Sermons from February 8, 2015 to October 16, 2016 preached to the saints of the Lutheran Church at Christ-Elkhart and Faith-Hugoton in Kansas. All sermons prior to that date were preached either at Trinity Lutheran Church-Layton or First Lutheran Church-Tooele, Utah.
Dearly beloved of God,
Grace and peace to you in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
To hear how Jesus is the Lord come down to answer prayer, click on the MP3 audio link provided above.
"Let us call upon [His name] in every trouble, pray, praise, and give thanks."
Your servant of the Word,
Here is the [very rough] preaching manuscript.
SERMON for the 21st SUNDAY after TRINITY: October 24, 2010
"Lord, Come Down"
Grace, mercy and peace to you from God the Father and Christ Jesus, our Lord.
Dearly beloved of God,
TEXT: 46[Jesus] came again to Cana in Galilee, where he had made the water wine. And at Capernaum there was an official whose son was ill. 47When this man heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee, he went to him and asked him to come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death. 48So Jesus said to him, "Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe." 49The official said to him, "Sir [Lord], come down before my child dies." John 4:46-49
INTRO: Civility and respect in the world. Sir has almost become a dirty word.
The official of the king said to Jesus, "Lord, come down."
Faith and doubt, belief and unbelief at the same time.
He calls Jesus Lord, kyrie, indicating honor and respect for who He is and the power He wields. Yet, he tells Jesus to come down, as if His power is limited to a certain place.
So it is with us. We believe Jesus is Lord and God--that He died for our sins so we can live with Him in His Father's kingdom forever. Yet, in our times of unbelief and little faith, we worship and pray as if we have to call Him down. We live our lives as if He is not here with us, as if we can hide our sin and sinful desires from Him like Adam and Eve amongst the trees in the garden. And the devil loves nothing more than to make us think that God is not with us, that we have to do something to get His attention and earn the an audience with Him.
But Jesus, the Son of God, is the Lord come down" to dwell among us. Having been cast out of the Garden, out of paradise, out of the kingdom of heaven, God has come to us in Christ Jesus, not only to suffer and die for us, but to rise and ascend in order to send the Holy Spirit to us that all of us might be kept with Him and the Father now and forever in the kingdom of heaven.
God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit is here.
God the Father "I believe in God the Father Almighty--has made me and all creatures; that He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my limbs, my reason, and all my senses, and still preserves them; in addition thereto, . . . He provides me richly and daily with all that I need to support this body and life, protects me from all danger, and guards me and preserves me from all evil; . . . ." [SC]
God the Son ". . . behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age." [Matthew 28:20]
God the Holy Spirit Holy Ghost has called me by the Gospel, enlightened me with His gifts, sanctified and kept me in the true faith; even as He calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian Church on earth, and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one true faith; in which Christian Church He forgives daily and richly all sins to me and all believers, [SC]
The royal official wanted Jesus to come with Him. 50Jesus said to him, "Go; your son will live." By these words, Jesus is telling Him that He, that God will go with him and be with his son, because life comes only from God. It is only God that has the power of life and death.
The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him and went on his way. 51As he was going down, his servants met him and told him that his son was recovering.
This is a beautiful illustration of prayer. The official has a need he is helpless to fill. He recognizes the presence of God who is able to fulfill his need. He calls upon God to help. God gives him His Word that not only promises to fulfill the need, but corrects his unbelief. The official now really believes and as he goes forth in belief he receives what has been promised.
The Second Commandment, is all about God's invitation to "call upon [His name] in every trouble, pray, praise, and give thanks." Not because He is not here and we have to get His attention, but because He is here and wants to help us if we will only let Him. We can and should do so in all faith because, in Christ Jesus, He has come down to dwell with us and answer our prayers.
So we sing with the psalmist, the people of Israel, Jesus, and the Church:
"Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me." Psalm 139:7-10
"Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me." Psalm 51:11
And we go back to our daily lives, as did the royal official, believing that God is with us to keep us with Him and give us all that He has promised—the forgiveness of our sins; deliverance from death, hell, and the grave; and the resurrection of our body to life forever in heaven--in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
Insofar as this sermon is a true proclamation of the Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ, it belongs to Him and His Church. Therefore its use is free to all who deem it worthy and beneficial.
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