The Coming Judgment

The Coming Judgment

This is an exposition of Psalm 50:1-23. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday evening, May 1, 2016.

Intro:

With rare exception these days, we don’t like to talk in terms of “judgment.”  The idea of someone being held accountable or responsible is considered by many to be anathema.  With the exception of course of “child abuse” or terrorists attacks or those “greedy corporate hotshots!  We want to see them “get theirs.”  But it seems in other areas – no one is responsible.  We are all “victims.”  It is never anybody’s fault.  Have you noticed that?  Even Christians have developed a mindset that believes it is wrong to pass judgment on someone.  Yet I will suggest to you that judgment is a major theme throughout the Scripture.  It’s New Testament as well as Old Testament.  We will give an account.  We are responsible.

We love the doctrine of the “priesthood of the believer”.  The problem is the biblical doctrine has been perverted into meaning, “I’m free to believe whatever I choose to believe.”  It’s just me and my Bible.”

The biblical doctrine of priesthood of the believer is not that I’m free to believe as I wish but rather I am responsible before God.  Judgment is dominant theme throughout the Scripture and it is the theme of our text found in Psalm 50.

Text: Psalm 50:1-23

It has long been suggested that the best interpreter of Scripture is Scripture.
By that we mean that often insight into a passage can be found in other passages.
In many respects 1 Peter 4:17 is a commentary on the Psalm that is before us.

“For it is time for judgment to begin with the family of God; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God?”

Often when we think of judgment we think immediately of that wicked world “out there.”
We think about how awful it will be for those heathens; those nasty pagans.
We often, wrongfully assume, that as God’s children we have nothing to worry about.
We are too quick to presume upon the grace of God.

This is a fine line between trust in and presumption upon God’s grace.
I’m confident that is part of the message of this Psalm.

Psalm 50 is a Judgment Psalm.
It is courtroom drama at its finest.
But it may leave you a bit uncomfortable with our role in this drama.
We have somehow thought that to be accepted by grace is to be free of responsibility.
Such is not the case.
Careful consideration of this text reminds us that:

Thesis: The fact of God’s grace does not nullify God’s setting in judgment of his people.

As a Father, God still makes demands of his children.
I am responsible for my life.
I am responsible for my obedience before him.
I will give an account some day.

There are four things I want us to note in this Psalm.

  1. The Sovereign Judge of the whole Earth summons His people to judgment.  (50:1-6)
  2. The Sovereign Judge rebukes his people for substituting empty ritual for genuine worship.  (50:7-15)
  3. The Sovereign Judge condemns the hypocrisy of alleged believers.  (50:16-22)
  4. The Sovereign Judge delights in a grateful heart and a repentant spirit.  (50:23)

Conclusion:

Being a child of God, accepted by his grace, clothed in the righteousness of Christ is not a free pass to do as you please.  Woe to those who presume upon God’s grace.  With the privilege of God’s acceptance comes the responsibility to order our lives accordingly.  To trust in God’s grace is not to be freed from accountability.  To whom much is given, much is expected.

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Lessons from the Family Tree

Lessons from the Family Tree: Gospel of Luke #11

LukeThis is an exposition of Luke 3:23-38. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday morning, May 1, 2016.

Intro:

Years ago Dr. Adrian Rogers became the pastor of the historic Bellevue Baptist Church of Memphis Tennessee.  It was a grand old church within the Southern Baptist Convention and had been pastored by R.G. Lee and Ramsey Pollard who were pulpit giants within the convention.  Dr. Rogers came to the church as a 40 year-old man from Florida and some of the grand ladies of the South were concerned about his lineage.  One of the ladies approached Dr. Rogers and ask, “Sir, who are your people?”  Dr. Rogers, knowing what and why she was asking said, “Well Mam, my family goes back to a drunken sailor and a crooked farmer.  The sailor’s name was Noah and the farmer’s name was Adam.”  Family is important.  We need to know who we are and where we come from.  Family histories give us grounding and connect us with the past.  This is why there is such fascination with genealogy and family origins.  Someone in my mother’s family decided to research our history.  They barely got started when they found a whole bunch of the family were hung for stealing horses!  They stopped the search afraid of what they might find.  Genealogy has always been important.  Remembering the family story connected folks with the past and the wisdom of those who had gone before.  So it was with Israel.  The Jews of Jesus day maintained their identity by remembering their fathers all they way back to the 12 original tribes.  This remembrance was first transmitted orally but later was recorded for the generations to come.  Knowing who you were was tied directly to knowing from whence you came – witness the numerous genealogies of the Old Testament.  Luke is about to introduce the public ministry of Jesus and he begins with a genealogy in the ancient style.  Our text this morning is found in Luke the 3 beginning with the 12:23.

Text: Luke 3:23-38

Yes, this is normally one of those “skimming” passages.
When we come to these “son of” or “begat” texts we hit the snooze button or skip over it.
But it is here for a reason.
God the Holy Spirit thought it was something we ought to know.

As we reflect on this text we discover that…

Thesis: Contained within this genealogy is the glory of the Gospel: Jesus the Son of God, the Son of Man, Savior of all who will trust in Him.

There is one technical matter we must take up in connection with this passage.  Luke is giving us the genealogy of Jesus.  Matthew gives us a genealogy as well, Matthew 1:1-17.  Even a casual reading of the two make it plain they are different!  They are not the same.  There are overlaps.  There are some common names but they are different.  In Luke we read that Jesus’ grandfather is Heli.  In Matthew it is Jacob.  Well, everyone has two grandfathers.  Yes, but both are connected to Joseph in the text.  There are other differences.  Matthew goes back to Abraham while Luke goes back to Adam.  In addition there there are nearly 40 names that are different.  Most of them between David and Jesus.  How do we explain this?  Did one or both of the gospel writers make a mistake?  There are various theories.

One theory is that both Matthew and Luke record the family tree of Joseph but they do it in two different ways.  That Matthew gives the legal descendants of David and Luke gives the bloodline.  In effect Matthew and Luke are asking different questions.  Matthew is asking, “Who is the next king of Israel?”  Luke is asking, “Who was this person’s father?”  This is reasonable but not provable.  The other main theory is to say that Matthew gives Joseph’s family line while Luke gives Mary’s family line.  Thus Jesus was descended from David through two different lines, one on each side of the family.  This would mean that Mary and Joseph were distant cousins.  This would be consistent with Jewish culture and tradition.

Then why would Luke refer to Joseph as the son of Heli?  There are 2 possibilities one being that Joseph was adopted by Heli because he had no sons.  The other possibility is that the son of Heli doesn’t refer to Joseph at all but rather skips to Jesus.  This could be supported by the language of the text.  In keeping with custom all the names in the list have the definite article attached except for Joseph.  “The Heli, the Matthat and so on.  Joseph is simply Joseph.  The reference of Joseph is a parenthesis pointing back to the virgin birth.  Thus Luke says, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph.   That Jesus was the son (descendant) of Heli.

All things considered I think it best to say Matthew and Luke give two different genealogies.  Matthew the genealogy through Joseph, his legal father and Luke through Mary his actual mother.  After all his humanity came through his mother.

There are three observations I want to make related to this text.

  1. The genealogy of Jesus connects our blessed Lord with our common humanity.
  2. The genealogy of Jesus shows He is the fulfillment of God’s promise.
  3. The genealogy of Jesus declares Him the Savior of all who will trust in Him.

Conclusion:
…made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.  (Hebrews 2:17)

He is connected to our common humanity.
He is the fulfillment of God’s promise.
He is the Savior of all who will trust in Him.

Hallelujah what a Savior!

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I’m a Priest! So What: The Doctrine of Priesthood of the Believer

I’m a Priest! So What: The Doctrine of Priesthood of the Believer: #10 in A Study of God’s Amazing Grace

GodsAmazingGraceThis message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Wednesday evening, April 27, 2016.

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Our Singing Faith

Our Singing Faith

This is an exposition of Psalm 149:1-9. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday evening, April 24, 2016.

Intro:

Do you like to sing?  I like to sing.  I was cut out to be a singer – it’s not my fault someone sewed me up wrong!  When I was a little kid – I was known for singing to myself in the backyard until one day our neighbor, Mr. Hart, heard me.  Later in the day when folks were around he said, “Hey toddler, sing me a little ditty.”  Everybody got a good laugh out of it – it didn’t keep me from singing – I was just careful when and where I did it!  I remember watching the Mitch Miller Show.  Did you “sing along with Mitch?”  Do you remember the cartoons where you followed the bouncing ball and sang along with the cartoon?  People used to sing.  Families would sing at the table following dinner.  Neighbors would gather and there would be singing.  Have you noticed, folks don’t sing much anymore?  People today “listen” to music but they seldom sing.

Singing is a natural way of expressing delight.  There are those times when you’re just happy and it seems singing is appropriate.  About the only place people sing today is in church and even that is in jeopardy.  Singing has always been a part of the church’s life.  One of the earliest records of the church is found in Pliny’s letter to the emperor in which he makes reference to the church.  He said, “They gather early in the morning and sing a hymn to Christ as God.”  On the night our Lord was betrayed the Gospel writer says, “Following the Supper they sang a hymn and went into the night.”  But singing and the people of God have a longer history than that.  The book of Psalms is Israel’s hymnbook.  Even beyond that we find Moses and Miriam singing in the book of Exodus.  When given glimpses into heaven – we consistently find the gathered assembly singing the praise of God.

Psalm 149 calls on the people of God to sing his praise.  Psalm 148 demanded that all of creation praise him.  Celestial bodies, kings, beasts, mountains, forests and every created thing were to join in the song.  Now 149 focuses specifically on those who are the recipients of his grace to sing his praise.  Our text is found in Psalm 149.

Text: Psalm 149:1-9

What we learn about God through our study of the Word and our observations of the world around us are not facts to be held in our memory banks.  They are truths that inform, guide and direct our worship of God and our relationship to Him.  These truths demand a passionate response from us.  When we discover that our God is a loving God who has graciously provided salvation for us in his son, Christ Jesus, and that he continues to give himself to us in the person of the Holy Spirit, we cannot remain silent.
When we understand that God loves us, cares for us, preserves us, guides us, lifts us up when we are down, comforts us in our distress and empowers us in our weakness – we have to express our gratitude and love.

One of the best ways of expressing the depth of our gratitude is through song.  And I said “song” rather than music.  Music is important and much can be expressed in music but singing provides a unique joining of biblical content and emotional assent.  Music alone cannot do that.

When we sing biblical truths they reach the core of our being.  We respond on a deeper level emotionally.  They become more a part of us and far more joyful when we sing them especially when we sing them with others who believe them too!

I just got back from attending a conference in Louisville, Kentucky.  The conference is for pastors and is called Together for the Gospel.  It is held every 2 years.  The first was in 2006.  They were expecting about 1000-1500 to attended and 2000 came.  This conference had over 10,000.  The conference has wonderful preaching, helpful breakout sessions, a fabulous bookstore but the highlight is the singing.  There is no band.  There are no smoke machines, no special lighting, no soloists – it’s all congregational with just a piano and we seek hymns!  New and old.  Often the pianist/leader stops playing and we just hear the voices singing the praise of God.  I stood and wept as 10,000 sang, “It Is Well With My Soul.”

This Psalm reminds us that:

Thesis: The church of the Lord Jesus resounds with a joyful song!

Our text contains two stanzas.

  1. Our song celebrates God’s goodness and grace.  (149:1-5)
  2. Our song affirms God’s inevitable triumph over evil.  (149:6-9)

Conclusion:

Our faith is a singing faith.
Our song celebrates the goodness and grace of God.
Our song affirms God’s inevitable triumph over evil.

You might want to do some vocal exercises – we’ve got some singing to do!

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Biblical Faithfulness: Its Source and Demands

Biblical Faithfulness: Its Source and Demands: Gospel of Luke #10

LukeThis is an exposition of Luke 3:15-22. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday morning, April 24, 2016.

Intro:

We were on vacation.  Bouncing along a rugged gravel road toward the boat dock for an afternoon out on the lake.  It was Saturday.  Our kids were small and they asked what every preacher’s kid wants to know when on vacation, “Do we have to go to church tomorrow?”  I said, “No.  We don’t have to – we get to!”  I then asked them a question.  “Who’s the best preacher you’ve ever heard?”  Jessie immediately shouted, “Papa!”  Zac, without a moment’s hesitation said, “Of course we haven’t heard very many.”  We’ve all got our favorite preachers.  There are those we love to listen to.  The ones we can’t seem to get enough of and then there are those we don’t care for.  He was quite a preacher.  People came from great distances to hear him.  They traveled from the city into the wilderness to hear him declare the word of the Lord.  His unorthodox manner, his prophetic dress, his fiery delivery all added to the allure but the great draw was the anointing of God.  After 400 years of silence the voice of the prophet was heard in the Land.  One crying out in the wilderness, “Prepare the way of the Lord.”  He was gaining national fame.  He was the talk of the town and the source of messianic speculation.  Such things could easily turn a man’s head not to mention his heart.  Yet John the Baptizer was a man on a mission.  A man devoted to the task assigned and thus a model for ministry.  Our text this morning is found in the 3rd chapter of Luke’s Gospel.

Text: Luke 3:15-22

Dr. Luke has quickly taken us through the birth narrative.
We’ve been given insight into the birth of the Messiah and his forerunner.
Both the result of the special work of God.
We have witnessed the birth of the Savior and the unusual events surrounding it.
We have heard the testimonies of Simeon and Anna in the temple compound.
We’ve looked at the lone snapshot of our Lord’s childhood.

Last time we witnessed the dramatic rise of John’s ministry rooted in the Word of God, calling for repentance and exalting the Lord Jesus.

This morning we are going to back up and look again at John and then witness the beginning of our Lord’s public ministry.  We begin with Luke 3:15 of Luke 3.

[Read Text]
As we think about the task assigned to us, as the church and as individual believers, there is a goal we must keep ever before us.  Faithfulness.  Faithful to God.  Faithful to Scripture.  Faithful to the assignment.  Faithful to one another.  Faithful to biblical standards.  Faithfulness isn’t easy.  The Old Testament is in large part a record of Israel’s unfaithfulness.  An honest look at our own lives reveal the same failings.  Yet faithfulness is the goal.

Thesis:  As we work our way through Luke’s narrative of John’s ministry and the baptism of the Lord Jesus we discover two demands of biblical faithfulness and its source.

  1. Biblical faithfulness demands a Christ-centered, Christ-exalting ministry.  (3:15-17)
  2. Biblical faithfulness demands faithfulness no matter what the cost.  (3:18-20)
  3. Biblical faithfulness begins with a sold grasp on the person of the Lord Jesus.  (3:21-22)

Conclusion:
Why does this matter?  What is the point?  Why is it in the text?  How does it relate to our faithfulness?  Jesus of Nazareth is the unique, one and only, beloved Son of the living God.  He is an obedient Son who is the joy and delight of His Father.  Here at the beginning there is the acknowledgement that he is to be numbered with transgressors.  He is agreeing to the Father’s plan to redeem sinful, fallen men and women.  How does this connect to our faithfulness?  When you come to trust in the Lord Jesus.  When you repent of your sin and trust in Christ alone.  You are united with Christ.  His righteousness becomes your righteousness.  When the Father looks at you he sees the perfect righteousness of his Son the Lord Jesus.  Thus, you are my beloved son, you are my beloved daughter and with you I am well pleased.

Accepted and beloved of the Father because of the Son.
My life of faithfulness is one of gratitude and devotion to the One who so loves me.
This is glorious, life altering truth.
This is Gospel truth.
It demands our lives, our souls, our all.

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The Working of Sovereign Grace

The Working of Sovereign Grace

This is an exposition of Genesis 41:15-44:17. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday evening, April 17, 2016.

Intro:

Have you noticed that no one has to be convinced or coerced into telling good news?  In fact people argue over who gets to tell what.  A baby is born – “Let me tell them.”  “No you told the last ones – it’s my turn.”  A guy gets a new car – he’s telling everyone all about it.  Even perfect strangers!  People with good news can be annoying.  You find yourself thinking, “I know this means a lot to you – but I’m really not interested.”  At the same time it is great to rejoice with those who rejoice.  There is great joy in celebrating good news with others.  That is especially true when we celebrate the “good news” of salvation in the Lord Jesus.  As we recount our stories of how we came to faith and God’s work of grace in us.  From time to time it is good for us to stop and remember and to rejoice in and celebrate the work of God in our midst.  I like the translation of Psalm 107:1-3 in the New Living Translation

“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!  His faithful love endures forever.  Has the Lord redeemed you?  Then speak out!  Tell others he has saved you from your enemies.  For he has gathered the exiles from many lands, from east and west,  from north and south.”

Have you been saved?  Speak out!  The KJV is “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so.”  Peter tells us to “be prepared to give a reason for the hope that is in you.”  I’m wonder if a few of you would like the opportunity this evening to briefly share your story?  The story of how God’s grace came to you and granted you life eternal and life abundant.

Would you share your testimony?  Just stand up where you are and give a brief word.

Isn’t this great?  Doesn’t it encourage your heart as you are reminded of the work of God in the hearts of your brothers and sisters in Christ?  Doesn’t it cause you to look back and relive your own experience?  From time to time we need to share with each other God’s working in us.  When we think of salvation we are drawn naturally to the pages of the New Testament.  For it is there we find the Gospel account of the life and ministry of Jesus.  There we find the explicit teaching of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, because of Christ alone.  We think of the book of Acts and its numerous accounts of conversions.  But we must recognize that such stories are not the sole possession of the New Testament.  The same God was at work in the pages of the Old Testament taking those dead in trespass and sin and awakening them to the truth.  A great example is found again in the story of Joseph.

Text: Genesis 42:1-44:34

I want you to listen to this story.  Rather than reading along – listen.  Consider what is happening.  Consider the emotions involved.  Consider the drama of the passage.  Experience this passage then we’ll come back and talk about it.

This is a fascinating passage to me.
Some 22 years have passed since Joseph had been betrayed by his brothers.
He has experienced incredible ups and downs.
He was a slave who rose to a place of prominence within the house of Potiphar.
Then he is falsely accused and imprisoned.
He is blessed of God in prison and once again is elevation.
He is used of God to interpret dreams for two former government officials.
Then he is “forgotten” for two years.
Then in one day he goes from prison to the palace and is made Prime Minister.
He is married to the daughter of a prominent member of Egyptian society.
He is the father of two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim.
Now as a result of a great famine – his brothers are brought before him and bow at his feet.

Why doesn’t Joseph reveal himself?
Why not make himself known and punish these guys?
Why not say, “Ha I told you so!”
Wouldn’t you rub their noses in it?  I’m afraid that would have been my reaction.
Joseph doesn’t do that.
But neither does he reveal himself and offer love and grace and forgiveness.
Why not?
What’s going on?

God is at work in all of this.
God is working at His pace, according to His schedule in the lives of Joseph’s brothers.
Look carefully and you will find a valuable lesson about the working of God’s grace.

Thesis: Salvation is the result of the working of God’s sovereign grace.

As we survey these three chapters I want us to note three key elements from the story.  Elements that reflect the work of God in the lives of these 10 brothers.

  1. The working of God’s grace awakens a sense of genuine need.  (42:1-23)
  2. The working of God’s grace opens blind eyes to the reality of the presence of God.  (42:24-35)
  3. The working of God’s grace lovingly brings us to the end of ourselves.  (43:15-44:16)

Conclusion:
This is the working of God’s grace.  It is glorious and wonderful.  It is beyond finding out.  First there is an awakening of need.  Then an awareness of the reality of God and finally a reaching the end of our rope – coming to the end of ourselves.  Salvation is the work of God.  It is the mighty working of his grace.

Where are you in the process?

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Authentic Gospel Ministry

Authentic Gospel Ministry: 2016 Gospel of Luke #9

LukeThis is an exposition of Luke 3:1-18. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday morning, April 17, 2016.

Intro:

Oh, he was “successful” to a degree.  A lot of folks liked his style.  For the most part they were not very sophisticated.  He was crude.  His manner was gruff.  He was socially awkward – he could have never made it as the pastor of a sophisticated urban church or in the cultured suburbs.  But he could draw a crowd.  But then he didn’t know how to “work” the crowd.  Furthermore he didn’t seem interested in learning how to work the crowd.  I guess that crowd from the Baptist Building in Jerusalem came as much out of curiosity as anything else.  He wasn’t impressed.  In fact he was down right insulting to them!  That’s no way to get ahead in the convention.  But then John never seemed interested in getting ahead.  Instead there was one consuming passion in his life.  There was a fire shut up in his bones.  A message from the heart of God that had to be delivered.

The voice of John the baptizer came thundering from the wilderness.  His message was one of repentance and preparation for the One coming.  His message stood in stark contrast to the world around him.  His message was as “out of place” as he himself was.  Out of moral, political and religious darkness came the voice of a true prophet.  A voice trumpeting the authentic Gospel without even a hint of compromise.

We find Luke’s description of his early ministry in the opening verses of Luke 3.

Text: Luke 3:1-18

The context of John’s ministry is not unlike that of our own day.
Corruption abounded in every area of life.
Morally – immorality, licentiousness and perversion were common place.
Politically – it was a day of tyrants and petty dictators.
Religiously – even among the “people of God” corruption reigned.
People were very religious – but where were the marks of genuine faith?

The Sadducess with their political correctness and connects were concerned with power and influence.

The Pharisees with their legalistic faith of rules and regulations were interested in keeping score and gaining the applause of men.

It’s not so different today.
The Pharisees are still with us – running about preaching a gospel of dos and don’ts.
Concerned primarily with outward appearances.
Being sure to keep the letter of the Law yet not understanding the spirit of the Law.
Straining at the gnat while swallowing the camel.

On the other hand there are the Sadducess.
Always concerned with what is politically correct.
Concerned, even consumed, with appearances.
They stress toleration and call for a kinder, gentler Christianity.

Engaged in what one scholar referred to as “Seinfeld Christianity” – it’s a religion about nothing!

Our desperate need is for a voice from the wilderness – trumpeting the authentic Gospel.
As we explore the text in Luke 3 and look at our own day we cannot help but be reminded that:

Thesis:  In a day of market-driven, entertainment-oriented worship, there remains a desperate need for authentic Gospel ministry.

This is the responsibility of the church.

This is what we are to be about.  We are to be that voice in the wilderness.  We are to uncompromisingly trumpet the clarion call of repentance and faith.  We are to point the way to the Savior.

I’m convinced that we have a model for us in the ministry of John.  Not that we need to change our wardrobe and our diet but that we pattern our ministry after his.  There are three things I want us to note in our text.

Authentic Gospel ministry rests securely on the authority of God’s Word.  (3:1-6)

Authentic Gospel ministry demands a call for genuine repentance.  (3:7-14)

Authentic Gospel ministry points to, exalts, and magnifies the Lord Jesus.  (3:15-18)

Conclusion:
We are called to a life of authentic Gospel ministry.
That ministry rests securely in the authority of the Word of God.
It demands a call for genuine repentance.
And it points to, exalts and magnifies the Lord Jesus.

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Why We Suffer

This Wednesday evening devotional on why Christians suffer was delivered by Roy Emmons at Trinity Baptist on April 13, 2016.

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A Revealing Snapshot of Our Savior

A Revealing Snapshot of Our Savior: Gospel of Luke #8

LukeThis is an exposition of Luke 2:39-52. This message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Sunday morning, April 10, 2016.

Intro

As a kid I was blessed to have my grandparents living just a few blocks from my house.  I spent a lot of time there.  I would get on my bike and ride over and spend hours with my Mema and Papa.  Often just watching television, sometimes “working” in the garden or cleaning out under the back porch but I didn’t mind because before the visit was over I’d be pouring peanuts into my bottle of ice cold Pepsi and relaxing before the ride home.  One of my favorite activities was getting out the cardboard box filled with old photographs.  I would spend hours looking at those pictures as my Mema told me the stories of those pictured.  Those old black and white photos would turn into living color in my mind as I imaged what their lives were like.  I would laugh as she said, “That was me just before your daddy was born.”  I would look at pictures of cousins I’d never met and wonder what their lives were like now.  Eventually we’d put the box away and I would leave only to return and travel down that same road again and again.  I also loved looking at my dad’s high school yearbooks.  I did that again recently and saw some of you!  When I look at the pictures of my own children I see, in those pictures, traits that have come to full flower in my now grown children and hints of what is beginning to show in my grandchildren.  Snapshots can be very revealing.  A snapshot, unlike a portrait, is an unguarded moment.  I brief summary of insight into a person’s life.  Luke alone gives us a snapshot of our Lord as a child and it is very revealing.  Our text this morning is found in Luke Luke 2 beginning with Luke 2:39.

Text: Luke 2:39-52

Luke ends his birth narrative with a summary statement in Luke 2:40: …and the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom.  And the favor of God was upon him.

He then ends the chapter in Luke 2:52 with: …And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.

In between these two summary statements is the lone account of Jesus as a boy.
We read of his birth and events connected with it.
Then this story about him as a 12 year-old.
Then nothing until he is 30 and begins his public ministry.

No doubt after his interviews Luke would have many things he could have told us about the childhood of Jesus but of all the things Jesus said and did during the first 30 years of his life, this is the only one recorded in the Scriptures.  So…it must have special significance.

As we work through this text I want us to see that…

Thesis: This snapshot from the childhood of our Lord reveals the wonder of the incarnation, the glory of his relationship with God and a foreshadowing of his self-denial and faithful service.

I want to point out three things.

  1. The wonder of the incarnation – (2:39-40, 52) – His being made like us in every way is the basis of his compassionate understanding of our weakness.
  2. The glory of his unique person – (2:41-50) – As the only begotten Son of God he has great influence as our intercessor.
  3. The audacity of his humility – (2:51) – The obedient Child a picture of his selfless service.
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The Doctrine of Eternal Security

The Doctrine of Eternal Security: #9 in A Study of God’s Amazing Grace

GodsAmazingGraceThis message by Pastor Rod Harris was delivered at Trinity Baptist Church on Wednesday evening, April 6, 2016.

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