Sunday, December 2, 2012

Gimme A Sign

[Slide #1] Sermon Title: Gimme a sign! (Sign=Reminder)
Sermon Text: Mark 15:29-31

29 And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, 30 Save thyself, and come down from the cross. 31 Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, He saved others; himself he cannot save. Mark 15:29-31(KJV)
[Slide #2] ☞The Story of the Exodus:

  • Israel had gone into to Egypt on good terms: Joseph was 2nd in command to Pharaoh
    • Jacob’s son
    • Isaac’s grandson
    • Abraham’s great grand son

  • Israel became too populated and hence a threat to Egyptians. Pharaoh decreed a genocide against Hebrew boys.

  • Roughly 400 years of life in Egypt had taken place & God planned to rescue His people from the bondage of slavery and farce of polytheism.

  • Moses, a foreshadow of Christ, left the riches of Egyptian blue-bloodedness, denounced his right to Pharaoh’s throne, and sided with Pharaoh’s enemy/servants: The Hebrews.

  • Although Moses left the household of Pharaoh, he didn’t leave all his training as a member of Egypt’s First Family: Military training, training in business/economics, philosophy and leadership development.

[Slide #3] ☞The Sign of Passover:
  • After many warnings, pharaoh still refused to release the Hebrews
    • God sent plaques, the last of which was death upon the first born of Egypt. Pharaoh was defeated and deflated and released the Hebrews.

  • God, clearly aware of who His enemies were and who His chosen people were, still required a sign...

  • A sign which reminded the chosen of their chosenness
  • This sign wasn’t merely a precaution against Israel’s forgetfulness
  • Yahweh-God wasn’t merely reminding Hebrews of Who saved them
    • Yahweh wanted them to remember Who Loved them! They were loved!
  • Israel was instructed to sacrifice a lamb and put some of it’s blood on the door for protection from The Angel-of-Death’s assignment.

  • Interestingly enough, the very firstborn sons who were spared, were required to be presented before The Lord annually.

  • It wasn’t a matter of being presented to God repeatedly
  • It was a matter of being reminded repeated that God presented them BACK to their parents.

[Slide #4] ☞Our Sign of the Cross
  • A reminder of a monstrous corporal punishment tool which was once outlawed due to its inhumane cruelty to convicted individuals.

  • It, rather than a manger, a fish, a saw or carpenter’s belt, a loaf of bread, a lamb, a light, a shepherd’s staff

  • When we remember Christ’s crucifixion and how he was handed over for judgement...we ought to remember that we were not.

  • The cross isn’t merely a reminder of how much God loved us.
    • The cross is a reminder of how much God still loves us

  • The cross is also a reminder that in losing our lives (not via martyrdom, but via service)...We show the deep gratitude for our faith, our freedom and our Savior’s amazing grace & love towards us.

This is interesting because the goal of crucifixion isn’t death, it is dissuasion.
  • I am not dissuaded from following God’s love and Christ’s example of selfless love. (It was gruesome, humiliating and slow)

[Slide #5] Questions & Challenges:
  • Will our new sign lie?
  • Will our street sign say that we meet on Saturdays if we meet on Sundays.
  • Will the sign of the cross betray our cross-less lifestyles?
  • How will your new perception of the Image of the Cross cause you to live differently. 
24 Then after Moses grew up, his faith made him refuse to be called Pharaoh’s grandson. 25 He chose to be mistreated with God’s people instead of having the good time that sin could bring for a little while. 26 Moses knew that the treasures of Egypt were not as wonderful as what he would receive from suffering for the Messiah, and he looked forward to his reward. (Hebrews 11:24-26)

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