Summary: God has spoken His ‘Famous last word’ and the word is Jesus.
Famous Last Words 09-09-01
I remember when I was a young teenager, heading out the door of our house and my mum would say, ‘Take a raincoat, it’s going to rain.’
Of course, when you’re a teenager, raincoats are un-cool, so I would say, ‘Don’t worry mum, I wont get wet.’ To which my mum would reply, ‘Famous last words.’
Usually I would come home wet and cold with my mum making sure she got the last word in the conversation.
Today, we use the phrase, "famous last words," almost as a joke. It’s become a grim sort of humor we use to describe a person who thinks a situation isn’t dangerous, when; actually, it turns out to be a big mistake, if not fatal.
"Oh, don’t worry about that gun, it’s not loaded." ...Famous last words.
"I never wear seatbelts - they wrinkle my clothes." ...Famous last words.
"I’ll come to church later. Right now there’s too much going on in my life to worry about religion." ...Famous last words!
Some people are remembered more for their ‘famous last words’ than for anything else they may have done in their lives.
Sometimes the phrase is used, not as a joke, but as a way of saying - This is it folks! There is nothing better.
Advertisers use the phrase a lot. ‘Brand X, the last word in household cleaners.’ What they are saying is, ‘Look no further folks. This is the ultimate.’
This is the picture the writer to the Hebrews presents to us in the opening few verses of his letter.
He is saying, ‘Look no further folks; this is it. This is God’s Last Word. His ultimate revelation to mankind.’
God still speaks to us today but most of us at times think that it would be nice if God would speak to us in an audible voice.
Or if we are facing a major decision – the ‘handwriting on the wall would be nice.’
Then there would be no doubt about what God wants us to do.
Unfortunately, God doesn’t seem to relate to most of us on that basis, at least not very often. His efforts to communicate don’t always seem all that effective to us.
But ever since the creation of the world, God has wanted to communicate to people.
The design all around us in creation argues strongly for a designer. We can see God’s fingerprints everywhere.
The world around us can be seen as God’s ‘first words’ to us.
The starting point of His communication.
But how can we know more about Him personally? How can we know who He is? What His name is? Why did He create the world and put us in it?
The first verse of our Bible reading says, ‘Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets…’
God spoke to our ancestors by the prophets - The OT is our record of God’s communication through the prophets and we can learn something about God there.
But the problem is that the image we get of God in the OT is incomplete. It always seems to leave us wanting more.
(like falling asleep before the end of a movie)
The prophets only present us with small parts of the picture and can vary depending upon our understanding of the message.
But throughout the OT, God promises that one day He would reveal Himself fully.
Some day everyone could know Him personally because He would become like us, a person.
It’s almost like God, in the OT deliberately builds up our anticipation, our excitement and our expectations of the day when He would make His ‘Famous Last Word’ to us.
The writer to Hebrews goes on…’
‘…but in these last days he has spoken to us by His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom He also created the worlds.’
Before I entered the ministry, I used to work for Australia Post. And I remember when I was training to work in the post office. My head was full of all the products and services we offered.
I remember the first time I ever stood behind a post office counter, waiting with anticipation for my very first customer.
I really wanted to present a professional manner and help the customer by suggesting other services they may not know about.
Here he comes… You’re on your own now Chris.
What will he ask me for…? Maybe I’ll forget the procedure.
Postage rates, overseas money order to Tonga, certified mail, registered parcel to Istanbul.
He’s standing in front of me…
He’s opening his mouth…
He’s saying something…’Can you change 50c for me buddy, I need to use the phone?’
Not quite what I expected.
It was a bit like that when Jesus appeared on the scene in Israel.