rev. K.L. Shin
440 2018.02.25  왜? 요 11:17~35 신경림 목사
439 2018.02.18  Let us suffer the losses gladly! Luke 10:1-20 Rev. K.L. Shin
 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  다음  맨끝

제목 : Flowers that bloom, even as shaking in the wind
설교일 : 2018.04.15
본문말씀 : Revelation 3:7-13
설교자 : Rev. Kwon

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