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Summary: This is a sermon which applies the timeless tale of the Christmas Carol to the Gospel message of Christmas.

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CHRISTMAS CAROL PAST PRESENT AND FUTURE

WE’VE JUST WATCH A TRAILER CHRISTMAS CAROL BY CHARLES DICKENS ADAPTED BY WALT DISNEY STUDIOS STARING JIM CAREY........

• Show Christmas Carol trailer

THE PLOT LINE : A ’ TIMELESS TALE ABOUT EBENEZER SCROOGE S A MISERLY OLD MAN WHO BELIEVES THAT CHRISTMAS IS JUST AN EXCUSE FOR PEOPLE TO MISS WORK AND FOR IDLE PEOPLE TO EXPECT HANDOUTS. HE DOESN’T BELIEVE IN ALL OF THE GOOD CHEER AND CHARITY THAT THE SEASON PROMOTES, AND HE MAKES SURE EVERYONE KNOWS IT.

IN THE NIGHT SCROOGE IS VISITED BY THE GHOST OF HIS FORMER BUSINESS ASSOCIATE , JACOB MARLEY -- A MAN WHO WAS AS GREEDY AND COLD AS SCROOGE IS. MARLEY WARNS SCROOGE THAT IF HE CONTINUES TO LIVE SO SELFISHLY, HE WILL SPEND ETERNITY WEARING THE CHAINS THAT HIS GREED HAS BUILT.

SO THREE SPIRITS VISIT SCROOGE SUCCESSIVELY: THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST, THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PRESENT AND THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS YET TO COME. THEY SHOW SCROOGE THE MAN HE USED TO BE, THE HARD TRUTH OF WHAT THE WORLD IS LIKE TODAY AND THE BLEAK PICTURE OF HIS FUTURE LIFE IF HE’S NOT PREPARED TO CHANGE HIS WAYS.

THE GOOD NEWS OF THIS TALE IS THAT SCROOGE AWAKES ON CHRISTMAS MORNING A NEW MAN. HE BECOMES JOLLY AND CHARITABLE, AND TRULY TURNS INTO THE MAN HE PROMISED THE SPIRITS HE WOULD BECOME. HE CARRIES THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS WITH HIM ALL THE YEAR ROUND. EBENEZER SCROOGE BECOMES A CHANGED MAN.

THE MORAL ELEMENT OF THIS TIMELESS TALE IS A STORY OF REDEMPTION, THIS STORY HAS MUCH IN COMMON WITH THE FIRST CHRISTMAS STORY WHEN THE CHRIST CHILD WAS BORN INTO THE WORLD HE CAME AND VISITED HUMANITY TO REDEEM US – TO AWAKEN US TO OUR CURRENT STATE WITHOUT GOD AND WITH HOPE IN THE WORLD, THE COMING OF JESUS IS A MESSAGE OF REDEMPTION WHEREBY GOD THROUGH JESUS DESIRES TO BRING LASTING CHANGE INTO ALL OUR LIVES.

• “ARE WE PREPARED TO BE CHANGED OR IS IT ALL SIMPLY BAH HUMBUG!”

YOU SEE JUST AS THE THREE SPIRITS OF PAST - PRESENT AND FUTURE SHOWED EBENEEZER THE PREDICAMENT OF HIS LIFE SET ON ITS CURRENT COURSE SO TONIGHT THE SPIRIT OF JESUS WILL SHOW YOU YOUR PAST PRESENT AND FUTURE THAT IF LEFT UNCHECKED WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT YOU IN THE END!

1. THE PROBLEM OF OUR PAST.

THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS PAST FIRST SHOWS SCROOGE....

• HIS OLD BOARDING SCHOOL WHERE HE WAS DESERTED BY FAMILY AND FRIENDS.

• THEN HE WAS SHOWN THE DAY WHEN HIS BELOVED, YOUNGER SISTER FAN PICKED HIM UP FROM THERE AFTER REPEATEDLY ASKING THEIR FATHER IF HE COULD COME BACK HOME.

• NEXT, SCROOGE WAS SHOWN AN EPISODE FROM HIS TIME AS AN APPRENTICE TO MR. FEZZIWIG.

• THE SPIRIT ALSO SHOWED SCROOGE THE DAY WHEN, AS A YOUNG MAN, HE LEFT BELLE, HIS FIANCÉE, AS HE HAD DEVELOPED MORE INTEREST IN MONEY THAN IN HER.

• FINALLY, THE SPIRIT SHOWED HIM HOW SHE MARRIED AND FOUND TRUE HAPPINESS WITH ANOTHER MAN. AFTER THIS VISION, SCROOGE, OUT OF ANGER, EXTINGUISHED THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST WITH HIS CAP AND FOUND HIMSELF BACK IN HIS BEDROOM.

IT WAS EBENEZER’S PAST WHICH HAD SHAPED AND MOLDED THE MAN HE WAS IN THE PRESENT AND AS HE LOOKED BACK HE WAS FILLED WITH REGRETS AND REMORSE.


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