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December 20, 2021 7:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. Christmas is in a sense, but not your spirit would be involved in the spirit of the joining us today on this additional fellowship in the work of Pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana. Let's join Pastor Bill Gebhardt now is once again who shows us how God's word meets our world. Christmas trees holiday has anything even close to Christmas. You can listen 24 hours a day. From Thanksgiving to Christmas to Christmas music just goes on and on and on. In fact, in preparing the sermon. I was listening to the hundred greatest Christmas songs ever on Accu radio at my computer as I thought about this so much of the music of Christmas becomes white noise was so familiar with the song suggests something is there. We don't really even think about it. Sometimes we sing a lot of it, something like, sometimes we have a malady in our head, but I'm not so sure that really singing in thinking about the way that we should know that's not a problem if you're singing white Christmas or jingle bells or I want a hippopotamus for Christmas.
Note that really doesn't matter, but somehow there's been a blending of everything I really notice that this past year. If you know if you know this. Not that there are dozens of Hallmark Christmas movies and I've seen thousands and up one of things I notice this year with the Hallmark Christmas movies into movies are little bit earlier week or two ago during a Christmas party and everything the town near the end and it's it's a romantic scene of the end where they realize they love each other always works that way and nurse Silent Night explained so they dance then just a day or two ago. The first Noel was one and they were dancing again. I just want to tell you Silent Night first Noel are not dance numbers. That's not how you dance, but that's the way the music works so I think often as Christians. What ends up happening is even with the incredible amount of great music that's been written about the birth of Jesus Christ. We don't think about even when we sing it we just mouth the words so today I'm going to do something that I've never done before. I'm going to preach one of the greatest Christmas songs ever written, and was written by Charles Wesley, Charles Wesley is the brother of John Wesley great evangelist and the father of the modern Methodist Church.
Charles Wesley in the 1700s Road 6000 hymns. That's more than any man is ever written. It's less than Fanny Crosby wrote but it's more than any man has ever written, and he said the reason he did.
His goal was that he wanted to teach the Bible and theology to the poor and illiterate people of England. So in 1739 he wrote a poem. He was inspired as he is walking through its Christmas time.
London heard the church bells ringing, and so he called his poem. Hark, he wrote this incredible Christmas poem and song.
One year after he had converted to Jesus Christ in 1753, George Whitfield, a great speaker evangelist here in America. He put it to music but was in 1850 that the music was paired then changed with those music to the music of Mendelson and so you have this great great Christmas Carol. Hark the Herald Angels Sing, talk about what you open your Bibles to Luke chapter 2 in verses 13 and 14.
Luke says something here that I sort of fits what he is about the same when he writes this him. It starts on verse 13 like this and suddenly this wasn't something gradual and suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, glory to God in the highest and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased Wesley song begins. Hark the Herald Angels Sing glory to the new born king.
This is an glory to a baby who's going to become a king.
This is Hark about a king who became a baby. That's what he writes. Hark the Herald Angels Sing having thought about how much angels sing in Bible not near as much as you think they sang at the physical creation of the universe is a joke tells a saying that Revelation tells and in the end times there singing again.
The singing praise and now here there singing the birth of Jesus Christ in Bethlehem when an amazing thing that it says this piece on earth and mercy. Mild God and sinners reconciled for this is loaded with meaning. That's why came. That's why the baby was born, God and sinners reconciled a holy God and sinful people now reconciled the apostle Paul says this in Romans five he says for a while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his son.
That's what Jesus did the baby in the manger becomes a man on the cross and the reason there is a baby in the manger so that he becomes the man on the cross as I say, often at this time in your married had a little lamb John the Baptist when he first met Christ about the launches ministry, he said, behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. The idea of reconciling you and me with a holy God. That's where he was born.
Peace on earth and mercy. Mild God and sinners reconciled joyful all you nations rise join the triumph of the skies with angelic host proclaim Christ, the Messiah is born in Bethlehem while joyful, all you nations. This is the great news for everybody does it matter where you're born when you're born. This is to look up the first 10 with the angel said you spoke to the shepherds first and the angel said to them, do not be afraid, for behold I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people. That's a Wesley captures joyful, all you nations rise join the triumph of the skies, the Messiah has been born in Bethlehem.
Mankind in the angelic world joined together in praise of God. Christ is born in Bethlehem and then he repeats. Hark the Herald Angels Sing glory to the newborn King. The second verse starts out like this Christ by highest heaven adored Christ, the everlasting Lord, the Angels have a perspective of this that we don't often appreciate the event in heaven for a long time and they know who the son of God is. We know from John one in Colossians 1 he created them. They know that he is a great Creator God, and now they see him coming to earth in the form of a baby is an amazing thing. The concept of them has to be so unusual, so Wesley writes Christ by highest heaven adored. He is the everlasting Lord. And then these words, offspring of a virgin's womb.
Imagine of the range of what we will be talking about seeing this it be one thing to say he's gonna become a man and come to earth to come like Superman produce over things and then you go to the cross becomes as a baby, hopeless, pathetic baby and not just any baby. He's the offspring of a virgin's wall. That's what I can imagine what the angel think and why is he doing this, then this line 1 of the best in the entire Carol veiled in flesh the Godhead see what a beautiful way of saying is there is veiled I could hardly imagine it veiled in flesh the Godhead see hail the incarnate deity. Amazing line. They were the Angels would say look, I know this is what's happening but I have no idea how or why I just don't. This is an amazing thing it breaks them out in this kind of worship. This everlasting Lord is the offspring of a virgin's womb.
Just an amazing thing when you think about it. It's a mystery to us and whether you believe it was a mystery to them as well. The question would be 80 answers in the next part of the verse pleased as man with man to dwell. Why would God do this, is pleased with man because they try hard because they sin willfully displeased with man because a set up religious activity to try to impress him wisely pleased with us because he loves us. That's what it means, loves us. Why would the son of God, be born in Bethlehem, because he loves us. I always try to read John 316 for myself when it says for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son.
I always try to read it for me for God so loved me so love me when to give his only begotten son for me as he does for you is an amazing thing when you think about weed and earn it. We don't deserve it but we got it. There's the grace of God in action last time we talked about Jesus was full of grace and truth.
But the point of adherence is that he is pleased with us because he loves us. Please this man with man to dwell.
Jesus our Emmanuelle which means what God with us.
He is our demand. UL Hark the Herald Angels Sing glory to the newborn King.
The third verse held a heaven born Prince of peace told me for moment. Isaiah chapter 9 verse six says for her child will be born to us, a son will be given to us just what Wesley writes about a child born but a son is given, that's the deity and humanity of Christ and then it says in the government arrest on his shoulders's name will be called wonderful Counselor, mighty God, eternal father, and then there is Prince of peace. Wisely, the Prince of peace because his reconciled us to a holy God. When governments get together and have peace talks. What's the point of the piece talk to reconcile both parties. Can we avoid war and the outcome of that set piece. Jesus is called by Isaiah 700 years earlier, the Prince of peace. In Isaiah 7 he writes in verse 14 therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, a virgin will be with child, and bear a son, and you will call his name Emmanuelle God with us. He said held a heaven born Prince of peace become some heaven.
Then he says hail the Sun of righteousness, the only single human being that's ever lived. That was righteousness.
Jesus Christ is never been another all sinful short of the glory of God.
There is none righteous, no not one.
He is the only one. Righteousness is intrinsic to Jesus Christ. That's what makes this baby so special and so unique and so different in every possible way. And then he says this light and life to all he brings. Remember, John said that the light came into the darkness and the darkness cannot comprehend and Johnny. Jesus said I am the light of the world is an amazing thing when you think about the light of Jesus Christ in his lifetime man only got one glimpse of this and want to see this in Matthew 17 verse one.
Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John his brother, and he led them up to a high mountain by themselves. He was transformed before them.
His face shone like the sun, and his garments became as white as light. That's one of my favorite scenes in the entire Gospels. These three men get to see Jesus for who he really is.
And Jesus does take some up to the mountain and then he shows employers know they are so overwhelmed when they see Jesus for who he really is that Peter talks about the idea. Let's go Tabernacles let's worship he's talking to Elijah and Moses on this mountain, but it's interesting that he hears and the father. This is my beloved son in whom I will pleased the idea behind it is simple. He's like he is like that's wasted on the light of the world, but it again what Wesley writes light and life.
He brings to all he brings his life from a certain point of you understand something about you and me were death. Ever since the Garden of Eden. The day you eat it or not, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil that day you will surely what die and he died spiritually that day. Now they lived a lot of years later, and then a guy but you and I are death Jesus Christ is life. That's why said I am the way and the truth and what I'm the life. The only hope of mankind for eternal life is the life of Jesus Christ is the life you see, that's the point. He that believes in the son has life.
He does not believe in the sun does not have wiper the wrath of God abides on him. That's of the Scripture say so. He is life. Are you sure that he can give us that while the it Wesley writes risen with healing in his wings.
That seems like a strange phrase. In fact, I had to talk to a very well educated man after the 8 o'clock and said was Wesley applying that God has wings, and I said no he's writing a poem he had. It's a metaphor of the psalmist says the same thing.
We take refuge under the wings of God.
It doesn't mean God wings is a spirit so we should be obvious, but he says there's healing in his wings and even though Jesus can heal. We don't deny that all we pray for healing the people or simply pray for healing and Jesus can do that but that's not the healing he's talking about here.
He's talking about your and my fatal infirmity where the diagnosis and prognosis's death. The diagnosis is sin, the prognosis is death, and he said he has healing in his wings in his person will have you know to work the first word brilliantly written by Wesley risen as I know works, we mean how do you know Jesus is the way the truth and life. How do you know is raising the dead. If he wasn't raising the dead, without a resurrection pulse is a first radius 15 and were to be the most pitied of any group of people you and I believe is the big lie was raised.
See, it's the resurrection of Christ that gives us the assurance that God the father is satisfied with the sacrifice of Jesus Christ and he makes this incredible sacrifice for us. Then Wesley writes mild he lays his glory by what great insight.
This is go with me to Philippians chapter 2 and verse five Paul writes this, he said have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although he existed in the form of God, the more Faye of God. He did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but he emptied himself mild he lays his glory by his Jesus truly God yes so was the only truly God here on earth. No, he laid aside a lot. Not all a lot of his divine prerogative. That's Jesus did that out of his own humility mildly. He lays his glory by notice of Pogo zoning writes this, he emptied himself, taking on the form of a bondservant being made in the likeness of men. When my grievances again with the word bondservant. It's not the word bondservant is the word do lots which a slave became a slave below father being found in the appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient even to the point of death, and death and across mild, he lay his glory by, he became one of us wasn't rich was a powerful in the sense of human government look like a rude underground.
No one really took notice and yet here he is the creator of all things all resources for this reason also, God highly exalted him and showed an stolen him a name is above every name, so that the name of Jesus every knee will bow and every one in heaven on earth and under the earth, and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the father.
That was his mission. He laid those prerogatives aside mild he lays his glory by born that man no more a guy that time of itself something you and I should think about what was the baby point so you won't. That's it. Why was he born so you won't. He's not born you die so the line he said born to raise the sons of earth born to give them second birth now that's kind of unique thing when you think about it going to give them second birth to rim. The story of Jesus and Nicodemus Nicodemus this great Pharisee. He is the lead teacher of the Sanhedrin and it's so funny because it comes to Jesus and he says the Jesus that Rabbi, we know that you have come from God as a teacher and that no one can do the signs you do unless God is with while that's a big news of the lead teacher, the Sanhedrin Jesus done.
Thank him. In fact it doesn't even recognize in a sense, I know you are really great Nicodemus, the great teacher of the Sanhedrin will thanks for the compliment she's been sanding like that is very first words Nicodemus. Jesus answered and said, truly, truly, I say to you, unless you are born again, you can't see the kingdom of God.
You have to be born again to see the kingdom of God. And that's exactly what he writes born to raise the sons of earth born to give them second birth.
I think often we think that we invented the term born again, this is new is nothing new about them born again and by the way, that's with what the Wesley's took over England with John Wesley was an incredible evangelist with the gospel of Jesus Christ so mild he lays his glory by born that man no more may die, born to raise the sons of earth born to give them second birth spark Herald Angels Sing glory to the newborn King is a minicourse if you just read that and think about what he wrote. This is a minicourse in Christology. This is who Jesus Christ is exactly who is why he came. What motivates him. This is an amazing thing just in one short Christmas Carol: Hark the Herald Angels Sing some little bacchanal and read it and look what happened. Starting in verse eight look to have an open great in the same region.
There were some shepherds staying out the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night.
I don't miss the context of that when it's nighttime in Bethlehem 2000 years ago. Unless it's a full moon night. You can see your hand upon your face is pitch black, an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them the glory of the Lord shone around them, so incident Vegas for that instant light from everywhere and then it says and they were terribly frightened.
How can they not be the angel said to them, don't be afraid behold I bring you good news of great joy to be for all the people today for the day in the city of David.
There's been born for you a savior is Christ the Lord. This will be assigned to you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger and suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, glory to God in the highest and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased when Yvette and when the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another. Let's go straight to bubble him then and let's see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us and so they came in a hurry and they find on their their weight to Mary and Joseph and the baby as he lay in a manger and when they are seen as they made known the statement, which have been told them about this child and all who heard it wondered at the things were being told them by the shepherds but Mary treasured all these things pondering them in her heart and the shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they heard and seen Jess's been told what's the spirit of Christmas. Christmas past Christmas present Christmas futures at spirit of Christmas. I just heard on the Hallmark movie the spirit of Christmas is family outside with the spirit of Christmas is giving in a sense, but not you and I giving you the spirit of Christmas is worship essence. You will be involved in the spirit of Christmas worship as a Hark the Herald Angels Sing missing worship how good their singing affect the shepherds, they worshiped the shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all they had seen that's how they affected my question to you today is, is when you sing Hark the Herald Angels Sing how this would affect you see how does it affect you as a white noise. Hark the Herald Angels and it is going through another song to get through what you think about this is our Angels. This is what they said about our Lord Jesus Christ.
This Christmas releasing these great signs you hear them. Think about the culture change them into another Some of These Are Submitted Nervously Written to Tell You This Time and Pastor Bill Gebhardt on the Radio Ministry of Fellowship Lord, If You Ever Miss One of Our Broadcast or Maybe You Just Take a Listen to the Message One More Time. Remember, You Can Google a Great Website Called One Place.com That's One Place.com and You Can Listen the Fellowship and the Word Online at That Website You Will Find on with Today's Broadcast but Also Many of Our Previous Audio Programs As Well Have Fellowship in the Word. We Are Thankful for Those Who Financially Support Our Ministry and Make This Broadcast Possible. We Ask All of Our Listeners to Prayerfully Consider How You Might Help His Radio Ministry Continuous Broadcast on This Radio Station by Supporting Us Monthly with Just a One-Time Gift Support for Ministry Can Be Sent to Fellowship in the Word. 4600 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie, LA 7006 if you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format that is is a sermon, the pastor Bill delivered during a Sunday morning service of Fellowship Bible church visit our website FVC Nola.org that FVC and oh LA.O RG at our website you will find hundreds pastor Bill sermon you can browse through our sermon archives defined sermon series are looking you can search by title. Once you find the message you're looking for.
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