Advent Week 3: “The Person of the Promise” Isaiah 9: 1-7

Advent Week 3: “The Person of the Promise” Isaiah 9: 1-7

INTRO> We are in week 3 of Advent. We have looked at the Promise, the Promise of God’s Presence and today we are going to look particularly about the person the promise is about If you know me, you know that i like movies which is probably also true of you as well. Particularly we as a people love superhero (PIC) movies, between the years of 2005-2014 there has been a total spent of $11.1 Billion in profit on Super hero movies https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-05-01/the-superhero-battle-for-the-bottom-line One article describe our fascination with super hero movies this way, “Superheroes are the Greek gods of secular modern life – otherworldly figures able to tackle the problems of this human world. Like the gods of Greek mythology, they can be flawed. In fact, some argue that we need them to be flawed. Part of their appeal is that we can relate to them, despite their being superhuman.” http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/entertainment/2013/06/why-are-we-obsessed-with-superheroes/ Very interesting isn’t it. We have a fascination if you will of being fixed, our greatest problem being solved or another words, we as a people have a fascination about salvation. But we can’t have somone who is completely different than us, we need somone we can relate to, understand.

TRANS> I would argue that this time of year exposes that more than anything, this Christmas story, tells the greatest story of salvation and even raises the standard.

Big Idea> The foundation of Christmas is that salvation is only found in Jesus Christ.

CONTEXT> We find that in our passage today in Isaiah 9. Chapters 7-9 are the single sermon God gave the prophet Isaiah to King Ahaz (last week) and the people of Israel. It’s about a coming savior, somone who will save the world. In Lukes Gospel, he uses this verse to explain the birth of Jesus and says that this if fulfilled in the person of Christ. “And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:8-11 As Luke attributes this prophecy to Jesus, we will look at the particular of what this means?

  1. Jesus is WHERE salvation is found. v2 & 6
      • “on them light has shone…” When you jump up to 8:19-22

you see the context that Isiah is talking about. The people and their king have totally forsaken God, they are turning to mediums and themselves for hope and salvation. It’s important to note that Isaiah says that “light” or salvation has shown “on them” and not from them. That means it has come from outside them.

      • “to us a son is given” Again, look at the word “given” it means it didn’t come from themselves but rather from somewhere else.

ILL> This flys in the face of modern day philosophy. We said that we where people fascinated by salvation. The “self help” industry makes somewhere around $11 Billion dollars. The most poplar self help book being “The Secret” It all boils down to being the same thing, “There is goodness, a spark inside you, find it and you can change”

APP> Salvation comes from outside of us not inside of us. Christmas completely challenges the cultures way of thinking. How does this practically help us, primarily with people.

      1. We see true reality. (people are broken)
      2. We walk in humility. (we never look down on anyone)

2) Jesus is HOW salvation is accomplished. v 6

      • “to us a son is given…” Again i want to focus on the aspect that Jesus came as a gift, this is the essence of the NT.
      • “ For God so loved the world that he gave his only son…” John 3:16
      • He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:32

ILL> There is a weirdness about receiving gifts isn’t there. When it’s your birthday and the time comes for you to sit down and open the gifts and everyone is watching. But what if someone gave your a book called “You need to Work Out” and “How to be Nice” You would have to say, “Wow, thanks, Im out of shape and mean.”

APP> Salvation is a gift to be received not achieved. How does Jesus do this? Remember the phrase about the “darkness” and the people living in the darkness? In Matthew 27:45 when Jesus is dying on the cross it says, “From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land.” Jesus took on the darkness (sin) and gave us light, Martin Luther called this the “great exchange”

3) Jesus is WHO God is. v6-7

      • Do you see these names listed here, there is also a play on words in v6 “child is born a son is given” Born and given.

This is what is called the “hypostatic union” Jesus was fully God and fully man. But why? Jesus was fully God and fully man in order to fully bridge the gap between God and man. We see this in the list of names that this child will have :

      1. Jesus is my counselor. “Wonderful Counselor” exceptional, or distinguished; or a supernatural counselor. [Lit. a wonder of a counselor! It is the nearest word Hebrew has to the idea of supernatural. Not just a distant counselor, but one who relates and walks in your shoes.
      2. Jesus is my protector. “Mighty God” This is the title of God meaning “he is strong, mighty valiant”
      3. Jesus is my creator. “Everlasting Father” better translated “father of Eternity” meaning the author of eternity. Colossians 1
      4. Jesus is my peace. “Prince of Peace” the hebrew word shalom, the perfection that was Gensis 1-2

APP> Jesus is God, we worship him as God. That forces a decision out of you and you can’t be neutral about it.

Notice “the government will be upon his shoulders…. there will be no end!”

*ILL> Malcom Muggeridge 1903-1990 was a british jounralist and lived through many wars and an important time in history, when looking back on it, he has a famous quote called gone with the wind:

“We look back upon history and what do we see?

Empires rising and falling, revolutions and counterrevolutions, wealth accumulating and and then disbursed, one nation dominant and then another. Shakespeare speaks of the “rise and fall of great ones that ebb and flow with the moon.”

In one lifetime I have seen my own  countrymen ruling over a quarter of the world, the great majority of them convinced, in the words of what is still a favorite song, that “God who’s made them mighty would make them mightier yet.”

I’ve heard a crazed, cracked Austrian proclaim to the world the establishment of a German Reich that would last for a thousand years; an Italian clown announce he would restart the calendar to begin with his own assumption of power; a murderous Georgian brigand in the Kremlin acclaimed by the intellectual elite of the western world as wiser than Solomon, more enlightened than Asoka, more humane than Marcus Aurelius.

I’ve seen America wealthier and in terms of military weaponry more powerful than all the rest of the world put together, so that Americans, had they so wished, could have outdone an Alexander or a Julius Caesar in the range and scale of their conquests.

All in one little lifetime. All gone with the wind.

England now part of an island off the coast of Europe and threatened with dismemberment and even bankruptcy.

Hitler and Mussolini dead and remembered only in infamy.

Stalin a forbidden name in the regime he helped to found and dominate for some three decades.

America haunted by fears of running out of the precious fluid that keeps the motorways roaring and the smog settling, with troubled memories of a disastrous campaign in Vietnam and of the great victories of the Don Quixotes of the media when they charged the windmills of Watergate. All in one lifetime, all in one lifetime, all gone. Gone with the wind.

Behind the debris of these solemn supermen, and self-styled imperial diplomatists, there stands the gigantic figure of one, because of whom, by whom, in whom and through whom alone, mankind may still have peace: The person of Jesus Christ. I present him as the way, the truth, and the life.”

Big Idea> The foundation of Christmas is that salvation is only found in Jesus Christ.

Application> One question:

      • Will you place all of your faith in the person of Jesus Christ today?

“Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”- John 6:28-29

Offer a Response.