Summary: The first in a series of Advent sermons. The hope we find in Christ
Years ago, there was a very wealthy man
• Who, along with his devoted son, shared a passion for art collecting.
• Together they traveled around the world, adding only the finest art treasures to their collection.
• Priceless works by Picasso, Van Gogh, Monet and many others adorned the walls of the family estate.
• The widowed father looked on with satisfaction as his only child became an experienced art collector.
• But the day came when war engulfed the nation, and the young man left to serve his country.
• After only a few short weeks, his father received a telegram that his beloved son had been killed while carrying a fellow soldier to a medic.
• On Christmas morning, a knock came at the door of the old man’s home, and as He opened the door, He was greeted by a soldier with a large package in his hand.
• He introduced himself to the man by saying, “I was a friend of your son. I was the one He was rescuing when He died.
• May I come in for a few moments? I have something to show you.”
• The soldier said “I’m an artist, and I want to give this to you.”
• As the old man unwrapped the package, the paper gave way to reveal a portrait of his son.
• Though the art critics would never consider the work a piece of genius,
• The painting did feature the young man’s face in striking detail,
• and seemed to capture his personality.
• The following spring, the old man became ill and passed away.
• The art world was filled with anticipation!
• Because according to the man’s will, all of the art works were to be auctioned.
• The day soon arrived, and art collectors from around the world gathered to bid on some of the world’s most spectacular paintings.
• The auction began with a painting that was not on any museum’s list.
• It was the painting of the man’s son.
• The auctioneer asked for an opening bid. The room was silent. “Who will open the bidding with $100?” He asked. Minutes passed with not a sound from those who came to buy.
• From the back of the room someone called out, “Who cares about that painting? It’s just a picture of his son. Let’s forget it and get to the important paintings.”
• Other voices echoed in agreement.
But the auctioneer replied, “No, we have to sell this one first.
• Now, who will take the son?”
• Finally, a friend of the old man spoke. “I knew the boy, so I’d like to have it.
• I’ll bid the $100.”
• The Auctioneer said “I have a bid for $100,”
• “Will anyone go any higher?”
• After a long silence, the auctioneer said, “Going once. Going twice. Gone.”
And The gavel fell.
• Cheers filled the room and someone said, “Now we can get on with it!”
• But the auctioneer looked at the audience and announced the auction was over.
• Stunned disbelief quieted the room.
• After a few moments Someone spoke up and asked,
• “What do you mean it’s over?
• We didn’t come Here for a picture of some old guy’s son.
• What about all the paintings?
• There’s millions of dollars worth of art Here!
• We demand that you explain what’s going on!”
• The auctioneer replied, “It’s very simple.
• According to the will of the father, whoever takes the son... gets it all.”
This week marks the beginning of the Advent season
• The word Advent means, "the coming of the Saviour"
• It’s a holy season for Christians
• It’s a period of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Birth of Christ,
• This is the season that we know as Christmas.
Traditionally The First Sunday of Advent is associated with Hope
• And the story that I just shared with you is in essence the story of Christmas:
• Whoever takes the Son gets it all.
• Hope is the assurance of something yet to come,
• Something to look forward to
• The Bible puts it like this:
God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; He who doesn’t have the Son of God doesn’t have life.
This is the source of our Hope
• The one who has the Son has it all.
• But what exactly is included in the word “all”?
The first thing that Advent promises is a new life in Christ
• This means we now know what God is like.
• When Christ came He gave us a living picture of who God is.