Summary: 1- tis the season to get it right about righteousness 2- tis the season to get it right about getting right 3- tis the season to get it right about death
INTRO.- ILL.- One man said: Last year when I called my parents to wish them a happy New Year, my dad answered the phone. "Well, Dad, what’s your New Year’s resolution?" I asked him. "To make your mother as happy as I can all year," he answered proudly. Then mom got on, and I said, "What’s your resolution, Mom?" "To see that your dad keeps his New Year’s resolution."
What’s that saying? "If mama isn’t happy....."
ILL.- A BETTER WORLD IN THE NEW YEAR There was an article a few years ago in which a man gave his idea of a perfect world. He said, "In a perfect world you would feel as good at 60 as you did at 17. And you would be as smart at 60 as you thought you were at 17."
"In a perfect world professional basketball and baseball and football players would be complaining because school teachers were signing multi-million dollar contracts. In a perfect world potato chips would have calories, but if eaten with dip, the calories would be neutralized."
"In a perfect world, mail would always be early, and the check in the mail would always be for more than you expected it to be." The truth is: this is not a perfect world and it never will be! But it can become a lot better in this New Year for all of us.
ILL.- We have read of a college girl who, as she tacked the New Year calendar to the wall, said:
“It is going to be a beautiful year!”
“How do you know?” asked her roommate.
“Well,” she replied, “a day isn’t a long time, and I know it is going to be beautiful because I am going to take a day at a time and make it so. I will see that every one of those 365 days gets at least one beautiful thing into it through my efforts.”
Her New Year motto might be Ps. 90:12 “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom."
One day at time is a good way to take life. We often make big plans and sometimes those plans don’t work out.
ILL.- An ill-prepared college student taking an economics exam just before Christmas vacation wrote on his paper. “Only God knows the answers to these questions. Merry Christmas!”
The professor graded the papers and wrote this note: “God gets 100, you get 0. Happy New Year!”
Well, it’s true that only God knows the answers to the questions that we have in life and we often have plenty. Since He alone knows the answers to everything we should look to Him in this new year more than we ever have in the past.
PROP.- As we consider the new year, I believe it’s the season
to get it right. Get what right? Several things.
1- tis the season to get it right about righteousness
2- tis the season to get it right about getting right
3- tis the season to get it right about death
I. TIS THE SEASON TO GET IT RIGHT ABOUT RIGHTEOUSNESS
ILL.- Once upon a time, a perfect man and a perfect woman met. After a perfect courtship, they had a perfect wedding. Their life together was, of course, perfect.
One snowy, stormy Christmas Eve, this perfect couple was driving their perfect car (SUV) along a winding road, when they noticed someone at the side of the road in distress. Being the perfect couple, they stopped to help.
There stood Santa Claus with a huge bundle of toys. Not wanting to disappoint any children on the eve of Christmas, the perfect couple loaded Santa and his toys into their SUV. Soon they were driving along delivering the toys.
Unfortunately, the driving conditions deteriorated and the perfect couple and Santa Claus had an accident. Only one of them survived the accident.
Who was the survivor? The perfect woman survived. Everyone knows there is no Santa Claus and there is no such thing as a perfect man.
The true is there is no perfect person, woman or otherwise! The only perfection possible in this life is by the grace of God in Christ.
I Cor. 1:30 "It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption."
II Cor. 5:21 "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."
It’s all about Jesus. What’s is? OUR SALVATION. There is not one thing that we can do to merit or inherit our eternal salvation in heaven even though most people think this way!
ILL.- For example, what do you think of the actor Paul Newman? He was, by most people’s thinking, a pretty good guy and an excellent actor. He died on Sept. 26, 08 at age 83. Newman was a co-founder of Newman’s Own, a food company from which Newman donated all post-tax profits and royalties to charity. As of October 2008, these donations had exceeded US $250 million.