Reformation: Glory of God Alone

Posted: February 19th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Reformation: Glory of God Alone

<“Reformation: Glory of God Alone

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. APOLOGY: DEFENDING “GLORY OF GOD ALONE”
A. SUMMARY OF DOCTRINAL TRUTH

>1. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: WHAT IT IS (Ps 100:3; 19:1-4; 62:5; 97:9; 29:2; Prov 16:4; Neh 8:6; Deut 6:5)
>>Appreciation
>>Adoration
>>Affection
>>Attention
>2. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: WHAT IT IS NOT (Rom 1:18-19)

B. BIBLICAL SUPPORT
>1. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: OLD TESTAMENT (II Sam 7:23; Dan 9:17-19; Ps 79:9; 86:9; Jer 14:7; Is 42:8; 43:6-7; 48:9-11; 66:19; Hab 2:14; Mal 1:11)
>2. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: NEW TESTAMENT (I Cor 10:31; Phil 2:9-11; Jn 17:4; 12:27-28)
>3. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: HISTORICAL SUPPORT (I Tim 1:17)

II. ATTACK: BATTLE LINES IN HISTORY
A. APOSTOLIC ERA, AD 67

>1. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: CONFLICT (Rom 1:21-25)
>2. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: RESPONSE (Rom 11:36; 16:27)

B. REFORMATION, AD 1517
>1. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: CONFLICT
>2. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: REPONSE

C. TODAY, AD 2017
>1. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: CONFLICT
>2. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: RESPONSE (I Chron. 16:29; I Cor 6:20; I Pet 4:11; Acts 7:2)

III. APPLICATION: PROCLAMATION OF TRUTH
A. BENEFITS

>1. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: ACTIONS (II Cor 5:15; Lk 23:41; Josh 7:19; Gen. 3:12; Rom 4:20; I Jn 5:10; Jn 15:8; Phil 1:11)
>>Prioritizing
>>Confessing
>>Believing
>>Bearing Fruit
>2. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: ATTITUDES (Phil 4:13; Ps 50:23; 86:12; I Cor. 10:31; Acts 12:23)
>>Contentment
>>Praise
>>Blamelessness

B. RESULTS
>1. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: FOR SOCIETY (Jn 21:18; Is 24:15)
>2. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: FOR THE CHURCH
>3. GLORY OF GOD ALONE: FOR ME, PERSONALLY


Reformation: Justification by Faith Alone

Posted: February 12th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Reformation: Justification by Faith Alone

<“Reformation: Faith Alone

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. APOLOGY: DEFENDING “JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE”
A. SUMMARY OF DOCTRINAL TRUTH

>1. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: WHAT IT IS
>SOURCE? By God (Rom 3:23-24)
>GROUNDS? By Christ’s righteousness (Rom 3:25)
>MEANS? By faith Alone (Rom 3:26-27; 4:23-25)
>EVIDENCE? By good works (Eph 2:8-10)
>“Sanctification” & “Glorification” (Rom 8:30)
>2. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: WHAT IT IS NOT (Rom 14:23)

B. BIBLICAL SUPPORT
>1. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: OLD TESTAMENT (Ps 143:1-2; Is 26:3-4; 50:7-9; 53:10-11)
>2. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: NEW TESTAMENT (Acts 13:39; Rom. 5:1; Gal 2:16; 5:4)
>3. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: HISTORICAL

II. ATTACK: BATTLE LINES IN HISTORY
A. APOSTOLIC ERA, AD 67

>1. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: CONFLICT (Jas 2:24; 17; I Cor 15:1-2)
>2. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: RESPONSE (Rom 4:2-5)

B. REFORMATION, AD 1517
>1. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: CONFLICT
>2. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: RESPONSE

C. TODAY, AD 2017
>1. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: CONFLICT (Rom. 5:9; Heb. 13:12)
>2. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: RESPONSE

III. APPLICATION: PROCLAMATION OF TRUTH
A. BENEFITS

>1. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: FIRST SAVING FAITH
> “notitia” (knowledge)
> “assensus” (agreement) (Jas 2:19)
> “fiducia” (commitment)
>2. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: THEN WORKS FOLLOW (Mt 5:16)

B. RESULTS
>1. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: SOCIETY (Acts 20:21; Heb 6:1b; Mk 1:14-15)
>2. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: CHURCH
>3. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE: PERSONAL (I Jn 3:6-8)


Reformation: Grace Alone

Posted: February 5th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Reformation: Grace Alone

<“Reformation: Grace Alone

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. APOLOGY: DEFENDING “GRACE ALONE”
A. SUMMARY OF DOCTRINAL TRUTH

>1. GRACE ALONE: WHAT IT IS
>>>>Grace involves the spiritual condition of man Psalm 51:1-2
>>>>Grace involves God saving man 100% of His own free will (Eph 1:4-14)
>2. GRACE ALONE: WHAT IT IS NOT

B. BIBLICAL SUPPORT
>1. GRACE ALONE: OLD TESTAMENT (Ps 51:5; Jer 17:9; 13:23; Ezek 18:20; Is 43:25; Job 19:25; Ps 49:9,16; Lev 17:11)
>2. GRACE ALONE: NEW TESTAMENT (Eph 2:1; Rom 5:20; Col 3:6; II Thes 1:8-9; Eph 2:4-5; I Thes 5:9)
>3. GRACE ALONE: HISTORICAL SUPPORT

II. ATTACK: BATTLE LINES IN HISTORY
A. APOSTOLIC ERA, AD 67

>1. GRACE ALONE: CONFLICT (Rom 3:10-11; Ezek 33:12b)
>2. GRACE ALONE: RESPONSE (Lk 19:10; II Cor 4:3-4; I Jn 3:10; Titus 3:5)

B. REFORMATION, AD 1517
>1. GRACE ALONE: CONFLICT
>2. GRACE ALONE: RESPONSE

C. TODAY, AD 2017
>1. GRACE ALONE: CONFLICT
>2. GRACE ALONE: RESPONSE (Heb 9:27; I Pet 1:18-19)

III. APPLICATION: PROCLAMATION OF TRUTH
A. BENEFITS

>1. GRACE ALONE: WHERE WE WERE
>2. GRACE ALONE: WHERE WE ARE

B. RESULTS
>1. GRACE ALONE: SOCIETY
>2. GRACE ALONE: CHURCH
>3. GRACE ALONE: PERSONAL (Lk 18:13; Jonah 2:9; Eph 2:5)


Reformation: Christ Alone

Posted: January 29th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Reformation: Christ Alone

<“Reformation: Christ Alone

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. APOLOGY: DEFENDING “CHRIST ALONE”
A. SUMMARY OF DOCTRINAL TRUTH

>1. CHRIST ALONE: WHAT IT IS (I Tim 6:15)
>2. CHRIST ALONE: WHAT IT IS NOT (Jn 5:39-40; Mt 15:9; I Cor. 1:18-31)

B. BIBLICAL SUPPORT
>1. CHRIST ALONE: OLD TESTAMENT (Is 53:3-5,11-12; Ps 22; Heb 7:23-25)
>2. CHRIST ALONE: NEW TESTAMENT (Rom 5:9; 10:9-10; 8:34; I Tim 2:5)
>3. CHRIST ALONE: CHURCH HISTORY

II. ATTACK: BATTLE LINES IN HISTORY
A. APOSTOLIC ERA, AD 67

>1. CHRIST ALONE: DEATH & RESURRECTION (Acts 4:12; I Cor 15:3-4)
>2. CHRIST ALONE: APPROACHING DEITY (Heb 9:15; Heb 12:24a)

B. REFORMATION, AD 1517
>1. CHRIST ALONE: OPPOSED TO THE CHURCH
>2. CHRIST ALONE: PUSH BACK (Gal 1:6)

C. TODAY, AD 2017
>1. CHRIST ALONE: GOSPEL
>2. CHRIST ALONE: CENTRAL (Heb 1:1-3; 8:6; Jn 14:6)

III. APPLICATION: PROCLAMATION OF TRUTH
A. BENEFITS

>1. CHRIST ALONE: ONLY WAY OF SALVATION (Mt 1:21; Jn 1:29; II Cor 5:21; I Pet 2:24; Rev 1:5-6)
>2. CHRIST ALONE: ETERNAL LIFE (I Pet 3:18a; Rev 5:12-14)

B. RESULTS
>1. CHRIST ALONE: SOCIETY
>2. CHRIST ALONE: CHURCH
>3. CHRIST ALONE: ME PERSONALLY (Rom 4:7-8; Is 49:16)


Reformation: Scripture Alone

Posted: January 22nd, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Reformation: Scripture Alone

<“Reformation: Scripture Alone

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. APOLOGY: DEFENDING “SCRIPTURE ALONE”
A. SUMMARY OF DOCTRINAL TRUTH

>1. SCRIPTURE ALONE: WHAT IT IS
>2. SCRIPTURE ALONE: WHAT IT ISN’T

B. BIBLICAL SUPPORT
>1. SCRIPTURE ALONE: OLD TESTAMENT (Ps. 19:7-9; 119: 11-12, 130)
>2. SCRIPTURE ALONE: NEW TESTAMENT (II Pet 1:19-21; II Tim 3:16-17; Rom 15:4; I Jn 5:9; Mt. 22:29, 31, 33; Eph. 2:20; Ac 28:23; Heb 4:12)
>3. SCRIPTURE ALONE: CHURCH HISTORY

A. APOSTOLIC ERA, AD 67
>1. SCRIPTURE ALONE: EXAMPLE IN THE CHURCH (Acts 2:42; Mk 1:14-15)
>2. SCRIPTURE ALONE: ELEVATED (I Pet 1:23; II Tim 3:14-15; Lk 16:27-31; Deut 30:11-14)

B. REFORMATION, AD 1517
>1. SCRIPTURE ALONE: ABOVE THE CHURCH
>2. SCRIPTURE ALONE: SUPREME AUTHORITY

C. TODAY, AD 2017
>1. SCRIPTURE ALONE: DEFACTO REJECTION
>2. SCRIPTURE ALONE: REPLACMENT

III. APPLICATION: PROCLAMATION OF TRUTH
A. BENEFITS

>1. SCRIPTURE ALONE: AUTHORITY
>2. SCRIPTURE ALONE: CONFIDENCE (Mt 4; Deut 8:3; 6:16; 6:13)

B. RESULTS
>1. SCRIPTURE ALONE: SOCIETY
>2. SCRIPTURE ALONE: CHURCH (II Tim 3:1-5)
>3. SCRIPTURE ALONE: ME PERSONALLY (Is 55:10-11)


Reformation: Death of Western Civilization

Posted: January 15th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Reformation: Death of Western Civilization

<“Reformation: Death of Western Civilization

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. PRINCIPLES FOR EVALUATING CIVILIZATION
A. MAN’S THINKING

>1. ALMIGHTY “I” (Gen 3:5; Dan 4:30)
>2. IN THE “NOW” (not the “KNOW”; I Jn 4:5; Phil 3:18-19)

B. GOD’S FORMULA
>1. CHANGED SOUL (Phil 3:20; II Cor 10:3-6)
>2. CHANGED MIND (Rom12:2; II Cor 3:18)

II. PATTERNS IN WESTERN CIVILIZATION
A. WORLD OF AD 67

>1. POLITICS
>2. PHILOSOPHY
>3. ENTERTAINMENT
>4. ECONOMICS
>5. RELIGION
>6. SCIENCE
>7. EDUCATION
>8. MORALITY

B. WORLD OF AD 1517
>1. POLITICS
>2. PHILOSOPHY
>3. ENTERTAINMENT
>4. ECONOMICS
>5. RELIGION
>6. SCIENCE
>7. EDUCATION
>8. MORALITY

C. WORLD OF AD 2017
>1. POLITICS
>2. PHILOSOPHY
>3. ENTERTAINMENT
>4. ECONOMICS
>5. RELIGION
>6. SCIENCE
>7. EDUCATION
>8. MORALITY

III. PROBLEMS FACING US TODAY
A. WHAT IS THE CHURCH DOING?

>1. BATTLE CHRISTIANITY IS FACING
>>a. Against the world’s mindset
>>b. Against the world’s methods
>>c. Against the world’s meaning
>>d. Against the world’s motives
>2. WHY WE ARE LOSING THE BATTLE
>>a. Abandoned the Foundation of Truth
>>b. Abandoned the Power of the Spirit of God

B. WHAT ARE YOU DOING?
>1. INDIVIDUAL GROWTH IN GRACE
>>a. Repentance of our sin and lack of faith
>>b. Reliance on God
>2. CORPORATE RETURN TO NEW TESTAMENT
>>a. Recognize the battle for the mind/soul
>>b. Reformation of the church


Christmas 2016: Postlude to the Story

Posted: January 8th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Christmas 2016: Postlude to the Story

<“Christmas 2016: Postlude to the Story

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. PRINCIPLE #1 – LEAVE THE DIRECTION UP TO GOD
A. PROGRESSION

>1. GUIDANCE OF THE STAR
Mt 2:9-10 And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came and stood over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.
>2. GIVING WORSHIP
Mt 2:11a and on arriving at the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped Him.

B. PROVISION
>1. GIFTS FOR A KING
Mt 2:11b Then they opened their treasures and presented Him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh.
>2. GAMBIT OF WISE MEN
Mt 2:12 And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

II. PRINCIPLE #2 – LEAVE THE DEFENSE UP TO GOD
A. PROTECTION

>1. GUARDING
Mt 2:13 When they left, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the Child to kill Him.”
>2. GETAWAY
Mt 2:14-15 So he got up, took the Child and His mother during the night and left for Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: “Out of Egypt I called My Son.” (also Hos 11:1)

B. PROCLAMATION
>1. GULLIBLE KING
Mt 2:16 When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was greatly enraged, and gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.
>2. GRAVITY
Mt 2:17-18 Then what was said through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled: “A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.” (also Jer 31:15-17)

III. PRINCIPLE #3 – LEAVE THE DETAILS UP TO GOD
A. PROVIDENCE

>1. GUARANTEE
Mt 2:19-20 After Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, “Get up, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who were trying to take the child’s life are dead.”
>2. GAME PLAN
Mt 2:21-22a So he got up, took the child and his mother and returned to Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there.

B. PROSPECTS
>1. GAUNTLET
Mt 2:22b-23 Having been warned in a dream, he returned to the area of Galilee, to live in a town called Nazareth. So was fulfilled what was said through the prophets: “He will be called a Nazarene.” (also Jn 1:46; Isa 11:1; Acts 22:8; 24:5)
>2. GROWING
Luke 2:39-40 When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. The Child grew and became strong; He was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon Him. (also Lk 2:52; I Pet 4:10; Jn 20:30-31)


Christmas 2016: Witnesses After the Manger

Posted: January 1st, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Christmas 2016: Witnesses After the Manger

<“Christmas 2016: Witnesses After the Manger

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. JOSEPH/MARY – OBDEDIENT IN WORKING

A. IDENTIFIED WITH GOD’S PEOPLE
Lk 2:21 And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was named Jesus, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.
>1. CIRCUMCISON (also Lev 12:2; Gen 17:10-14; Josh 5:9; Is 52:1; Jer 9:25; Ezek 44:7,9)
>2. NAMING

B. IDENTIFIED WITH MANKIND
Lk 2:22-24 And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought Him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in YHWH’s Torah, “Every first-born male shall be called holy to the Lord”) and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the Law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.”
>1. PURIFICATION
>2. SIN OFFERINGS (also Lev 12:6-8; II Cor 8:9; Mt 2:1-12)

II. SIMEON – OBEDIENT IN WAITING

A. CHARACTER OF SIMEON
>1. PHYSICAL CHARACTER
Lk 2:25a Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, (also Lk 1:65; 2:20)
>2. SPIRITUAL CHARACTER
Lk 2:25b-26 and this man was righteous and devout, awaiting the comforting of Israel, and the holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. (also Is 40:1-5, 31; Deut 19:15)

B. BLESSINGS BY SIMEON
>1. BLESSING GOD
Lk 2:27-32 And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for Him according to the custom of the Law, he took Him up in his arms and blessed God and said,
“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel.”
(also Eph 2:11-21)
>2. BLESSING PARENTS
Lk 2:33-35 And His father and His mother marveled at what was said about Him. And Simeon blessed them. [In addition] he said to His mother Mary, “Behold, this child is appointed for the humbling and elevating of many in Israel, and for a target that is rejected (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.” (also Eph 3:11; Lk 18:9; I Cor 15:17)

III. ANNA – OBEDIENT IN WORSHIP

A. CHARACTER OF ANNA
>1. PHYSICAL CHARACTER
Lk 2:36-37a There was a prophetess, Anna bat-Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, and then as a widow eighty-four more years. (also Ex 15:20; Jud 4:4; II Kg 22:14; Acts 21:9)
>2. SPIRITUAL CHARACTER
Lk 2:37b She was always at the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day.

B. BLESSING
>1. THANKING GOD
Lk 2:38a And coming up at that precise hour she began to give thanks to God
>2. TESTIFYING OF MESSIAH
Lk 2:38b and to speak of Him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.


Christmas 2016: God’s Matchless Gift

Posted: December 25th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Christmas 2016: God’s Matchless Gift

<“Christmas 2016: God’s Christmas Gift

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

CHRISTMAS CELEBRATION

PRELUDE
Welcome and Prayer – Elder Bob Griffin
#200 John 1:16-17; 13:1; Romans 5:8; Ephesians 2:4-5; I John 4:9-10
#118 “Of the Father’s Love Begotten”

CELEBRATION: ANTICIPATION
#635 John 1:1-14
#123 “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”
#124 “Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus”
#125 “Joy to the World”

LIGHTING THE ADVENT CANDLES/CHRIST CANDLE

CELEBRATION: PROCLAMATION
#130 Luke 2:8-14
#131 “Angels, from the Realms of Glory”
#132 “Angels We Have Heard on High”
#133 “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing”

SERMON: “UNDER THE TREE”

BRIEF BREAK and SHARING CHRISTMAS ‘GOODIES’

CELEBRATION: ADORATION
#142 Matthew 1:18-23
#143 “Infant Holy, Infant Lowly”
#144 “How Great Our Joy”
#145 “O Come, All Ye Faithful”

CELEBRATION: CONTEMPLATION
#636 Matthew 2:1-12
#160 “Lo! How a Rose E’er Blooming”
#157 “Away in a Manger”
#147 “Silent Night! Holy Night!”

OBSERVANCE OF THE LORD’S SUPPER

POSTLUDE
#653 John 3:16; Romans 5:8; I John 3:1; 4:8-12,18-19
#152 “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day”

CLOSING PRAYER – Elder Jim Garbutt

~~~ ~~~ ~~~

I. SURROUNDING GOD’S MATCHLESS GIFTS
1. THE WRAPPINGS – Lk 2:12 “And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling [burial] cloths and lying in a manger.”
2. THE TRIMMINGS – Lk 2:13-14 “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”
3. THE CONTENTS – Gal 4:4-5 “But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”
4. THE GIFT TAG – Lk 2:11 “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”
5. THE PURPOSE – Jn 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
6. THE PROPER RESPONSE – II Cor 9:15 “Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!”

II. SUBSTANCE OF GOD’S MATCHLESS GIFTS
1. GIFT OF THE MESSIAH – John 4:10 “If you knew the gift of God, you would have asked of Him”.
2. GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT – Acts 8:18-20 And when Simon saw that the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money. But Peter said to him, Your money perish with you because you thought that the gift of God might be purchased with money
3. GIFT OF SALVATION BY GRACE – Eph 2:8-9 “For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God”
4. GIFT OF PERSONAL ABILITIES – I Cor 7:7 “But every man has his proper gift of God one after this manner and another after that”
5. GIFT OF LIVING EACH LIFE FOR GOD – II Tim 1:6-7 “Wherefore stir up the gift of God, which is in you. For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind”.
6. GIFT OF ETERNITY IN HEAVEN – Rom 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord”.


Christmas 2016: Prelude to Christmas

Posted: December 18th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Sermons | Comments Off on Christmas 2016: Prelude to Christmas

<“Christmas 2016: Prelude to Christmas

Click Above to Listen!
A Sermon by Dr. Bob Griffin, Teaching Elder at Sovereign Grace Church

I. WE ARE ASTOUNDED BY THE GOSPEL
A. GOD’S TIMING

>1. PRELUDE
Lk 1:1-4 Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.
Lk 1:5-7 In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zecharias, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. They were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.
Lk 1:8-12 Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And Zecharias was troubled when he saw him, and fear paralyzed him. (also Col 4:10-11, 14)
>2. PRAYER
Lk 1:13-14 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth.”

B. GOD’S REMEDY
>1. PLAN
Lk 1:15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He must not drink wine or strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. (also Num 6; Mt 11:11)
>2. POWER
Lk 1:16-17 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (also Mt 11:14; 17:12; Mal 4:5-6)

Rest of the story + annunciation to Mary and her going to meet Zecharias and Elizabeth in next 30 verses, But we’ve talked of that last week. Part two of the Prelude to Christmas begins . . .

II. WE ARE REJOICING IN THE GOSPEL
A. GOD’S GLORY

>1. PERSONAL PRAISE
Lk 1:46-47 And Mary said: ‘My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.” (also I Sam 2:1-10)
>2. PERCEPTION
Lk 1:48-49 For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant; For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed. For He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name. (also Lk 11:27-28; 8:19-21)

B. GOD’S MERCY
>1. PRESERVATION
Lk 1:50 His mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation.
>2. PROVIDENCE
Lk 1:51-53 He has shown strength with His arm; He has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He has sent away empty.
>3. PROVISION
Lk 1:54-55 He has helped His servant Israel, in remembrance of His mercy, as He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed forever.

Now it is Zacharias’ turn to sing! Part three of the Prelude to Christmas begins after John the Baptist is born and Zacharias has back his voice . . .

III. WE ARE THANKFUL FOR THE GOSPEL
A. GOD’S DESIGN

>1. PURPOSE
Lk 1:67-69 “Now John’s father Zacharias was filled with the holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying: Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, for He has visited and redeemed His people, and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David,”
Lk 1:70-72a “As He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets, who have been since the world began, that we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us, to fulfill the mercy promised to our fathers” (also Ps 69:30)
>2. PROMISE
Lk 1:72b-75 “And to remember His holy covenant, the oath which He swore to our father Abraham: to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve Him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our life.”

B. GOD’S INITIATIVE
>1. PREPARATION
Lk 1:76 “And you, John, will be called the ‘Prophet of the Highest’; for you will go before the Lord to prepare His ways”
>2. PARDON AND PEACE
Lk 1:77-79 “To give knowledge of salvation to His people by the remission of their sins, through the tender mercy of our God, with which the Dayspring from on high has visited us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”

Conclusion: While we love to sing of the baby, shepherd, angels and wise men, let us stop this week before Christmas and focus once again on the Gospel and in the prelude to it
To WONDER at the Gospel, seeing God’s plan for the Messiah to come (and die) unfold
To REJOICE in the Gospel, magnifying God for His grace to the humble
To be THANKFUL for the Gospel, recognizing promises fulfilled and redemption at hand