Summary: This sermon discusses how we need to always be watching for the move of God in our lives and for opportunities to be used by him!!!
"Keep A Watch!"
If you have your Bibles would you turn with me please to the book of Luke, the book of Luke. The 3rd gospel, and if you could go to chapter number 2, and I want to read for you just one verse for your hearing on today, so drop down to around verse number 8, and it reads as follows from the New International Version, "And there where Sheperds over in the fields nearby, keeping watch over thier flocks at night." Amen. You may be seated in the presence of the Lord.
This text messes with me. It messes with me for several reasons. The first thing that messes with me is, why in the world are Joseph & Mary going to fill out a cenus when Mary is pregnant with child? But not only that also, if this is in fact the King of the World, King Jesus, why is he being birthed in such a God-awful, nasty, inhumane place as a stable? And finally, why in the world would God choose some lowly sheperds keeping watch over thier sheep as the first people to hear the good news of Christ’s birth? And that’s, that’s what’s really messing with me so for just a little bit of time I want to talk from the subject of, "Keep A Watch!" "Keep A Watch!" Hmmm...
My dear brothers & my sisters, if I could take you on a theological jaywalk through this text for just a few minutes on today I would submit to you that the reason that God chose the Sheperds tending thier sheep to be the first to hear of the good news of Christ’s birth was not just simply because they were poor & ordinary and that God wanted to use the unexpected, and to use them as an example that he does care about the poor, yes, that’s part of it. But I believe that an even greater reason why he used them as the initial recipient of the message is because they were fulfilling a job function and a calling that not only would Jesus fulfill but that I also believe that we are called to today and that is "To keep a watch over the sheep." Jesus in his ministry often compares himself to the role of that of a sheperd and he oftentimes calls us "his sheep" or "His flock." And that is the primary goal of a sheperd, to keep watch over his flock and to protect them from any hurt, harm, danger, or intruders.
Well I needed a little more clarity on this whole "watch" thing & so I did a little research as to the definition of "watch" in the Biblical conotation & what it really means because I needed some greater clarity on my job assigment. And I feel the need to drop a few things on you as to what the word watch really means... Can I go ahead & drop it? The first thing watch means is, "Forebearance of sleep." Or, "Going without sleep." The Bible says to "Watch and pray without ceasing." So it means to go without sleep. But not only that, watch also means, "Attention to, or close observation." God wants us to ever be watchful, paying attention to what’s going on around us, watchful for the enemy and his attacks, watchful for others, watchful for the move of God around us, watchful for his coming, he wants us to be ever mindful & observant of things. But not only does it mean, "Forebearence of sleep", not only does it mean "Attention to or close observation," but it also means, "To stand gaurd over or vigilantly protect." God wants us to be protective of things. Well preacher, why should we watch?