Summary: The purpose of this sermon is to motivate the hearers to affirm to others that when God speaks -what He says come to pass.

11 January 2009

U.S. Army Chaplain (MAJ) Ken Harris

Fortress Chapel

F.O.B. Sykes

Tall-afar, Iraq

BIG IDEA: When God speaks, what He says come to pass.

REFERENCES: Proverbs 14:23(KJV) In all labour there is profit: but the talk of the lips [tendeth] only to penury; Genesis 1:3 (NIV) And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light.

Isaiah 55:1 (ESV) God says “So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;

It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.; Leviticus 13:46 (ESV) Prohibitions about Leprosy; John 8:1-11 (ESV) The Woman that caught in the very act of adultery by the Scribes and Pharisees; Luke 5:12-16 ESV (The Cleaning of the Leper); Luke 7:1-10 (The Centurion’s Servant healed by the spoken Word).


II. READ THE PERICOPE: Genesis 1:1-5 (NIV);

III. READ THE TEXT: Genesis 1:3 (NIV) And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light.

IV. PURPOSE: To motivate the hearers to affirm to others that when God speaks - what He says come to pass.

V. SERMONIC THEME: “… When God Speaks …”

VI. INTRODUCTION: As some of you may recall, this past Tuesday (6 Jan 09), was the first day of the theme of Epiphany, which celebrates the shining forth of God in Jesus Christ.

On this First Sunday after Epiphany, we are given Only the start of the story of creation in Genesis 1.

We hear only of the beginning and day 1 of creation. Research indicates that this reading has been selected to fit with the other readings for this week … when we celebrate the baptism of Jesus.

******* TAKE 5 BEATS *******

MOVE 1: Our focus in Genesis 1, this morning, is on the description of pandemonium or disorder before God starts or commences the act of creation.

a. It is described in watery terms – the deep and waters.

b. This not only makes the link with the waters of baptism …

c. … but specifies creation in Genesis 1 as a matter of bringing order to a watery disorder.

d. This is significant because it shows ….

e. … the disorder out of which … God brings order in creation by simply … SPEAKING.

******** Take 5 Beats *******

MOVE 2: Now, in reference to speaking, during my sermon preparation, I came across a short story dubbed, Heavenly Voice Mail.

a. To be truthful, if we weren’t in Tal-Afar Iraq - …

b. … and we were back in the States – most of us could attest to having some sort of voice mail.

c. Because we have learned to live with voice mail as a necessary part of our lives.

d. But, have you ever wondered what it would be like if God decided to install voice mail? Imagine praying and hearing the following:

******* Take 5 Beats *******

MOVE 3: Thank you for calling heaven.

a. For English press 1

b. For Spanish press 2

c. For all other languages, press 3

d. Please select one of the following options:

Press 1 for request

Press 2 for thanksgiving

Press 3 for complaints

Press 4 for all others

e. I am sorry, all our Angels and Saints are busy helping other sinners right now.

f. However, your prayer is important to us and we will answer it in the order it was received. Please stay on the line.

******* TAKE 5 BEATS *******

MOVE 4: If you would like to speak to:

a. God, press 1

b. Jesus, press 2

c. Holy spirit, press 3

d. To find a loved one that has been assigned to heaven press 5,

e. then enter his social security # followed by the pound sign.

f. (If you receive a negative response, please hang up and dial area code 666)

g. For reservations to heaven, please enter JOHN followed by the numbers, 3 16.

******* TAKE 5 BEATS *******

MOVE 5: For answers to nagging questions about dinosaurs, life and other planets, please wait until you arrive in heaven for the specifics.

a. Our computers show that you have already been prayed for today, …

b. … please hang up and call again tomorrow.

c. The office is now closed for the weekend to observe a religious holiday.

d. If you are calling after hours and need emergency assistance, please contact your local pastor.

e. Thank you and have a heavenly day.

******* TAKE 5 BEATS *******

MOVE 6: Like the “HEAVENLY VOICE MAIL”, … Some people are like Voice Mail – They’re Just All Talk!

a. We all know folks that are … just all talk.

b. Some of these folks are our friends.

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