Summary: The purpose of this sermon is to motivate believers to look back on their Old Life and share with others that TRUE Christianity involves RECEIVING and ACCEPTING Jesus Christ (as their Lord and Savior) rather than outward ATTEMPTS and CHANGES to look relig
5 October 2008
U.S. Army Chaplain (MAJ) Ken Harris
504th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade (BfSB)
West Fort Hood Chapel
BIG IDEA: TRUE Christianity involves RECEIVING and ACCEPTING Jesus Christ (as Lord and Savior) rather than outward ATTEMPTS and CHANGES to look religious.
REFERENCES: Acts 7:8 (NIV) Then he gave Abraham the covenant of circumcision. And Abraham became the father of Isaac and circumcised him eight days after his birth. Later Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob became the father of the twelve patriarchs. Genesis 17:10-14 (The Covenant God made with Abraham concerning circumcision); Malachi 3:1 (NIV) "See, I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come," says the LORD Almighty; 1 Kings 19:10 (NIV) He replied, "I have been very zealous for the LORD God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, broken down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too."; Philippians 3:4b-5 (NIV) If anyone else has reason to be confident in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, a member of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew born of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; Matthew 13:44-46 (NIV) – The Parables of the Hidden Treasure and the Peal - The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it; The Story of The Matchless Pearl (Author-Unknown); Galatians 6:13 (ASV) For not even they who receive circumcision do themselves keep the law; but they desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh; 2 Corinthians 11:18 (ASV) Seeing that many glory after the flesh, I will glory also; Galatains 5:12 (ASV) I would that they that unsettle you would even go beyond circumcision.
I. ANNOUNCE THE PERICOPE: Philippians 3:4b-14 (NIV)
II. READ THE PERICOPE: Philippians 3:4b-14 (NIV)
III. READ THE TEXT: Philippians 3:4b-5,8 (NIV) If anyone else has reason to be confident in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, a member of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew born of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee: More than that, I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things, and I regard them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ
IV. PURPOSE: To motivate believers to look back on their Old Life and share with others that TRUE Christianity involves RECEIVING and ACCEPTING Jesus Christ (as their Lord and Savior) rather than outward ATTEMPTS and CHANGES to look religious.
V. SERMONIC THEME: “Elijah’s Chair”
VI. INTRODUCTION: What would you say if I told you that on today everyone in attendance was going to have an opportunity to witness one of the greatest events in our Biblical History?
For today, as it is at every “Brit Milah” or CHILD CIRCUMCISION SERVICE, arguably one of the greatest prophets that has ever lived will be invited to attend this worship service.
And as always, he will accept the invitation.
******* TAKE 5 BEATS *******
MOVE 1: For you may recall that it is believed, to this day, within our Jewish Community that under the influence of Jezebel, …
a. … circumscision in the Northern Kingdom of Israel was about to be abolished, …
b. … when Elijah is said to have retired to a cave (in 1 Kings 19:10) ….
c. … and complained to God that Israel had forsaken the covenant of the Lord;
d. … whereupon God ordained that NO CIRCUMCISION should take place except in the presence of Elijah.
******* TAKE 5 BEATS *******
MOVE 2: A few weeks ago, I had the unique priviledge of attending my first ever “Brit Milah” or Circumcision Service.
a. And if you haven’t attended a Brit Milah – let me tell you, it’s quite a worship service.
b. Just to witness the atmosphere and the celebration of a little boy receiving his name publicly for the first time, in the presence of Elijah, and his love ones is unique to say the least.
c. As a born again believer, I watched and participated in this particular child’s most holy moment.
d. A moment that will, no doubt, have to be retold to him over and over again in order for him to understand that his parents, grandparents, and his community of faith – all participated in his defining moment.