Summary: Christ came to break the chains of sin and death!
Sermon: "Chains Shall He Break" D Anderson
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The Lord Jesus once proclaimed of Himself,
"If the Son sets you free, you are free
indeed." Titus picks up on this when He
speaks of Christ’s journey to the Cradle, and
from the cradle to the cross. From Titus,
the second chapter, in Jesus name: “For the
grace of God that brings salvation has
appeared to all men.” (Titus 2:11 NIV)
RATTLE... RATTLE... CLANK.... CLANK....
With these horrifying sounds the candlelight
serenity of Ebenezer’s upper chamber was
shattered, and with it crumbled his
comfortable, pat view about life.
MOST EVERYBODY HAS SEEN AT LEAST ONE VERSION
OF THE CHRISTMAS CAROL. Already this year I
have seen the Muppet version, and just last
Sunday, I saw it presented again at the
The Christmas Carol has become synonymous
with this time of the year. We all feel good
after we experience it, written or presented,
and yet..... WHY?
LET’S LOOK AT THIS work by Charles Dickens,
and see what it has to say about the true
meaning of Christmas.
The central figure of The Christmas Carol is
Ebenezer Scrooge... His very name "scrooge"
stands for the worst in human selfishness.
Just look at old Scrooge at the beginning of
--> This man was materialistic. His
life... ALL LIFE!... measured its
worth on a profit and loss sheet.
--> Scrooge was selfish-- He wasn’t
concerned for the poor and
orphaned, only the building of
his financial empire.
--> And miserly!-- Making money,
money, money was his only
--> AND WITH MISERLY, CAME STINGY! He
would count the coals used at the
office, caring little that Bob
Cratchet was cold and miserable.
--> Ebenezer Scrooge was joyless--
BAH! HUMBUG! to everything bright,
beautiful, and festive.
--> This old, crotchety fellow was
harsh! His own and only nephew
was verbally assaulted and almost
roasted out of Scrooge’s office.
--> Amid all his wealth, he lived a
spartan life in the servant’s
quarters of his mansion.
To sum it all up Scrooge was driven to
accumulate wealth, and considered the world a
cold, hard place which worked according to
the survival of the fittest. “LET the
poor and orphans die, and decrees the
worlds surplus population!”--he was
analytic with figures, even to the point of
SHAME ON EBENEZER SCROOGE! SHAME ON THAT
MATERIALISTIC, TIGHT, COLD HEARTED MAN!
And yet, if we peel beneath the veneers of
our own lives, don’t many of us see the face
of the crotchety old materialist? How many
of us here today are using our time, talents
and treasures to build the Kingdom of God in
the world, and how many of us our building
our own kingdoms in the world!
Scrooge was building his kingdom-- Bah Humbug
to any other greater reality, but then came
the rattling and the clanking of heavy chains
and metal money boxes.
Scrooge is confronted with a world bigger
than his money making and selfish living.
The presentation of The Christmas Carol at
the Guthrie this year had Scrooge making some
comical remarks as he tried to settle into
his servant’s quarters for the night. Cracks
like, "I like the cold... it’s cheep!"
He also liked the dark...he liked living
alone. It all meant that he could hide in
his miser’s world.
BUT ENTER JACOB MARLEY-- a spirit, not
flesh....not of this world; and Scrooge’s
pat, little world begins to crumble. There
really is something bigger than this world...
than making money.... than living for
ABOUT 2,000 YEARS AGO, another personality
entered history, not with rattle and clank,
but with angel’s wings and songs. Not a
spirit, but the custodian of all that is
AND NOW FOR THOUSANDS OF YEARS, not just the
hundreds measured from the death of Dickens,
some have looked at the One who wore the
cradle and the cross, and they never look at
the world the same way again--people like
We know that something very big is out
there... watching... working.. seeking...
giving peace and joy.
Jesus is so different than Marley who
confronted Scrooge with the law. In Marley
the spiritual world pointed an accusing
finger at him.
We look at the Child of Bethlehem, and we see
sheer grace! John was inspired to say it
like this: 16 “From the fullness of his
grace we have all received one blessing after
another. 17 For the law was given through
Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus
Christ.” (John 1 NIV)
What a difference it makes in people when
they believe that Jesus TRULY IS the Son of
God and not just the product of an under-
cooked potato in the human imagination.
MY FRIENDS, let’s go again to the Bethlehem