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ADVENT! Wake up and shop! (CC)

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FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT 2013 BY THE APOSTLE PAUL IN HIS LETTER TO THE ROMANS WHERE WE READ FROM CHAPTER 13, BEGINNING WITH VERSE 11: AND DO THIS, UNDERSTANDING THE PRESENT TIME: THE HOUR HAS ALREADY COME FOR YOU TO WAKE UP FROM YOUR SLUMBER, BECAUSE OUR SALVATION IS NEARER NOW THAN WHEN WE FIRST BELIEVED. THE NIGHT IS NEARLY OVER; THE DAY IS ALMOST HERE. SO LET US PUT ASIDE THE DEEDS OF DARKNESS AND PUT ON THE ARMOR OF LIGHT. LET US BEHAVE DECENTLY, AS IN THE DAYTIME, NOT IN CAROUSING AND DRUNKENNESS, NOT IN SEXUAL IMMORALITY AND DEBAUCHERY, NOT IN DISSENSION AND JEALOUSY. RATHER, CLOTHE YOURSELVES WITH THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, AND DO NOT THINK ABOUT HOW TO GRATIFY THE DESIRES OF THE FLESH. THIS IS THE WORD OF OUR LORD. LET US PRAY: GLORIOUS AND GRACIOUS GOD, MAY THE WORDS OF MY MOUTH AND THE MEDITATION OF EACH OF OUR HEARTS BE ACCEPTABLE IN YOUR SIGHT, OUR ONLY SOURCE OF HOPE AND COMFORT. AMEN. [TEXT TAKEN FROM THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, 1973, 1978, 1984, USED BY PERMISSION OF ZONDERVAN BIBLE PUBLISHERS] DEAR FOLLOWERS OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST: DID YOU WIN IN YOUR OFFICE POOL FROM THIS WEEK? I HAVE A VERY SMALL OFFICE TO POOL WITH, BUT I HEAR THAT ONE OF THE NEW OFFICE BETTING POOLS IS WHEN THE FIRST ATTACK IS GOING TO HAPPEN ON BLACK FRIDAY. THOSE POOR PEOPLE IN RIALTO MUST HAVE REALLY MESSED IT UP BECAUSE THE WALMART WASN'T GONNA OPEN UNTIL 8 P.M. BUT THERE WERE SO MANY PEOPLE THERE ON THURSDAY EVENING THAT THEY DECIDED THAT THEY HAD TO OPEN THE DOORS AT 6 O'CLOCK, 6 O'CLOCK TO KEEP IT CALM. AND THE FIRST FIGHT WAS AT 6:45 FOLLOWED BY TWO MORE WITH A POLICE OFFICER BEING WOUNDED. IT'S THE SAME THING THAT'S GOING ON ACROSS THE COUNTRY ON THAT DAY. THERE WERE PEOPLE BEING SHOT, POLICE OFFICERS BEING HURT, PEOPLE BEING TRAMPLED, AND PEOPLE JUST BEHAVING BADLY. PUSHING EACH OTHER ... SHOVING EACH OTHER ... AND ALL TO SAVE A FEW DOLLARS. AND BEFORE THAT THURSDAY, THERE SEEMED TO BE SUCH AN UPROAR ABOUT HOW WE COULD DESTROY THE GREAT FAMILY DAY OF THE YEAR. HOW WE COULD TAKE PEOPLE AWAY FROM THEIR FAMILIES ON THANKSGIVING BY OPENING UP SHOPPING OPPORTUNITIES. YOU KNOW WHAT SURPRISED ME ABOUT THAT CONVERSATION? WAS IN ALL OF THE CONVERSATIONS THAT I HEARD AND I FOLLOWED, EVEN AMONG MY FRIENDS, THERE WAS NOT ONE OF THEM THAT SAID: WHY AREN'T YOU GOING TO CHURCH ON THANKSGIVING DAY? - - - - - KIND OF AN INTERESTING THOUGHT WHERE WE HAVE COME AS A SOCIETY. WE LOOK AROUND US AND WE SEE PEOPLE BEHAVING BADLY EVERYWHERE. AND WE REALIZE HOW DIFFICULT IT IS EVEN FOR US NOT TO GET SWEPT UP IN THAT CURRENT. NOT TO GET SWEPT UP IN WHAT OTHER PEOPLE ARE SAYING AND WHAT OTHER PEOPLE ARE DOING, AND WHAT WE NEED TO DO AS THEIR NEIGHBORS AND AS PEOPLE IN THE WORLD. AND HOW QUICKLY IT IS FOR US TO FORGET WHAT WE NEED TO BE DOING AS GOD'S CHILDREN. AS THE PEOPLE WHO ARE WAITING FOR HIS RETURN. AS THE PEOPLE WHO HAVE RECEIVED WARNING AFTER WARNING IN SCRIPTURE THAT WE DON'T KNOW WHEN THAT DAY IS THAT CHRIST IS GOING TO COME AND PUT AN END TO THIS WORLD. WHAT WE'RE REMINDED OF AGAIN TODAY. WE HAVE THAT STERN WARNING TO THE PEOPLE OF NOAH'S TIME, WHO HAD TURNED TO THEIR OWN PASSIONS, WHO HAD TURNED TO THEIR OWN JEALOUSIES ... THEIR OWN ENVIES ... WANTING TO DO WHAT THEY WANTED TO DO AND THEY HAD TURNED FROM GOD. AND GOD CAME UP WITH A PLAN TO SAVE HIS OWN. AND HE PUT NOAH AND HIS FAMILY ON AN ARK. AND HOW TERRIFYING IT MUST HAVE BEEN. WE HEAR THOSE VERSES FROM SCRIPTURE. HOW EVERYTHING WAS DESTROYED ON EARTH. EVERYTHING WITH THE BREATH OF LIFE IN ITS NOSTRILS DIED. THE HUMAN BEINGS, AS WELL AS THE ANIMALS THAT WERE NOT ON THAT ARK. AND JESUS, IN OUR GOSPEL LESSON, TURNED TO THE PEOPLE OF HIS DAY AND SAID: YOU NEED TO REALIZE AND HEAR THIS! AND UNDERSTAND YOU DO NOT KNOW WHEN THE CHRIST IS GOING TO COME. AND IT'S GOING TO BE JUST LIKE IN THE DAYS OF NOAH. PEOPLE ARE GOING TO BE GOING OUT AND DOING WHAT THEY FEEL IS IMPORTANT. THEIR EVERYDAY ACTIVITY. THE THINGS THAT CONSUME THEM DAY IN AND DAY OUT. THEY ARE GOING TO BE GOING TO WORK. THEY'LL BE GOING TO BE GOING TO DO WHATEVER THEY DO DURING THE DAY AND THE LORD IS GOING TO COME. BUT WE, AS THE CHILDREN OF GOD, ARE TO WAKE UP AND REALIZE HOW IMPORTANT IT IS FOR US TO KNOW THAT FACT. FOR US TO REALIZE THAT CHRIST IS COMING. AND AS THE APOSTLE PAUL REMINDS US TO BEHAVE DECENTLY. TO ACT LIKE THE CHILDREN OF GOD BECAUSE YOU AND I KNOW THAT THE TIME IS NEARER NOW THAN WHEN WE FIRST BELIEVED. YOU AND I REALIZE THAT WHEN WE WOKE UP THIS MORNING, WE ARE ONE DAY CLOSER TO OUR DEATH IN THIS WORLD. OR THE ENDING OF THIS WORLD. YES! NONE OF US KNOWS WHEN THAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN. NONE OF US CAN IMAGINE OR PREDICT THAT DATE. BUT WHAT WE DO KNOW IS THAT TODAY I AM ONE DAY CLOSER TO MY ETERNAL REST IN CHRIST. TOMORROW, IF I HAVE THE GRACE TO WAKE UP, I AM ANOTHER DAY CLOSER TO MY DEATH AND EXIT FROM THIS TEMPORAL WORLD TO GOD'S HOLY HEAVEN. THE TIME IS NEAR. THE APOSTLE REMINDS US: IT IS NEARER NOW THAN WHEN WE FIRST BELIEVED. AND WHAT A REMINDER THAT SHOULD BE FOR US EVERY MORNING WHEN WE WAKE UP. THAT WE ARE CLOSER TO OUR EXIT FROM THIS SIN-FILLED WORLD. AND AS WE LIVE IN THIS SINFUL WORLD. WHAT IS IMPORTANT FOR US? IT TRULY IS TO STAY FOCUSED ON CHRIST. TO STAY FOCUSED ON HIM. NOT JUST PUTTING "CHRIST" BACK INTO CHRISTMAS. BUT PUTTING CHRIST "IN" TO OUR DAILY LIVES. ADVENT IS A SEASON AND A TIME FOR US TO PREPARE OUR HEARTS. IT TRULY IS AN IMPORTANT ASPECT OF THE CHURCH YEAR. AND I KNOW, WE AS CHRISTIANS FIGHT AGAINST CHRISTMAS WHICH SO MANY PEOPLE ARE ALREADY CELEBRATING AND HAVE BEEN CELEBRATING FOR WEEKS. BUT WE ARE ON THE FIRST DAY OF ADVENT: A SEASON OF REPENTANCE. AND I KNOW, I PUT ON THIS BLACK ROBE AND I HEAR FROM A NUMBER OF YOU: I HATE IT! I DON'T LIKE THAT BLACK ROBE! IT'S THE LAW. IT'S THE STERNNESS OF GOD. BUT WHO OF US DOES LIKE THE LAW? OUR SINFUL NATURE IS ALWAYS OPPOSED TO IT. WE DON'T LIKE TO HEAR THAT WE BREAK GOD'S COMMANDMENTS. WE DON'T WANT SOMEONE TELLING US THAT WE ARE PART OF THOSE PEOPLE WHO SOMETIMES ARE JEALOUS OF WHAT OTHER PEOPLE HAVE. WE'RE ENVIOUS OF OTHER PEOPLE. SOMETIMES WE ARE AS FRUSTRATED AS THOSE PEOPLE WHO WERE THERE ON BLACK FRIDAY AND IF WE ARE NOT USING OUR HANDS TO PUSH PEOPLE, WE ARE SCREAMING AT THEM WITH OUR MINDS AND IN OUR THOUGHTS WE'RE WISHING WE COULD JUST TRAMPLE THEM AS WELL. NO ONE LIKES TO BE REMINDED OF THAT. BUT WE'RE REMINDED OF THAT BECAUSE WE KNOW THAT GOD STILL LOVED US IN OUR SINFUL STATE. WHILE WE WERE STILL SINNERS ... HE SAVED US. LOOK AT THE GRACE OF GOD IN THE ACCOUNT OF THE FLOOD BY HIM SAVING NOAH AND HIS FAMILY, AND TELLING NOAH AND HIS FAMILY THAT HE WOULD NEVER AGAIN DESTROY THE WORLD WITH A FLOOD AND PUTTING THAT RAINBOW IN THE SKY AS AN EVERLASTING REMINDER OF GOD'S LOVE. THE REMINDER COMES TO US IN THE PERSON OF CHRIST WHO CAME INTO THIS WORLD TO BE OUR SAVIOR. AND TO LOVE US AND NOT LEAVE US IN THAT STATE OF SINFULNESS AND CONDEMNATION. BUT TO CALL US OUT OF THE DARKNESS OF SIN INTO HIS MARVELOUS LIGHT TO BE A PART OF HIS FAMILY AND HIS KINGDOM. TO LIVE IN THAT GRACE. TO KNOW AND TO UNDERSTAND ALL OF GOD'S LOVE. AND IN RESPONSE TO THAT WE LIVE AS GOD'S PEOPLE IN THIS WORLD. WE BEHAVE DECENTLY. KNOWING THAT THIS WORLD IS GOING TO END AND WHAT IS IMPORTANT ... IS WHAT IS ETERNAL. AND EACH AND EVERY DAY, GOD GIVES US THE STRENGTH BY HIS HOLY SPIRIT TO BEHAVE DECENTLY. TO LIVE AS GOD'S CHILDREN. TO GET UP EACH AND EVERY MORNING WITH THE REMINDER OF WHAT OCCURRED AT OUR BAPTISM: WHEN SATAN WAS DROWNED IN THE BAPTISMAL WATERS OF CHRIST. WHEN WE WERE BURIED WITH CHRIST INTO HIS DEATH. SO THAT WE ALSO WOULD LIVE WITH HIM THROUGH HIS RESURRECTION. THAT IS THE POWER THAT IS OURS THROUGH BAPTISM. AND THE HOLY SPIRIT, WHO IS WITH US, REMINDING US OF THAT STRENGTH THAT IS OURS ... THAT GOD GIVES TO US DAILY. THAT AS WE GET UP AND REMEMBER THAT BAPTISMAL WATER. AS WE SHOWER AND PREPARE FOR THE DAY WE REMIND OURSELVES AS WE PUT ON OUR CLOTHES DAILY THAT WE CLOTHE OURSELVES WITH CHRIST. WE PUT ON THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF CHRIST TO LIVE LIVES THAT ARE DEDICATED TO WHAT GOD WANTS. NOT WHILE BASE DESIRES WANT. NOT WHAT WE WANNA DO IN THE DARK SO NOBODY CAN SEE HOW DISGUSTING AND VILE WE TRULY ARE. BUT TO LIVE IN CHRIST'S LIGHT. TO SHINE WITH HIS BRILLIANCE IN A WORLD THAT IS TRULY DARKENED BY SIN. THAT IS TRULY DARKENED BY DEPRAVITY. BUT YOU AND I, CLOTHED WITH CHRIST, ARE TO BEHAVE DECENTLY AND SHINE AS GOD'S CHILDREN. AND WE HAVE SUCH A WONDERFUL OPPORTUNITY TO DO THAT ... AT THIS TIME TO EXPRESS WHAT CHRISTMAS IS ALL ABOUT. AND I DON'T THINK THAT WE, AS THE CHILDREN OF GOD, SHOULD TAKE FOR GRANTED THAT PEOPLE UNDERSTAND WHAT CHRISTMAS IS. OR WHAT IT IS TRULY ALL ABOUT. AND WE KNOW IT IS ABOUT GOD SENDING HIS SON INTO THIS WORLD TO BE OUR SAVIOR TO RESCUE US FROM SIN AND HELL AND TO MAKE US HIS OWN. THAT'S THE MESSAGE THAT WE PREPARE OUR HEARTS WITH AT THIS ADVENT SEASON. IT'S THE MESSAGE THAT WE SHARE WITH OTHERS ABOUT WHAT CHRISTMAS TRULY IS. AND WE DO THAT DECENTLY AND WE BEHAVE ACCORDINGLY. AND IT "IS" A DIFFICULT TASK - WHEN THE WORLD DOESN'T WANNA HEAR THAT MESSAGE; WHEN SATAN IS THERE TRYING TO TURN EVERYTHING AGAINST US AND TO MAKE US FRUSTRATED. BUT THOSE ARE THE TIMES WE COME BACK AND REFOCUS. THEY'RE THE TIMES WE LIGHT THE ADVENT CANDLES IN OUR HOUSE AND SIT DOWN TO DEVOTIONS. TO READ THE SCRIPTURE. TO HEAR WHAT GOD HAS TO SAY IN ENCOURAGEMENT TO US. SO THAT WE CAN CONTINUE TO FEED AND NURTURE OUR FAITH WHICH GOD HAS GIVEN TO US AND WHICH HE KEEPS ALIVE IN US. WE TRULY ARE DIFFERENT THAN THE WORLD THAT IS OUT THERE. WE UNDERSTAND THAT. BUT LET'S NOW LIVE THAT DIFFERENCE. LET'S WAKE UP FROM OUR SLUMBER AND BEHAVE DECENTLY. AMEN. LET US RISE. NOW MAY THE PEACE OF GOD, WHICH GOES BEYOND ALL OF OUR UNDERSTANDING, KEEP YOUR HEARTS AND YOUR MINDS AND ESPECIALLY YOUR LIVES IN THE ONE TRUE FAITH UNTO LIFE EVERLASTING. AMEN.

Video Details

Duration: 15 minutes and 23 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: R & M
Director: Jesus
Views: 46
Posted by: hischild on Dec 3, 2013

Shopping the pages of Scripture, we find how to prepare our hearts and lives for Christmas. Romans 13, verses 11 to 14 is the text for this Closed Captioned Sermon the first Sunday in Advent 2013. www.ziontorrance.info

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