ADVENT | Week 4 | PEACE | John 14:25-31
What is peace? Is it just the absence of war or conflict… or is it something more? Join us in our fourth week of Advent in John 14 as we discover how the peace of God that passes all understanding comes as a gift, not from within ourselves, but outside ourselves, from Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace.
It’s all about Jesus!
Date: December 19, 2021
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Thank you so much for listening in here at West Side. We often say that we love the word of God because it points us to the son of God. We hope these messages encourage you and equip you to love Jesus more. We also want you to be apart of a local church, we believe these messages are only supplemental, being apart of a local church is essential. Blessings.
ADVENT- 2021 PEACE- John 14:25-31
REVIEW> We are nearing the end of our Advent journey! We are getting closer and closer to lighting the Advent Candle! We have been looking at the traditional advent words that guide us to the arrival of Jesus!
- Hope- the confident assurance that what God has said will happen.
- Love- you before me.
- Joy- The supernatural delight that flows from following Jesus.
INTRO> Today’s topic seems on the surface to be close to last weeks, joy. And I feel a bit of the same way, standing up here and declaring that the word of the day is “peace” when… we i look around I don’t see peace.
- Most health experts have said that we have transitioned from a pandemic as the main concern to a mental health crisis.
- Anti-insomnia medication is up 25% from last year. 1 in 5 American said that their sleep has been greatly affected since the pandemic.
- Anti-anxiety medication has spiked with a 35% increase in prescriptions.
- “This kind of chronic stress brings about, for all those people who have never had anxiety before, it sort of overwhelms them,” Charles B. Nemeroff, professor and chair of the department of psychiatry at Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin told the Journal. “If you’ve lost your job, if you’re worried if you’ll have enough food for your kids, that will keep you up at night.”
APP> I think it’s safe to say that, Our peace has a missing piece. And I think its our understanding of it, The OED defines peace as “I. 1.a. Freedom from, or cessation of, war or hostilities; that condition of a nation or community in which it is not at war with another.” So by it’s very definition, Many of us define peace as the absence of something. But…. how is that going? But then there is another group of us… who don’t really view it as the absence of something but just the opposite, We view peace as the presence of possession of something:
Peace comes with the presence of or possession of:
- Control- a longing to have everything according to my plan.
- Approval– a longing to be accepted or desired.
- Comfort- a longing for pleasure
- Power- a longing for influence or recognition.
APP> The reality is, is that there is a disconnect between our head and our hearts. We KNOW that these things won’t really give us peace but deep down we actually BELIEVE they will. So what are we to do? Hopefully by now you’d start to realize that there isn’t anything that WE can do, that’s why Christmas is an announcement.
- “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. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10-11
- “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”- Luke 2:13-14
CONTEXT> Can I tell you something very interesting about that last statement… is the context and year that it is made. You see Jesus was born at the very height of the Roman reign… and particular under the reign of Ceaser Agusts. It’s very hard to put into word that impact that Rome has had on history, RomanNumerals we still use, we still use the words and forums of government like Senate, Republic, their Roads “all roads lead to Rome” You’ve got to understand, Ceaser was even considered a God! Here is the picture of a Roman coin “Ceaser, Son of God” (PIC) When Augustus visted Greek Asia in 21BC flyers and chants hail him as “the bringer of Glad Tidings and great joy!” and wait for it… “The King of Peace” You ready for this… Jesus was literally born during what is historically known as “Pax Romana” or “The Peace of Rome” (PIC)
CONTEXT> Now do you see how radical Jesus’ words are to his disciples in John 14? The last night of his earthly life with them? He tells us 3 things about this peace:
- Jesus’ peace is supernatural. “my peace”
- Jesus’ peace is a gift. “I give…”
- Jesus’ peace is better than the worlds.
The Word that Jesus is using here for peace would have made the disciples ears perk up. The root word is the word “Shalom”it means a number of things.. a blessings, perfection but it mainly means wholeness and to Hebrews it referred back to the garden of Eden. What as so significant about that? God’s presence!
Peace is the calm assurance that God is present and at work amidst the chaos. (*ILL> Kids asleep in the house during storms)
- What are you pursuing for peace?
- What lies are you telling yourself to justify that pursuit?
- What are you afraid of?
“Who among us will celebrate Christmas correctly? Whoever finally lays down all power, all honor, all reputation, all vanity, all arrogance, all individualism beside the manger; whoever remains lowly and lets God alone be high; whoever looks at the child in the manger and sees the glory of God precisely in his lowliness.” ― Dietrich Bonhoeffer, God Is In the Manger