Summary: Advent Sermon 1. The Lord came suddenly 2000 years ago 2. The Lord will come again suddenly (2nd Coming) 3. The Lord will come again THIS Christmas

Larry C. Brincefield

Sunday Morning, December 1, 2002

Title: "Suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come" Mal 3:1 (NIV)

Text: Malachi 3:1-7


1. When I was a young boy growing up, with my brother and sister, we LOVED Christmas!! We had some special traditions. On Christmas Eve we would drink cranberry juice and singing Christmas Carols while one of us kids would play the piano. My dad would read "Twas the Night Before Christmas" and the Christmas Story from Luke Chapter 2. We would get to open ONE present on Christmas Eve... usually something socks. We would go to bed... while visions of presents danced in our heads. We would start waking up around 3 AM...asking Mom and Dad if we could open our presents yet. They usually held out until about 5:30 AM when we would get up ...and Suddenly....

all our anticipation

all our preparation...

all our excitement was finally rewarded...

Because Christmas was finally here, and we could open our presents. Mom always made a breakfast casserole for breakfast... And then Mom and Dad would likely go back to bed for a nap, while we kids played and fought over our presents. Now that I’m a parent... we try to continue SOME of those traditions...

singing Christmas carols,

opening 1 boring present on Christmas Eve

Reading "twas the Night before Christmas" and also the Biblical story of Christmas.

But we’ve tried to curtail others...

like the 3 AM wake up time!!

We try to hold out until 6 or 7 AM.

Read Text: Malachi 3:1-7

I’ve entitled my sermon this morning, "suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come" taken from Mal 3:1 (NIV)


1. Suddenly the Lord Came...2000 years ago.

Over 2000 years ago, Jesus was born.

A. You would have thought that when royalty arrived...

people would have been more prepared.

Jesus was and is the King.

You would have expected Jesus to arrive in a more regal environment.

You would have thought that He would have been born in a palace...

His mother, Mary, laying in a special bed,

prepared to deliver the future King.

You would have expected there to be doctors and nurses

You would have expected the entire countryside would have been waiting for the delivery..

and then when the new King was born...

a great community celebration would commence.

foreign dignitaries would send their congratulations and gifts.

B. And yet, when this King was born

He came suddenly.

They were SEEKING the Messiah.

They had greatly anticipated His arrival

They KNEW He was coming...

and yet, the people WEREN’T prepared.

It wasn’t that they didn’t know He was coming.

They were given ample warning.

700 years before Jesus was born, In Isaiah 40:3-5 it says there will be "A voice of one calling: "In the desert prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. And the glory of the LORD will be revealed, and all mankind together will see it. For the mouth of the LORD has spoken"

400 years before Jesus was born, Malachi said, "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." Mal 3:1 (NIV).

And the prophesy was fulfilled when Jesus went to the Temple in Luke 2:22, "When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord"

Before Jesus’ ministry,

John was the one who was prophesied about...

He was the one who was again preparing the people.

2000 years ago, Jesus came on the scene suddenly, and the people weren’t prepared.

2. Suddenly, the Lord will come again!

A.It isn’t as if it should came as a surprise...

We know all about it.

2000 years ago the angels said, "Men of Galilee," they said, "why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven" Acts 1:11 (NIV)

Jesus Himself said, "At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other" Matt 24:30-31 (NIV)

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