ONALASKA FIRST CHURCH OF GOD

"Where Your Experience In Christ, Makes You A Member"

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DECEMBER 2015 SERMONS

 

DECEMBER 6, 2015

 

“THE BEGINNING AND ENDING OF CHRISTMAS”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: ISAIAH 9:1-7 (NIV)

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: Matthew 1:21 (KJV) 

 

   And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

 

INTRO: Do you know the rest of the story of Christmas?

 

   Is Christmas limited to the story of the Baby in the manger?

 

   When did the Christmas story begin and when will it end?

 

   To truly understand the story of Christmas we must first seek to understand the purpose of Christmas and how it affects us.

 

I. THE PURPOSE OF CHRISTMAS

 

NOTE: Christmas is not about giving and receiving gifts, fancy decorations, special foods, or even singing Christmas Carols.

 

   Christmas is all about the redemption of fallen man.

 

Matthew 1:21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

 

   Man was created in the likeness of God.

 

Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

 

   God and man had fellowship in the garden.

 

Genesis 3:8a And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day:

 

   When man realized that he had sinned he sought to hide from God.

Genesis 3:8b and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.

 

   Sin will always break our fellowship with God.

 

Isaiah 59:2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

 

   God does not abandon us in our sins but seeks us out to restore us to fellowship with Him.

 

Genesis 3:9 And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?

 

   Jesus came to restore fallen man to fellowship with God.

 

Luke 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

 

   God gave to fallen man the greatest Christmas Gift that can ever be given.

 

John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

 

II. WHEN DID CHRISTMAS BEGIN?

 

   A. DID IT BEGIN AT JESUS BIRTH IN BETHLEHEM?

 

Luke 2:7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

 

   B. DID IT BEGIN AT ANNUNCIATION TO MARY?

 

Luke 1:26-33 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

 

   C. DID IT BEGIN WITH THE PROPHECIES FOUND IN THE OLD TESTAMENT CONCERNING

        THE COMING OF THE MESSIAH?

 

Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

 

Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

 

   D. IT BEGAN IN THE PRE-ETERNITIES BEFORE THERE WAS

       ANYTHING OR ANYONE BUT GOD.

 

NOTE: When God created man He knew that man would sin and He had already begun the Christmas Story.

 

Ephesians 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

 

·         God promised man’s redemption before the world began.

 

Titus 1:2 In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

 

·         The price for man’s redemption was already paid before the world began.

 

Revelation 13:8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

 

·         The place of Jesus’ birth was chosen before man was created.

 

Micah 5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting

 

III. WHEN WILL CHRISTMAS END?

 

   Because Christmas is not just about the Baby in the manger but is about the redemption of man it will never end as long as we are redeemed.

 

Isaiah 9:7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.  

 

Luke 1:31-33 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

 

DECEMBER 13, 2015

 

JOSEPH: A MAN OF LOVE, FAITH AND COURAGE

 

SCRIPTURE READING: MATTHEW 1:18-25

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: Matthew 1:20

 

   But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

 

INTRO: When we think of the Christmas Story we often think of the Baby Jesus, Mary, the shepherds and the wise men, but how often do we think of Joseph?

 

I. JOSEPH’S LOVE:

 

NOTE: Joseph’s love for Mary put him in a dilemma

 

   Does Joseph react to Mary’s situation with love for her or the pressures of society?

 

Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

 

   We must understand things were much different in Joseph’s day then what we face today.

 

   Joseph sought the answer to his dilemma through prayer.

 

   Our love for God puts us in a dilemma

 

Deuteronomy 6:5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

 

   Throughout our Christian walk we often have to choose between doing things God’s way or the way of man.

 

   What will people say when we take a stand for God?

 

   How will they act towards us?

 

Matthew 10:32-33 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

 

Mark 8:34 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

 

II. JOSEPH’S FAITH:

 

NOTE: Can you imagine what kind of faith it took for Joseph to believe what had taken place

 

   God spoke to Joseph’s predicament

 

·         God referred to Joseph as the son of David

 

   This reminded Joseph that he was in the kingly line

 

   The Messiah was to come through the line of David

 

·         He was told not to fear

 

Psalm 112:7 He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD.

 

·         He was told, Mary’s child was of the Holy Ghost

 

Matthew 1:20-2 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

 

·         Joseph remember the prophecy

 

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

NOTE: Do we have the Joseph kind of faith?

 

·         Do we believe God’s Word about us?

 

1 John 3:1-2 (KJV) Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

 

·         Do we believe what God’s Word says about Himself?

 

Jeremiah 32:27 Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh: is there anything too hard for me?

 

Jeremiah 10:12 He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and hath stretched out the heavens by his discretion.

 

   It is only when we have complete faith in God that we can enjoy true peace

 

Isaiah 26:3-4 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the LORD forever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength:

 

·         Do we love God enough to trust Him?

 

1 John 4:17-18 Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the Day of Judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

 

III. JOSEPH’S COURAGE:

 

Matthew 1:24-25 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:  And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

 

NOTE: No only did Joseph have love for Mary, and faith in God, he also had the courage to stand by Mary in the face of hostile opposition.

 

Psalm 118:6 The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?

 

   For the next twelve plus years, Joseph had to face times of difficulty.

 

Psalm 3:6 (GW) I am not afraid of the tens of thousands who have taken positions against me on all sides.

 

·         Do we have Joseph like courage to stand when things get rough?

 

Matthew 5:10-12 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

 

   If we can’t serve God when things are easy what will happen when things become difficult?

 

Jeremiah 12:5 (NKJV) "If you have run with the footmen, and they have wearied you, Then how can you contend with horses? And if in the land of peace, In which you trusted, they wearied you, Then how will you do in the floodplain of the Jordan?

 

CONCLUSION: As we face these troublesome times, we need the spirit of Joseph, we must have Love for God, faith in His power and wisdom and the courage to stand faithful.

 

DECEMBER 20, 2015

 

THE FIVE FEAR NOTS OF CHRISTMAS

 

SCRIPTURE READING: ISAIAH 43:1-7

 

INTO: The world is living in a time of fear, but those who put their trust in God have no need to fear.

 

I.  FEAR NOT, YOUR PRAYERS HAVE BEEN HEARD.

 

LUKE 1:13 But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John.

 

NOTE:  We have the assurance that God hears our prayers.

 

  1. God has promised to hear us when we pray.

 

ISAIAH 65:24 And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.

 

LUKE 11:9 And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.

 

  1. And if He hears them, we know that He will answer them in the right way.

 

NOTE:  The secret of having our prayers answered the way we want is to pray the prayers that God wants us to pray.

 

ISAIAH 58:9 Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity;

 

JOHN 15:7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

 

I JOHN 5:14-14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:  And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

 

  1. He will hear our prayers in the time of trouble.

 

PSALM 91:15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

 

ISAIAH 41:17 When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.

 

ZECHARIAH 13:9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.

 

II.  FEAR NOT, YOU HAVE FOUND FAVOR WITH GOD.

 

LUKE 1:30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.

 

NOTE:  God loves us as His children.

 

1 JOHN 3:1-2 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.  Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

 

1.  Because we have favor with God He will bless us with His strength.

 

PSALM 89:17 For thou art the glory of their strength: and in thy favour our horn shall be exalted.

 

2.  He has favored us with mercy instead of judgment.

 

ISAIAH 60:10 And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee.

 

3.  He hath favored us with His everlasting love.

 

JEREMIAH 31:3 The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.

 

ZEPHANIAH 3:17 The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.

 

III.  FEAR NOT, FOR NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE WITH GOD.

 

LUKE 1:35, 37 And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.  For with God nothing shall be impossible.

 

NOTE:    We are often faced with what we consider as impossible but there is no reason to fear because nothing is impossible with God.

 

JOB 42:2 I know that thou canst do every thing, and that no thought can be withholden from thee.

 

JEREMIAH 32:17 & 27 Ah Lord God! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee…Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh: is there any thing too hard for me?

 

MATTHEW 19:26 But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

 

NOTE:  There is no power that can defeat the power of God.

 

ISAIAH 43:13 Yea, before the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work, and who shall let it?

 

ROMANS 8:31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

 

1 JOHN 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

 

1V.  FEAR NOT, BUT BE OBEDIENT TO THE WILL OF GOD.

 

MATTHEW 1:20, 24 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the   Holy Ghost.  Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:

 

NOTE: This is one of the greatest promises we have but it is also one of the most difficult to accept.

 

PROVERBS 3:5-8 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.  Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

 

ISAIAH 55:8-9 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

 

V.  FEAR NOT, FOR GOD HAS PROVIDED A SAVIOR.

 

LUKE 2:10-11 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

 

NOTE:  We no longer have to fear the death and the judgment of God.

 

JOB 33:18-28 He keepeth back his soul from the pit, and his life from perishing by the sword.  He is chastened also with pain upon his bed, and the multitude of his bones with strong pain: So that his life abhorreth bread, and his soul dainty meat.  His flesh is consumed away, that it cannot be seen; and his bones that were not seen stick out.  Yea, his soul draweth near unto the grave, and his life to the destroyers.  If there be a messenger with him, an interpreter, one among a thousand, to shew unto man his uprightness: Then he is gracious unto him, and saith, Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom.  His flesh shall be fresher than a child's: he shall return to the days of his youth: He shall pray unto God, and he will be favourable unto him: and he shall see his face with joy: for he will render unto man his righteousness.  He looketh upon men, and if any say, I have sinned, and perverted that which was right, and it profited me not; He will deliver his soul from going into the pit, and his life shall see the light.

 

1 CORINTHIANS 15:55-58 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?  The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.   But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

 

CONCLUSION:  I am forever grateful that these five “Fear Nots of Christmas” in not only good during the Christmas season.

 

DECEMBER 27, 2015

 

“ALL THINGS BECOME NEW”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: Genesis 32:24-32

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

 

INTRO: Jacob had a personal relationship with God and it changed him.

 

   When we have a personal relationship with God it will change us.

 

   Some changes may be small while others may be great.

 

   Seven changes that must take place:

 

1.     NEW RAIMENT

 

NOTE: Before we came to Christ we were clothed in sin

 

Isaiah 64:6 (TLB) We are all infected and impure with sin. When we put on our prized robes of righteousness, we find they are but filthy rags. Like autumn leaves we fade, wither and fall. And our sins, like the wind, sweep us away.

 

Zechariah 3:3-5 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment. And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the LORD stood by.

 

2.     NEW HEART

 

NOTE: When we accept Jesus Christ as Savior, our desires change.

Jeremiah 24:7 (NLT) I will give them hearts that recognize me as the LORD. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me wholeheartedly.

 

Ezekiel 11:19 (NIV) I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh.

 

Ezekiel 36:26 And I will give you a new heart—I will give you new and right desires—and put a new spirit within you. I will take out your stony hearts of sin and give you new hearts of love.

 

3.     NEW WAY OF THINKING

 

NOTE: The way we think controls our attitude towards the things of this world and the things of God.

 

Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

 

Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

 

4.     NEW WALK

 

NOTE: Our conduct changes.

 

Romans 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

 

   We begin to trust God instead of relying on the things of this world.

 

2 Corinthians 5:7 For we walk by faith, not by sight:

 

   We begin to allow the Spirit of God to lead and guide us.

Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.

 

1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

 

   We seek to follow the steps of Christ instead of the ways of this world.

 

1 John 2:6 He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.

 

5.     NEW VISION

 

NOTE: A whole new set of goals become our focus.

 

   We no longer seek to please ourselves but we seek to please God.

 

Philippians 3:7-14 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

 

6.     NEW NAME

 

NOTE: When we come to Christ we become a new creature and therefore we are given a new name by God.

Isaiah 56:5 (TLB) I will give them—in my house, within my walls—a name far greater than the honor they would receive from having sons and daughters. For the name that I will give them is an everlasting one; it will never disappear.

 

Isaiah 62:2 (TLB) The nations shall see your righteousness. Kings shall be blinded by your glory; and God will confer on you a new name.

 

Revelation 3:12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

 

7.     NEW DESTINY

 

NOTE: At one time our path was leading us to eternal damnation but now we are headed for heaven.

 

Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

 

John 14:1-3 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

 

CONCLUSION: Sin ruined the way God created us, through His plain of Salvation we are being restored to the way He created us. 

 

Genesis 1:26-27 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

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