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Jesus: The Humility of His Advent

SERMON STARTER:

      In my 32 years of preaching I’ve composed over a hundred and sixty Advent sermons. I remind listeners of the familiar themes around Jesus’ birth: faith, humility, love mercy, and hope. I never tire of reminding people about the amazing circumstances around Jesus’ birth.  

      When my children were born, we secured the finest doctors and went to the best maternal and prenatal care hospital that was available at the time. Jesus had no medical specialists attending him. His mother, a teenager, had probably been present for the births of other children, but never for her own children. He was her first. She was alone with her husband when Jesus was born.

      We spend millions of dollars when an international dignity comes to town. The Creator of the earth and all that’s in it visited us in an animal shelter. Will animals be in heaven? They welcomed His Birth. When his Second Advent happens, He’ll be riding a pale white horse. Astoundingly, He came first into such a humble place, veiled in human flesh. This sermon emphasizes the humility of Jesus’ First Advent.

 

Pastor Phil Roland   <><<

December 13, 2008, Sheepfold Ministries

Pastor Phil Roland

 

Jesus: The Humility of His Advent

Philippians 2:3-11

 “We spend millions of dollars when an international dignity comes to town. The Creator of the earth and all that’s in it visited us in an animal shelter. Will animals be in heaven? They welcomed His Birth. Astoundingly, He came veiled in human flesh."        Pastor Phil

 

“He made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” Vs. 7,8

 

I.   THE GLORY OF HIS HUMILITY

        A. “God is Great!”

                        1. Cry of Muslim’s worldwide “Allah Akbar!”

                        2. Job declared it – Job 36:26

                        "Behold, God is great, and we do not know Him; Nor can the

                            number of His years be discovered.

            B. He was born with Vulnerability

                        1. At His Command Ten-Thousand Angels could appear

                        2. Farm animals witnessed and attended His birth

                        1. A Donkey could have stepped on Him

            C. How Little is Your God?

                        1. He poured Himself into frail human flesh

                        2. All the limitations of all humanity

                                    a. Could not speak, nor eat solid food

                                    b. Could not control his bodily functions

                                    c. Depended on a teenager for shelter, food and love

            D. How Small is your God?

                        1. Small enough to be born in a humble manger

                        2. Small enough to born in your heart

                                    a. Has He been born in yours?

                                    b. Does He have control of your life?

                        3. Do you have trouble humbling yourself?

                        4. He didn’t – v. 6b

                        “He did not consider it robbery to be equal with God,”

 

II.   THE GLORY HE DIDN’T CHOOSE

      “How silently, how silently, the wondrous gift is given. . .”

          A. Could have been Caesar’s Palace

                   1. Birthed on a golden Roman bed

                        2. Swathed by sheets of fine linen

                        3. Protected by Roman Praetorian Guard

 

            B. Could have Been Herod’s Palace

                        1. His Palace-Fortress had 90 ft. walls

                        2. Caught the cool Mediterranean Breezes

                        3. Exotic gardens, Roman Baths, Banquet Halls

                        4. A place of Death

                        5. Herod killed his own offspring

            C. The Glory of Angelic Choir and Announcement

                        1. Godless Shepherds, Bad Reputation

                        2. Celebrant’s of the Birth of the King of Kings – Luke 15:2

                                    "This Man receives sinners and eats with them."     

                                    a. He preached, lived and ate with sinners

                                    b. He died for sinners – Romans 5:8

                                    “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while

                                      we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

                        3. Why Shepherds?

                                    a. They knew who they were

                                    b. Hardest people to told to are “good people”

                                    c. They were teachable

                                    d. They were honest enough they needed saving

                                    e. They were humble enough to Listen and Obey

                        4. God hides His Greatest Gifts in the Poorest of Packages

 

III.   THE GLORY HE GIVES TO US - Text

A. There are many Ironies and Paradoxes in Jesus’ First Advent

                        1. He Left Heaven’s Glory to give us His Glory

                        2. He came to a Stable to give us His Mansion

                        3. He endured human birth to give us Spiritual Birth

                        4. He had an earthly mother to give us a Heavenly Father

                        5. He became a Servant to give us Freedom

                        7. He became poor that we might be Rich

                        8. He was greeted by Shepherds at birth that we might be

                                    greeted by angels at ours

                        9. He was hunted by Herod that we might be delivered from

                                    Satan’s grasp

            B. We have received so much we give gifts at Christ’s Birth

                        1. End a quarrel

                        2. Write a long overdue love note

                        3. Forgive an enemy

                        4. Be gentle and patient with someone who is angry

                        5. Listen

                        6. Speak kindly to a stranger

                        7. Enter into another's sorrow with God’s comfort

                        8. Take a walk with a friend

                        9. Lessen your demands on others

                        10. Give a soft answer even though you feel strongly

                        11. Apologize if you’re wrong

Jesus: The Humility of His Advent, Text:

Philippians 2:3-11

Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.

4  Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,

6  who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God,

7  but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.

8  And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.

9  Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,

10  that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,

11  and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

 

 

 

 

Prayer of St. Francis  

 

LORD:

Where there is hatred, let me sow love

Where there is doubt, let me sow faith

Where there is despair, let me sow hope

Where there is darkness, let me sow light

Where there is sadness, let me sow joy

O DIVINE MASTER,

Grant that I do not so much as seek to

Be consoled as to console

Be understood as to understand

Be loved as to love,

For it is in giving that we receive,

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned

And it is to dying that we are born to Everlasting Life!