Kamloops Free Methodist Church

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  • Dec2Fri

    'God With Us' by Pastor Vern

    December 2, 2016

    Matt 1: 18-21                                                             

    The second Sunday of Advent points us to the manger with the amazing news that we are about to have the opportunity to meet deity. Life for humans is about to change with the possibility of personal relationship with God.

    Background

    ·         Joseph was part of God’s plan even though he was unaware of it

    ·         Joseph was engaged to Mary and was making plans for the wedding

    ·         Joseph found out Mary was pregnant was going to end the engagement quietly

    ·         One restless night Joseph had a dream that changed his life

    ·         Joseph was given instruction by and angel to carry on

    ·         This was a ‘God moment’ for both Joseph and Mary

    ·         Joseph was given the name ‘Jesus’ – he will save his people from their sins

    ·         Joseph was also given the name ‘Immanuel’ – God with us

    ·         Joseph woke up and took Mary as his wife and carried on with the plans

    1 In our experience God seemed removed

    ·         In the Old Testament experience God was distant

    ·         People were aware of God but not involved

    ·         People felt removed or isolated from God

    ·         God was a concept but not interactive

    2 In our experience God seemed unapproachable

    ·         He was a violent storm, He was a burning bush, He was a pillar of fire

    ·         To see Him was deadly – hide from Him

    ·         God was confrontational  and occasionally worked with a miracle

    ·         God at times was visible but not involved or seen as personal

    3 God is now ‘with us’

    ·         Fully God and fully man ‘perfect unity in one person of a divine and a human nature’ Hank Hanegraaff – pg 49 The Heart of Christmas

    ·Col 2:9 ‘For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form’

    ·         With us – ‘When God showed up in Jesus Christ, he was a baby… little babies can be picked up, hugged, kissed, and they’re open to it, they cling to you. Why would God come this time in the form of a baby, rather than a firestorm or whirlwind? He came to take away our sins’        Timothy Keller pg 54 – Hidden Christmas

    ·         Relationship – in Jesus, an unapproachable God can be known and loved.

    ·         Shared life – ‘We cannot live without bumps and pains, without heartache and desolation, without mosquito bites and (disease). Immanuel was saying, “You shall not bear such pain alone” Calvin Miller- The Christ of Christmas

    Application – what Joseph thought about until the baby was born

    ·God really loves us

    ·God was sending His son Jesus to us

    ·God was serious about a personal relationship with us

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