SERMON SEEDS
December 17, 2019, 3:00 PM

SERMON SEEDS FOR WEEK OF 12/16/19


SERMON SEEDS

R28 – THE WEEK OF DECEMBER 16, 2019

 

Sermon Seeds is a generally weekly collection of Sermon and Bible Study Outlines and Full Lessons from the pen of Pastor Jack Peters. Pastor Jack has been pastoring for over 43 years and enjoys sharing what he gleans from God’s Word. He currently serves as Pastor of the First Baptist Church of New Holland, PA.

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MATTHEW 2:1-12 – WISE MEN STILL

Proverbs 4:5 (KJV) - Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.

Proverbs 4:7 (KJV) - Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

In the Christmas Season and in every season, it is important that we be wise men and women. What better place to learn wisdom than from the Wise Men of Matthew 2:1-12?

We know very little about the wise men. 

· They have been known as the “three kings”, but we do not know that they were kings.

· We do not even know that there were three of them.  The idea of there being three wise men comes from the fact that they brought three gifts.

  • The word used for wise men is actually “magi”, the word from which we get the word, magic.  They were specialists in astronomy and astrology and monotheistic.

We know nothing about the star they followed. I personally feel that it was special, supernatural event.

We will not spend time speculating about what we do not know, Instead we will look at what made them wise and encourage you to be wise men and women still.

WISE MEN STILL SEEK JESUS – Vss. 1-2

  • As a Savior who can be trusted – Luke 2:11, Acts 4:12, 1 John 5:11-12
  • As Sovereign who can be known – Romans 10:9-10, Philippians 3:7-14, 20-21

 

WISE MEN STILL COME TO WORSHIP JESUS – Vss. 2, 11

Hebrews 12:28-29, Hebrews 13:15, 2 Timothy 1:17

 

WISE MEN STILL GIVE GIFTS FIT FOR A KING – Vs. 11

Gold – Our finances at His disposal – 2 Corinthians 9:6-8

Frankincense – Our prayers – Psalm 141:2

Myrrh – Ourselves dead to the world and alive to Christ Galatians 2:20

 

WISE MEN STILL SENSE GOD’S LEADING – Vs. 12

They were willing to follow the star, though it meant depravation.

They were attentive to the dream.

What good is it for God to speak to you, unless you are listening? Psalm 32:8, Psalm 1:1-3, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-21

 

WISE MEN STILL OBEY – Vs. 12

1 Samuel 15:22-23, Matthew 11:28-30

 

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ISAIAH 1:10-20 – CHRISTMAS CLEANUP

 

The Lord Jesus through the Holy Spirit does live inside of each and every true Christian.  And often Jesus is living in squalid conditions.  I say this because often we Christians look good and righteous on the outside, but inwardly we are filthy! And I believe that Jesus can smell the stench, not unlike the stench of kitty litter that needs to be changed!

Although we should worship on a daily and weekly basis Christmas is one the major times of worship in the year. As the oncoming holiday approaches, we should want to make sure that God is pleased with our worship.

God will not be pleased with our worship if we are at all like the citizens of Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Isaiah the prophet.  As Isaiah called for the people of his day to clean up their act, it is time to clean up our act in preparation for a season that should be loaded with worship.

WE NEED CLEANUP WHEN:

1. OUR ACTIONS REMIND GOD OF SODOM AND GOMORRAH - Vs. 10

In Verse 9 God told the people of Isaiah’s day, that unless there had been a small remnant of faithful people they would have met the fate of Sodom and Gomorrah. God rained fire and brimstone on them and everyone but 3 people were destroyed. God judged their sins.

Vs. 10 – God calls the leaders of Judah “Sodom” and the people “Gomorrah”.  Their sins were so bad they were just like those wicked cities.

Usually when we think of the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah we think of the sin of homosexuality.  This was of course one their sins.  But there is more. Ezekiel 16:49-50

Now think with me for a moment.  Is this anything like us today.

Are we too proud to admit when are wrong?

Are we too proud to forgive?

Are we too proud come to God for help?

Are we too proud to be submissive to God and do things his way?

What about fullness of bread?  Are we overfed when others are starving? Do we overeat?

  • Are we idle when God has things for us to do?
  • Are we idle when there are people who do not know the Gospel?
  • Are we idle in our zeal and love for God?

Do we neglect the physically and spiritually poor and needy when we ourselves are proud, full and lazy?

And Sodom was guilty of wicked abominations. Although you might night have any time for homosexuality, are you allowing sexual fantasies, pornography, adultery, or some other abomination to control you?

 

2. WE NEED CLEANUP WHEN THERE ARE MANY SACRIFICES, BUT A GOD WHO IS FED UP - Vs. 11

God was fed up with the sacrifices of the people, but God had instituted the sacrifices and they are actually pictures of the atoning work of Christ.

God was fed up with the sacrifices because of the hypocrisy of the people.  They offered their sacrifices, and worshipped God, but they were full of iniquity. Isaiah 29:13

Where is YOUR heart when you worship?

Is it focused on God or something else?

Where is YOUR heart right now?  Is it focused on God or something that pleases you?

3. WE NEED CLEANUP WHEN THERE IS FREQUENT ATTENDANCE, BUT A GOD WHO IS INDIFFERENT - Vs. 12

Does God consider your worship a pleasure to Him or does God see you as “trampling his courts”. 

Does God become weary of your presence because your heart is not right with Him?

Does God become weary of your presence because you really don’t want to be here and because you don’t really care?

4. WE NEED CLEANUP WHEN THERE ARE MANY ATTEMPTS AT WORSHIP, BUT A GOD WHO IS GRIEVED - Vss. 13-14

God had ordained many days of worship for the Jewish people.  But now he wanted nothing to do with them, because of the heart condition and sinful behavior of the people.

Have you ever stopped to consider what God thinks of the biggest Christian holiday of the year, Christmas?  Much of the worship he gets at Christmas grieves Him, because the hearts of the worshippers are not right!

5. WE NEED CLEANUP WHEN THERE ARE MANY PRAYERS, BUT A GOD WHO WILL NOT HEAR - Vs. 15

When and why does not God hear our prayers? Isaiah 59:2

The children of Israel had bloody hands and therefore God did not listen to them. The children of Israel did not necessarily literally kill some one. But their actions brought about the same results.

And we do not need to kill someone to have bloody hands. Matthew 5:21-22, Hebrews 12:14-15

If you are angry with a brother of sister without a cause you are guilty of the equivalent of murder.

If you commit character assassination you are displeasing God.

If you hold a grudge, a root of bitterness, against someone you are failing to apply the grace of God to your life. This grudge will trouble you and those around you.

And let me tell you something else.  This church is hurting because some of you are holding grudges against others in this congregation. 

Some of these grudges have gone on for years!

WE HAVE CLEANUP WHEN:

1. WE HEED GOD'S CALL TO REPENTANCE

A. Confess (Wash you, and make you clean) - Vs. 16, 1 John 1:9, Proverbs 28:13

B. Forsake (…Put away the evil of your doings…) - Vs. 16

Of course we are to forsake our sin but we must also put away the evil of our doings from before God’s eyes.

This means that we need to make right with others what we have done wrong. 

There are times when we must confess sins to others.

There are times when we are going to have to seek the forgiveness of others. Matthew 5:23-24

C. Learn (…to do well…) - Vs. 17

We must also learn to do well.

Our sins must be replaced with positive actions and attitudes especially towards those we have hurt in the past.

  • I am to seek justice, that which is right and fair to all.
  • I am to relieve those who are physically and spiritually oppressed.
  • I am to seek the well being of the fatherless and the widow.  Those who are down and out are not to be exploited, but helped.

2. WE HAVE CLEANUP WHEN WE ACCEPT GOD'S INVITATION FOR CLEANSING - Vss. 18-20

A. THE WORK OF GOD - Vs. 18

Isaiah 1:18 - Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

God is saying “come to court with me”. “Let’s reason together.  He implies that we are to repent and to do as he says in verses 16-17.

God says though your sins be as scarlet, a red dye made from worms, He would make them white as snow.

He also said there sins be as crimson, a red colored cloth, He would make them as white as wool!

That is quite a miracle to make red of all colors into pure white!  It is quite a miracle to take our dirty filthy sins and make us totally clean.

How can God make such a promise?

It is because God washed the sins of believers away at the cross!  God can forgive because He was satisfied with the work of his son to pay for our sins. 1 John 4:10, 1 Corinthians 6:11

God can cleanse you from every sin and make you fit to worship at Christmas and all year round!

B. THE RESPONSE OF MAN (If ye be willing and obedient…) - Vss. 19-20

Are you willing to be cleansed?

Will you be obedient to confess, forsake, and make things right with others?

If you are willing to be obedient you will prosper spiritually!  You will be able to worship and God will accept and be pleased with your worship.

Vs. 20 – If you are not willing to repent, to let God cleanse you, you will suffer judgment.

WE NEED CLEANUP WHEN:

 

1. OUR ACTIONS REMIND GOD OF SODOM AND GOMORRAH - Vs. 10

Ezekiel 16:49.

2. THERE ARE MANY SACRIFICES, BUT A GOD WHO IS FED UP - Vs. 11

     Isaiah 29:13

3. THERE IS FREQUENT ATTENDANCE, BUT A GOD WHO IS INDIFFERENT - Vs. 12

4. THERE ARE MANY ATTEMPTS AT WORSHIP, BUT A GOD WHO IS GRIEVED - Vss. 13-14

5. THERE ARE MANY PRAYERS, BUT A GOD WHO WILL NOT HEAR - Vs. 15

     Isaiah 59:2 – Matthew 5:21-22 – Hebrews 12:14-15

 

WE HAVE CLEANUP WHEN:

 

1. WE HEED GOD'S CALL TO REPENTANCE

A. Confess (Wash you, and make you clean) - Vs. 16, Proverbs 28:13 - 1 John 1:9

B. Forsake (…Put away the evil of your doings…)

     Matthew 5:23-24

C. Learn (…to do well…) - Vs. 17

2. WE ACCEPT GOD'S INVITATION FOR CLEANSING - Vss. 18-20

 

A. THE WORK OF GOD - Vs. 18

     1 John 4:10, 1 Corinthians 6:11

B. THE RESPONSE OF MAN (If ye be willing and obedient…) - Vss. 19-20

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MATTHEW 1:1-17 – SPECIAL WOMEN

 

Matthew 1:1-17

SPECIAL WOMEN

 

There are some special women in my life.  My wife, Dottie, is of course, special and important to me.  My mom is also of special importance, as is my daughter, Donna!  The Lord has blessed me with two more daughters by way of marriage to my sons.  Carletta and Candace have also become special to me. And now we have two granddaughters, Nicole and Elyssa. I don't think I have to tell you that my granddaughter are special! J  (You may want to introduce your message by mentioning those special women in your life.)

 

In the genealogy of the Lord Jesus in Matthew 1, there are four special women mentioned.  They are, of course, special because of their being included in the lineage of our Lord.  But they are also special because they remind us of the types of people our Lord receives.

 

TAMAR (THAMAR) - THE FORGOTTEN WOMAN - Vs. 3

According to custom, Tamar was to have a husband from among her dead husband's family.  Although Judah promised Tamar a husband, he did not keep his promise.  She was forgotten on purpose! See the story in Genesis 38.

 

Many people feel like they have forgotten, especially during the holidays. However, the Lord Jesus died for all, forgetting nobody!

In a special way, He has not forgotten or forsaken those who have trusted Him as Savior. Hebrews 13:5

 

RUTH - THE FOREIGN WOMAN - Vs. 5

The book of Ruth in the Old Testament tells of this woman who was born a foreigner. First of all, she placed her faith in the Lord God of Israel (Ruth 1:16-18).  Later, she married Boaz.

 

Just as God received this foreign woman into the His Son's genealogy, God receives those who are foreign to church and/or Christianity into his family. One does not need to be brought up in the church in order to be received into God's family.  It's a matter of faith (John 1:12-13)!

 

BATH SHEBA - THE FALLEN WOMAN - Vs. 6

David and Bath Sheba committed adultery!  Her husband was allowed to die in battle.  This was a subtle form of murder.  However there was forgiveness for David and Bath Sheba. Their story is found in 2 Samuel 11-12.

 

As Christians, we often fall into sin.  Although God is not pleased, there is always forgiveness available (1 John 1:8 - 2:2)

 

MARY - THE FAITHFUL WOMAN - Vs. 16

Mary was a sinner just like the rest of us!

However, she was a woman of great faith and sterling character (Luke 1:26-38).

 

We Christians need to remember that faithfulness is a quality that is pleasing to God (2 Corinthians 4:2).

 

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LUKE 2:40-52 - GROWING UP

LIFE OF CHRIST #4 of 60

There is nothing more adorable than a baby.

There is nothing more tragic than a baby who never grows up, who remains forever a baby, forever a child.

 

There is nothing more exciting than a person being born into the family of God, which is, becoming a “born-again Christian”, a child of God.

There is nothing more disappointing than a born-again Christian that does grow and mature in the Christian life. 2 Peter 3:18

 

  

Vs. 40 – Luke tells us that Jesus grew up.  He increased in the important areas of spirit, wisdom and grace.  I believe that the Lord Jesus became more and more aware in his human mind, just who he was and where He came from.

 

I have entitled this message, Growing Up, because that’s exactly what Jesus was doing in the passage before us this morning.  His growing up is a reminder that’s something every Christian should be doing no matter how long we have been in the faith. Philippians 3:12-14

 

Let’s see how Jesus grew up, and try to follow His example.   

 

HE PURSUED HIS FATHER

 

Vs. 41 – Originally there were three feasts in Jerusalem that the men were required to attend during the course of a year. They were Pentecost, the feast of the Tabernacles, and the Passover.  By the time Jesus came, many Jews attended just one of the three festivals in a year.

 

It was Joseph and Mary’s custom to come to the Passover.

Joseph and Mary were a good example of setting a Godly example in the home.

Whatever example you set, your children will likely follow.

 

Proverbs 22:6 - Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

To “train up a child” you as a parent must set the example.   

 

Vs. 42 – At twelve or thirteen years old a Jewish boy was embarking on manhood.  Probably at thirteen, or perhaps as early as 12, a boy was admitted into the synagogue as an adult.

 

At this age the child was considered to be a “son of the commandment” 

 

Vs. 43-44 – How could this have happened?

It was really quite simple.

The family would have traveling with other families.

This was for safety in numbers as the group traveled through some dangerous areas.

A time and place was set for the group to leave.

 

Usually the women and children traveled ahead of the men.

Mary could have considered Jesus to be with Joseph.

Joseph could have thought that Jesus was with Mary.

Or, perhaps they thought that Jesus was with the neighborhood children.

Please bear in mind that Jesus was sinless.

He was never irresponsible.

The parents had no reason to think that Jesus was not in the group.

 

Vs. 45 – The parents of course, would have been frantic and returned to Jerusalem to see if they could find their son!

 

Vs. 46 – You can imagine the parents’ relief when they found the Lord Jesus.  You can also imagine their consternation that he hadn’t headed for home when he was supposed to.

 

Jesus was found in God’s house the temple.

He was sitting among the learned teachers of His day, and “soaking it in”.  He was both listening to the teaching and asking insightful questions. 

 

Vs. 48 – Was Jesus wrong?  Mary seemed to think so, because Jesus had inconvenience them.

 

But the Bible clearly teaches that Jesus was sinless, so this couldn’t have been wrong.

 

Vs. 49 – Jesus speaks to his mother about two very important topics – identity and priorities.

 

As to identity, at age 12 Jesus knew who he was.

He knew that He was the Son of God.

Therefore, Jesus realized that He had to be obedient to His heavenly Father ever more than He was to be obedient to his earthly parents.

 

That leads to his priorities.

I think that Jesus was basically asking his parents why they had so much trouble finding him.

Jesus said, “Didn’t you know I had to be about my Father’s business.

 

Jesus knew that it was time for Him to learn and grow.

So, he was in his father’s house doing just that.

All through His life, Jesus was about His Father’s business.

Whether He was spending time alone with His Father in prayer, or teaching, or healing, or training the disciples, or confronting His enemies, he was always about His Father’s business. Hebrews 10:7,

John 4:34

 

In the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus, yielded His own personal will to God, saying, “Nevertheless, not my will, but thine be done”.    

 

The phrase to be about my father’s business can also mean to be about my father’s house.

Jesus was the Son so He was concerned about being in, worshipping in, and learning in, His Father’s House.

 

The Jews of Jesus day would not have referred to God as their Father.  The Old Testament did not emphasize that truth, because it really wasn’t true on a personal basis until Jesus came.

 

Jesus could indeed call God “Father”.

And Jesus taught us to call Him, Father, as well.

On what basis can you and I call God, “Father”?

 

We can call God “Father” when we place our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior, as the one who died for our sins to give us eternal life.

 

When we trust Jesus as our Savior, believing in Him as the only way of salvation, forgiveness of sins, and eternal life, we are “born again” and born into the Family of God. John 1:12-13,

 

So, at the point of salvation God becomes our “Father” in an intimate way. Romans 8:15-16

 

If we are God’s children, shouldn’t be “about our Father’s House”?

Our Father’s house is where God dwells.

Our Father’s house today is very easy to find.

Our Father’s house is where God dwells.

God dwells inside of us.  We are God’s house.

We are God’s temple. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

 

Jesus says, I must be about my Father's business.

As we already saw, to do the will of God was the most important priority of Jesus' life.

 

The priority of Jesus is His Father's house, His Father's business. It is a must that He do what the Father wants Him to do!

 

Just think of what you and I will be saying if we follow Jesus’ example and say "I must be about my Father's business."

 

When things are a must, they get done!

With God's help, let's make the right things a must in our lives.

I need to learn to say, you need to learn to say, "I MUST!"

 

Vs. 50 – Notice that his parents didn’t understand.

And guess what?  Not everyone is going to understand when you start making sacrifices to do God’s will.

We have to decide. Are we going to please God or please man?

 

Jesus grew.

 

HE PURSUED HIS FATHER

HE PRACTICED SUBMISSION

 

The incident in the temple was over.

They went home.

   

Vs. 51 – Notice what hadn’t changed.

               Jesus continued to do what He was told.

 

When it came to specific issues concerning God, He obeyed God.  That’s why He had stayed at the temple.

When it came to living in the home His Heavenly Father had given Him, Jesus was submissive. He did as He was told.  

 

Jesus submitted to God first.

But He also submitted to those who were in authority over Him.

 

There is a lesson here, being submissive to God, being totally yielded to Him is important. Romans 1:21

 

But as we are submissive to God we will also be submissive to those who God wants us to be submissive to.   

 

  1. We are to be submissive to our parents when under their authority. Colossians 3:20  

 

  1. Wives are to be submissive to husbands. Colossians 3:18-19

 

  1. Churches are to be submissive to their leaders. Hebrews 13:17

 

  1. Everyone is to be submissive to each other. Ephesians 5:21

 

Remember, Jesus was superior to Mary and Joseph, but He submitted to them because He submitted to God first.

Not everyone you will be asked to submit to will be as good or as capable as you. 

But God will want you to submit to them because you are submissive to Him.   

 

Jesus was growing up.

HE PURSUED HIS FATHER

HE PRACTICED SUBMISSION

HE PROCEEDED TO MATURE

 

Luke 2:52 - And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.

 

Now we see that there was a normal process of development for our Lord. He grew in four areas that everyone of us should grow in.

 

HE GREW INTELLECTUALLY - wisdom

HE GREW PHYSICALLY - stature

HE  GREW SPIRITUALLY - favor with God

HE GREW SOCIALLY - favor with man

 

And we too, should grow in these areas:

 

· Intellectually - Continuing to accrue the right kind of wisdom.

The right kind of wisdom has the fear of God at the center of it.

Proverbs 9:10 - The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.

 

Proverbs 15:33 - The fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility.

 

· Physically - Taking care of our bodies.

· Spiritually - Continuing to grow in grace and knowledge.

Philippians 3:10 - That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;

 

  • Socially - Making friends and being a good testimony.

Romans 15:7 - Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.

 

Matthew 5:16 - Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

 

Jesus grew up.

HE PURSUED HIS FATHER

HE PRACTICED SUBMISSION

HE PROCEEDED TO MATURE   

   

Will you do the same?

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LUKE 2:1-20 – LET’S MEET THE ORIGINAL CAST

 

Each year at this time there are countless Christmas programs. There have been many people who have played the parts of Mary and Joseph, angels, and shepherds. But we can't improve on the original cast of characters who played themselves one night almost 2,OOO years ago.

Let's meet them, and the roles they played.

 

GOD'S PERFECTED PLAN Vss. 1-3, 6-7

 

JOSEPH'S SUBMISSIVE SERVICE Vs. 4

 

THE ANGELS' PRAISING PROCLAMATION Vss. 8-14

 

THE SHEPHERDS' ENTHUSIASTIC EVANGELISM Vss. 15-18, 20

1. They heard.

2. They believed. Vss. 15-16

3. They shared. Vss. 17-18

4. They rejoiced Vs.20

 

MARY'S REFLECTIVE REMEMBRANCES Vs. 19

 

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LUKE 2:25-35 – ONE MAN’S CHRISTMAS

 

People celebrate Christmas in various ways. (Elaborate on the different ways people celebrate the holiday.) There was one man who celebrated the first Christmas in a very fitting way. His name was Simeon.

 

HE WAS A GODLY MAN Vs. 25

 

HE HAD A GODLY MOTIVATION Vss. 26-27

The Spirit had told him he would not die until he had seen the Messiah. Also, the Spirit guided him to the baby Jesus in the temple.

 

HE HAD A GODLY MESSAGE Vss. 28-35

 

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JOHN 1:10-14 – JESUS COMES TO EARTH

 

Jesus came to earth! A summary of His ministry is seen here.

 

HIS RESIDENCE - Vs. 14a - A human body. He dwelt or "tabernacled" or "pitched his tent" among us.

 

HIS RADIANCE - Vs. 14b - "we beheld his glory..." (See Vss. 1-5)

 

HIS REJECTION - Vss. 10-11 - People didn't know Him. His own people didn't receive Him.

 

HIS RECEPTION - Vss. 12-13 - Those who receive Him as Savior become sons of God. They are born into God's family. (See John 3:1-7)

 

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