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Summary: 1 of 3. John the Baptist’s parents knew with certainty the implications of their son’s birth. The events surrounding the birth of John the Baptist have implications for God’s people. But what are some implications? Observing God at work implies a need

OBSERVING GOD At WORK-I—Luke 1:57-80

Bob, a Federal Government Employee sits in his office & out of boredom, decides to see what’s in his old filing cabinet. He pokes through the contents & comes across an old brass lamp.

While polishing the lamp, a genie appears & offers to grant him three wishes.

"I wish for an ice cold Pepsi right now!"

POOF!

A Pepsi appears before him on his desk, so he picks it up & guzzles it all at once.

Now that he can think more clearly, he states his second wish. "I wish to be on a tropical island with my wife & kids surrounded by beautiful clear blue ocean waters, white sand beaches & a hammock attached to palm trees that swaying in the breeze"

POOF!

Suddenly he is on the tropical island he just described, with his entire family.

He describes his first 2 wishes to the family & tells them that he only has one more.

They all decide that they want to remain on the island together but Dad having to work, would have to leave. So they get Dad to ask the genie for his last wish.

Dad says excitedly, "I wish I’d never have to work ever again."

POOF!

He’s back at his desk in the office.

Observing the genie at work revealed some interesting things about Bob’s job.

Likewise, Observing God at work reveals the needs in our own lives.

John the Baptist’s parents knew with certainty the implications of their son’s birth.

The events surrounding the birth of John the Baptist have implications for God’s people.

What implications arise for God’s people from seeing God at work?

Implications drawn from seeing God at work.

1—Observing God at work implies a need for...

Expanded SATISFACTIONs(:57-59)

Explanation:(:57-59)Pleasures

:57—“Now the time had come for Elizabeth to give birth, & she brought forth a son.”

Mary had stayed with Elizabeth for 3 months(:56), until Elizabeth’s 9th month of pregnancy(:26, 37). Mary returned home just prior to Elizabeth’s delivery.

:58—“And her neighbors & her relatives heard that the Lord had displayed His great mercy toward her; & they were rejoicing with her.

Elizabeth’s neighbors & relatives heard of the mercy which the Lord had lavished upon her(:25). Though she had been in seclusion for the 1st 5 months(:24), others(those immediately around her; as well as extended family) knew that her pregnancy was of the Lord. Others were rejoicing with Elizabeth.

Their joy arose because 1)She was pregnant(in her old age—:18, 36-37) & because 2)She was pregnant with the herald to Jesus(:17)?

:59—“And it came about that on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, & they were going to call him Zacharias, after his father.”

It was customary for Zacharias & Elizabeth to circumcise their newborn child on the eighth day(after John’s birth).

“They” were going to name the boy ‘Zacharias’ after his father. Who are “they”? The priests/Sanhedrin/Family, etc./All..?

This is ‘what we’ve always done’.... traditionally—Why would it be any different now? Do we live like this?....Shocked when God shows us a different non-traditional way?

We are Shortsighted/Ignorant & Live in Darkness...Thus we need God’s living word

1Cor. 13:11-12— “When I was a child, I used to speak as a child, think as a child, reason as a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I shall know fully just as I also have been fully known.”

CELEBRATION—Joy

In God’s work even when we don’t catch the fullness of it.

Living for the moment only. Not allowing God to speak thru it.

LIMITATIONS— on sight.

By our separation from God...by our own devices, desires & expectations.

*Isa. 59:2— “But your iniquities have made a separation between you & your God, And your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He does not hear.”

RESULT—Oppose God (:59)

Why?

Not thinking we are opposing God but nevertheless, Directing our own steps—

Ignorance—Not looking beyond the present.

Not looking behind the fruit. Not looking for uses of the fruit.

Not wondering why God brought about this miraculous birth.

John the Baptist’s birth shows us that Despiritualized Satisfaction severely restricts our Christian celebrations.

1Tim. 1:12-14— “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service; even though I was formerly a blasphemer & a persecutor & a violent aggressor. And yet I was shown mercy, because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; & the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith & love which are found in Christ Jesus.”

Argumentation:

Jer. 10:23— “I know, O LORD, that a man’s way is not in himself; Nor is it in a man who walks to direct his steps.”

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