Summary: The Season of Advent reminds us to make a U-Turn in our lives and Walk His Way.
Title: Walk this Way / Live this Way
Text: Mark 1:1-8
Thesis: Advent is a season that reminds us to walk the Jesus Way.
In Mel Brook’s Young Frankenstein, Gene Wilder plays the part of Dr. Frederick Frankenstein, great grandson of the infamous, Dr. Frankenstein who was known for his work in reanimating the dead. Dr. Frankenstein is embarrassed to be related to his great grandfather so he changed his name to Fronkenstei. Then one day he received word that he had inherited his great grandfather Frankenstein’s estate so he traveled to Transylvania to inspect his inheritance.
At the train station he is met by a hunch-backed, bulging-eyed old man named Igor (played by Marty Feldman) who is there to pick him up and take him to the estate. When they arrive at the castle Dr. Frankenstein is eager to get settled so he said to Igor, “Let’s go.” Igor then took his bag and turning said, “Walk this way.”
Hence the famous Gene Wilder’s mimicking of Igor’s hunched over, exaggerated limping walk as he descends some stairs and makes his way to his room.
Shortly after seeing the film Steven Tyler, of Aerosmith, and his bandmates wrote “Walk This Way” which was immensely popular despite its dubious and nonsensical lyrics.
Walk this way…
Our text today speaks to the role of John the Baptist who was God’s messenger sent to prepare the way by announcing the coming of Jesus Christ, the Messiah.
I. The Way, Mark 1:1 (The Good News is about Jesus.)
(Our text begins, This is the Good News about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God…” Mark 1:1
A. The Good News is the Jesus Way to Salvation
Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one can come to the Father except through me. John 14:7 And…
B. The Good News is the Jesus Way of Hope
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.” Luke 4: 18-19 (Isaiah 61:1-2)
The Jesus Way of Hope plays out in two ways:
1. Hope in Jesus
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, for the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and proclaim that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the Lord’s favor has come and with it, the day of God’s anger against their enemies.” Isaiah 61:1-2 specifies just how this Good News played out in Jesus’ life.
Isaiah 58:6-8 specifies how Good News plays out in our lives. This is where the rubber meets the road…
2. Hope in Jesus through us
“No this is the kind of fasting I want: Free those who are wrongfully imprisoned; lighten the burden of those who work for you. Let the oppressed go free, and remove the chains that bind people. Share your food with the hungry, and give shelter to the homeless. Give clothes to those who need them, and do not hide from relatives who need your help.
“Then your salvation will come like the dawn, and your wounds will heal. Your godliness will lead you forward, and the glory of the Lord will protect you from behind.” Isaiah 58:6-8
The hope Jesus lived out during his lifetime did not end when he died, rose from the grave and ascended into heaven… that same hope plays out in and through us until he comes again. Jesus taught that very hope continues in and through us!
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit upon his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered in his presence, and he will separate the sheep from the goats. He will place the sheep at his right hand and the goats at his left.
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come you are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the beginning of the creation of the world. For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked and you gave me clothing. I was sick and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.”
Then these righteous will reply, ‘When did you do those things for you…’ And the King wills say, ‘When you did it to the least of these my brethren, you were doing it to me!’” Matthew 25:31-40