Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Christ in the OT - Abraham

 I recently read of an old Christian woman whose age began to tell on her memory. She had once known much of the Bible by heart. Eventually only one precious bit stayed with her. “I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I committed unto him against that day.”

By and by part of that slipped its hold, and she would quietly repeat, “That which I have committed unto him.” At last, as she hovered on the borderline between this and the spirit world, her loved ones noticed her lips moving. They bent down to see if she needed anything. She was repeating over and over again to herself the one word of the text, “Him, Him, Him.”

She had lost the whole Bible, but one word. But she had the whole Bible in that one word.

Christ can be found throughout Scripture.  I once heard that you should be able to see Jesus on every page of the Bible and if you don’t you need to read that page once again.

 Last week we began a study to see Christ in the OT.  We spent the service looking at Creation and I believe we saw Him there.  Now many events fill these pages and I encourage you to spend time studying each of them: the relationship between Cain, Able and God; the corruption of Man & the call of Noah; the Flood & the Rainbow; the Descendants of Adam and the Building of Babel.  Yes, in each of these we can see Christ.

 However, this morning I would like to draw your attention to the life of Abram, or Abraham and see Christ.  In the OT there are certain individuals that seem to be magnets for Christ sightings; Abraham is one such person.

For the full message shared on 08-12-2012 at 1st Church of God, Racine, WI go to: Christ in the OT - Abraham

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Christ in the OT - Creation

A while back I was reading in Luke, reviewing the account of the death and resurrection of our Lord, when I came across a verse I’m sure you have read before.  In Luke 24, the doctor tells of two disciples who are traveling to Emmaus after hearing of the witness of Mary and the other women and Peter.  But instead of rejoicing, these men are seemingly depressed.  They are all caught up in the injustice of his trial and subsequent crucifixion.  They had plans for this Jesus; He was going to redeem Israel, release them from the oppression of Rome.

Jesus, the resurrected Son of God, joins them as they travel and we are given just a glimpse of the conversation.

And He said to them, “O foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! “Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?” Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures. Luke 24:25-27
Beginning with Moses He began to teach them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.  I was convicted that I don’t spend enough time in the OT.  Here is this wealth of revelation concerning Jesus and other than reading the Psalms for encouragement I really don’t pay it a lot of attention.  So for the next few weeks I am going to spend some time looking at Christ in the OT.

In the first three chapters in Genesis and I see Christ in Creation, Christ in Relationship with Man, and Christ in the Curse.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. [Gen. 1:1]

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.  All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.  And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. [John 1:1-2, 14] 

“The LORD God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden, and there He placed the man whom He had formed.” [Gen. 2:8]

The man said, “This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.”  For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. [Gen. 2:23-24]

“…between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall crush you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heal.” [Gen. 3:15]

For the full message shared on 08-05-12 at First Church of God, Racine, WI go to:
Christ in the OT: Creation

Declaration of Dependence: Pursuing Happiness

"All men are endowed with inalienable right, among which are the Right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." 
         ~ The Declaration of Independence 1776

What was Thomas Jefferson thinking when he penned these words?  What is the Pursuit of Happiness?

For the world, happiness is found in that which brings pleasure.  Lusts of the Flesh, Lusts of the Eyes – these bring happiness of a temporary sort.  But true happiness cannot be found in worldly pleasures.  

My friends, I am sorry to announce true happiness is outside your grasp.  You cannot be happy without looking to the One who paid the price for your happiness and mine.

Our pursuit of happiness is directly linked to our pursuit of God 
and becoming more like Christ every day.

Jesus, some 2000 yrs ago, on a mountainside near the Sea of Galilee, shared eight steps to true joy.  These were written down by Matthew, on of the disciples, in an order inspired by God that offer us a progression to true joy.  This is the Pursuit of Happiness and our happiness (or joy) is Dependent on God.

For the full message shared on 07-29-12 at First Church of God, Racine, WI go to:
Declaration of Dependence: Pursuing Happiness

Ask yourself: On whom am I depending?  The following song was written and sung by my dear friend, Kate Anderson. <Video pending>