Series: Advent, Christmas and New Year
The prophet Isaiah wrote: The people walking in darkness have seen a great light.
How dark was the darkness in the time of Jesus?
How bright was the light when he came to earth?
How dark is the darkness in our world today?
And what about us?
What does it mean, when we say that we are called to walk in the light?
Abraham was called to sacrifice his only beloved son?
In what ways is this similar to the sacrifice that Jesus made?
How does it differ?
We see how the event with Abraham in the Old Testament, is a foreshadowing of what Jesus would become in the New Testament.
God himself will provide the lamb.
This is what advent is all about.
This is what Christmas is really about.
The angels announced to the shepherds that a saviour had been born.
Why did he say a saviour?
Why did he not say your saviour?
What things do we do - because everyone else is doing it?
There is a danger in doing anything - just because everyone else is doing it.
There is also a danger in pretending.
The Magi arrive in Jerusalem, because they want to worship the new-born king.
Someone else says "Me too!" But he is only pretending.
We end by looking at a woman who was so, not pretending!
How would you reply, if someone asked you to explain the meaning of Christmas?
Who are you?
What are you?
What do you want to leave behind?
What do you want to embrace as you enter the New Year?
Will you live by faith?
Will you walk in the Light?
What about zeal?
Imagine that you planned a new initiative, but people just didn't get it:
A way to help people, but they just assumed that it would harm them.
Imagine that you had been advertising this new "thing" for 700 years, but people had not been engaging with the advertising.
Jesus' name Emmanuel means God with us.
In this message, we look at various people.
One did get it. Some never got it. And others did not get it at first.
Have you heard of the word shalom?
What does it mean?
What does it really mean?
How can we experience Biblical shalom?
We look at Jesus' story of The Lost Son.
Which of the two brothers was truly lost at the end of the story?
Which one experienced true shalom?