Love, Joy, & Peace
Dec 11 - 24, 2016
What Your Soul Longs For
December 11, 2016 • December 11, 2016 • Pavi Thomas
SERMON NOTES (click arrow to the right to open) Main Idea: Christmas gives us three gifts: the Love of the Father, the Joy of the Son, and the Peace of the Holy Spirit. Don't miss out on them by looking for them in the wrong place. Sermon Notes: Matthew 2: 1-2, 9-11 We have this concept of Insiders and Outsiders, we versus they, us versus them. The Nation of Israel saw themselves as Insiders with God because they were His chosen people, but they were chosen to serve, not to be superior. God reveals the birth of His Son to Outsiders first. Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh point to the fact that the wise men were Arab, as that is the only place those spices can be found. Those Outsiders left everything they had to go and worship Him. Insiders and Outsiders don't matter - the only thing that does matter is our response to Jesus. Everyone has a relationship with Him - either walking toward Him or walking away. Matthew 2: 1-16 Herod was king of Israel - his purpose was to lead Israel to its purpose (which was waiting for and following the Messiah). Herod should have been the ultimate Insider, but he was focused on power and wealth for himself. Jesus was a threat to him. Jesus' coming is a threat to you, too... The Longing of the Soul: 1. To be Loved 2. To have Joy 3. To be at Peace As we grow up, we start to figure out things we can do to "meet," these Longings, but they often lead to sinful, not God-honoring habits/behaviors. When Jesus shows up and tells you these are the wrong habits, He threatens the self and the life you've created. Feeling threatened can make you crazy - Herod killed his own wife and two sons when he felt threatened. Herod's Responses to Jesus: 1. Fear 2. Deception 3. Murder ...and we are really not that different. The Love of God condemns our sin and forgives our person at the same time. Jesus comes to invite us to the simplicity of authenticity. But it's not easy or instant - old habits die hard. So, how do we tackle these habits? 1. The Bible - being immersed in the Word makes Jesus real, vivid, trustworthy. 2. Trusted friends 3. Holy Spirit Christmas is the freedom to break these habits. The Love of God John 15:9-13 invites you to make yourself at home in His love and to love one another. When we disobey, He doesn't stop loving us, we just walk away from His love instead of making our selves at home in it. John 16:33 Christmas Gifts: 1. the Love of the Father 2. the Joy of the Son 3. the Peace of the Holy Spirit Don't miss the gift of Jesus. Application Questions: 1. What are you celebrating this Christmas season? 2. Where are you looking to fulfill the Longings of your Soul? 3. Of the three ways to tackle our patterns - the Bible, friends, and the Holy Spirit - which do you need to give more attention in 2017? 4. How do you experience the Love of the Father, the Joy of the Son, or the Peace of the Holy Spirit?