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Wise Men Still Seek Him

Eric Walsh
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Eric Walsh

Pastor and Physician

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  • December 12, 2020
    9:15 AM
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If you remember that the season a far as I'm concerned is always more joyous. If you start thinking about presents and. And the expenses of the holiday it can quite actually get quite depressing so we are going to focus on why. We celebrate this holiday there are many who. You know as as administering a kind of worry about Christmas because factually it probably it's unlikely that Christ was born in December the shepherds would not have been out in the field or they wouldn't that would probably have happened more in the spring. It is true that many pagan. Artifacts and issues have been attached to the holiday but I would be it would not be wise to ignore the significance of the birth of Christ especially at a time when the entire world focuses on it is one time of the year when secular artists who sing the devil's music all year will actually sing a hymn that praises the whore Jesus Christ and if you think of it that way this is the time of the year when the vandalism is. Probably at its easiest point someone I work asked this week. We were debating whether we should send all of our clinics Thanksgiving and someone said no Christmas is a Catholic holiday so we can't do it because everyone who works is air is not Catholic it's not actually Christmas is a Christian holiday many people of pretty much all all the nominations. Celebrate Christmas and some for many other I say but in America even people who don't believe in God celebrate Christmas nobody wants to give up on getting gifts and stuff so. It is an opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus Christ and to speak truth in a time when people need hope hopelessness is at a high right now Church. People are very frustrated the Penn Demick fatigue is truly setting in one of the reasons you see the numbers spiking across the country are a lot of reasons one of them is people have just kind of given up and they're going back to what keeps them comfortable and happy the church must always have an answer in these times of different my answer is Christ Jesus himself we must never forget that a script to reading today comes from Matthew Chapter 2 I want to read the 1st 2 verses and we're going to go through a bit of a can textual is ation of the 1st advent and look at how that relates to the 2nd Advent in a sense by the time this is all over. And hopefully gain relevance around this holiday season Matthew Chapter 2 verses $1.00 and $2.00 says Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea the days of Herod the king behold there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem saying where is he that is born King of the Jews for we have seen his star in the east and are come to worship Him we have seen his star in the east and are come to worship Him our message this Sabbath is untitled now behold the child now behold the Child Wise Men still seek Him Let us pray Father God we thank you for this opportunity to study your word to study the history and the truth of the 1st advent of Jesus Christ Lord I pray that the Holy Spirit will just now lead poor out your Holy Ghost and double and triple portion have the person of the Holy Spirit be with us now. Lord it once again I ask that you just make me a nail upon the wall a rusty sorry nail Lord but upon that nail I ask that you hang a portrait of Jesus Christ let Eric waltz not be seen or heard no father instead father let us hear word from the throne room of grace this is our prayer in Jesus is precious and holy name Amen so let's get into some history this is what Rome the empire of Rome looked like at the time of Jesus so there are 2 maps overlaid one on top of the other you can see all the way out here to Britannica purple the Roman empire eventually included even Rome Armenia and beyond you get you will notice that all of Spain. Is France and of course all of Italy were all a part of the Roman Empire there were many battles with at the time were called. The German the German. The vandals of it was actually one of the tribes but they call them brutes and all kinds of things which they fought with the Germans a lot the Roman Empire did and you can see that it stretched into Africa and all over the world when Christ was born he was born into a very very powerful empire he was born under a time when they ruled with an iron fist were crushed white oppressive then you will in his vision when he saw the statue the part of the body that now because of saw it represented the Roman Empire was the legs of iron and if you think about it 2 things about that truth one of them is iron is the strongest metal in the statue. And the legs are the strongest muscles in the body the largest I should say collections of collectively the strongest muscles in the body when you think about it prophetically what Daniel was telling us Christ would be born into which is then reflected in Revelation Chapter 12 is that Christ would be born into a kingdom that was more powerful and oppressive than Babylon Mido Persia or Greece when Jesus was born the world was plunged into spiritual darkness the pig and ways of the Romans followed the pagan ways of all the other previous empires the world was full of superstition in fact the gods of the time Jupiter and and Neptune and and Venus and all of the rest of them were literally people with the actual abuse and faults of people given the status of gods in other words when men looked to these deities for direction what they found were lying conniving cheating stealing beings to look up to so the image of God From that had been brought low but I mean other hand those who are supposed to have the truth the Jews who had not heard from a prophet in over 400 years from the end. Of the book of Baloch to the birth of Christ over 400 years there was silence not a prophet was heard they had killed the prophets of old men like Isaiah and Jeremiah had gone to persecution and so there was a silence of the Word of God for over 400 years and in that time the one group of people on the planet with the truth had lowered God to being and maniacal to radical obsessive and hard to God that you should fear and trouble and obey because you wanted to avoid punishment. So you look at the whole thing it was terrible as idolatry and revelry took over the world was looking simply for wealth and an excuse to party at this time darkness covered the world it was a time of great depression and only a select few actually lived decent lives under the harrowing power of the Romans in fact some argue that the families of the Senate of Rome were literally only 3 to 600 families in all of this vast empire who had a good life the spirit of prophecy in the book of the desire of ages and page 36 says this the deception of sin had reached its height this is at the time of Christ's birth all the agencies for depriving the souls of men had been put in operation the Son of God and looking upon the world beheld suffering and misery with pity he saw how men had become victims of see tannic cruelty he looked with compassion upon those who were being corrupted murdered and last say 10 to 18 seas were incorporated with men the bodies of human beings made for the dwelling place of God and become the habitation of demons the senses the nerves the passions the organs of men were worked by supernatural agencies in the indulgence of the violinist lust the very stamp of demons was impressed upon the countenances of men human faces reflected the expression of the legions of evil with which they were possessed such was the prospect look at this Such was the prospect upon which the world's Redeemer looked what a spectacle for infinite purity to behold. Before Christ came to earth he sat in the heavenly around looking down on a planet so debased in fact the Spirit of Prophecy tells us that it had been 2000 years since the world was in such condition what I want you to get from what I'm telling you is when you when you hear the story of the birth of Christ do not think that Jesus just randomly decided to plop down on Earth at a spend a certain time it was prophetic and it was intentional Christ so that he had more time to go in and save the world before like the end to the movie and it reached a point of no return in this time man had achieved so much the Roman Empire was such a beautiful brilliant place of been to Rome and I have to say that when I went to visit Rome I am still in awe of the architecture and complexity of what they designed and built the Coliseum the palaces the temples it was a phenomenal and amazing empire when you think of its achievements on those levels but of course it was also very spiritually dark for the 1st several 100 years the Roman Empire was a republic and it's interesting that just before the time of Christ birth is when finally it switches from a republic where the Senate really ruled that it was more of a representative government like the one we have basically taken from the Romans to run our republic and the United States and it became an empire there were civil wars there was lots of fighting and infighting there was conquering But but but there was one great empire emperor who had come to the throne and had not fully taken control from the Senate his name was Julius Caesar if you heard of them one of my favorite pleas by Shakespeare Julius Caesar and what interesting only happens is that he is murder. And then he were is assigned Don't miss this he is assigned divinity after his death Julius Caesar is made a god so that his son would be the Son of God the Son of God enter Caesar Augustus he is the earliest Roman figure mentioned in the New Testament he was the Emperor during the time of the birth of Christ he came to power in 63 b.c. how he was born in 63 b.c. sorry but he came to power in $31.00 b.c. after a period of political unrest he was such a successful emperor in bringing Rome together that in fact they gave him divinity while he was still alive and you can see here this is a actual coyness a Caesar Augustus Of course this is the July is how we get we get from Julius Caesar is named after the month of July and the month of August is named after a justice Caesar so that his day he still recognized this is who was in power when Christ was born and you can see on the other side where it says Davis ileus or divine Julie is still speaking to the divinity of his father with the solar flare there what is interesting is that Augustus was very very successful I want you to get this because Satan tries to contrast the success of this political ruler with the Satan understood the prophecy better than any so I'm sure he knew Christ was soon to be born and Satan was trying to set up a world that would be. Impervious to the mission of Christ if you darken the world enough if you give them enough gods if you give them a Savior before Christ is born made me want to real savior is born people won't see him they won't recognize him they won't need him. So Augusta see what is the language that they would use to describe him as a savior the language used to describe him was there good news or gospel in fact it comes from the Greek word un jillion which is where we get the word a Vangelis I'm from he had the gospel the good news of Augusta Caesar who instituted the Pax Romana of the piece of room Augustus after defeating the enemies of Rome was celebrated as a great save into the people Roman imperial theology advertised in poems and inscriptions and coins as we just saw images alter statues and structures he was made God while he was a god while he was still alive so in r. and 27 b.c. he became Augustus the Senate gave him this title because it in short it meant he was worthy of worship it was not just the name they felt he was truly divine this is one Tacitus says this in the framework of the great Roman historian he says in the framework of ancient liturgy he was invoked like one of the ancient national gods of Rome and he was surrounded with such an abundance of religious honor that many people thought there was nothing left for the worship of the heavenly gods when Christ was born Rome Civil War had ended power was restored to the Senate there was an emperor they were taking care of the citizens in a sense and their soldiers and it seemed as if there would be no need for anything better the poet Horace noted that while all previous The if occasions had occurred only after death upon you Augustus However while still among us we already bestow on us set up altars to swear by in our name and confess Listen to this that nothing like you will arise here after or is it ever arisen before now Satan had set up the world. So that when Jesus was born it would be a recalcitrant world to the idea of a savior the Roman Empire at its height Tacitus goes on as the most a vine Caesar who should consider equal to the beginning of all things as in the words they use for when everything was failing and falling into disorder and tending toward dissolution he restored it once more and gave the whole world a new or a Caesar the common good fortune of all the beginning of life and vitality in all the cities unanimously they had dropped the birthday of the divine Caesar as the new beginning of the year we asked Providence which has regulated our whole existence has brought our life to the climax of perfection in giving to us the Emperor Augustus whom it meant Providence failed with strength for the welfare of men and who being sent to us and our descendants as a Savior has put an end to war and to set all things in order and whereas having become God manifest He says Caesar has fulfilled all the hopes of earlier times it's a passing all the benefactors who preceded him were asked finally the birthday of God Augustus Caesar as been the whole world the beginning of good news concerning Him Therefore let a new era begin from his birth I want you to notice that a few things happened so Augusta Caesar's claims they call him Savior they say he is the good news the Gospel itself they say that the new era should start with his birth they say that he has brought peace to the world and they say that this would happen in perpetuity that their offspring Also would it would benefit from what he had done it was a set up church then they put in power this guy Herod the Great Julius Caesar put him in 1st put in a book huge building program of course and set of sacrifices to Augustus and he was made the king of the Jews. I want you to get that when Jesus was born there was no room for him we think there was no room for him in the inn I want you to understand that politically socially and religiously Satan had to work tirelessly to make it so there was no room for Christ not only in the halls of power but in the hearts of men when Jesus was born it was miraculous it was powerful Satan was at his height the empire of Rome was at its height Revelation Chapter 12 tells us that this beast the Rome would come after the child that the woman bore Christ was hunted by the government just as Isaiah says the government would be upon his shoulder Jesus was born into the most hostile conditions sacrifice that it took for the perfect god of the universe Jesus who spoke and the world came into existence he who had formed man with his own hands from the dust of the ground it was Jesus who did those things can you imagine as he looks down at the depravity of the world and he does not decide to wipe man out he does not destroy Augustus Caesar for being volunteered to godhood Instead Jesus the sides I will come to earth wrapped in the flesh of a little baby I will come and deliver man not all high horse not with great armies but I am going to come to earth and deliver men through love no weapon to Jesus of to carry the Bible describes no fistfight that he got into yet he liberated the world from the tyrant me of what was paganism and spiritual darkness by the power of the words he spoke the miracles he worked and by the relationships he formed. This holiday as you think about the 1st advent the 1st time Christ came in fullness to this earth I want you to understand it was not just some simple story that can be summed up in a manger setting on your neighbor's front yard this thing is deeper it is one of the most important aspects of the great controversy to understand what it really meant for Christ to leave the perfection of Heaven to come to this destitute earth in fact the Bible says it like this in Galatians 4 in verse 4 the Bible says but when the fullness of the time was come God sent forth His Son made of a woman made under the law I want you to get this time itself right pins prophetically full this comes the time there is a time out and eventually you get to a point in time when God says enough is enough time itself ripe in this it was full like a woman who's carrying a child there's a time that comes when the pregnancy can go no further and labor begins what the Scripture is the striving is that the world was in the kind of condition where it reached a point where it could go no further into darkness the Bible says that when the fullness of time was come let me just give you a spoiler alert church I believe we are at the fullness of time again I believe we are at a time when eventually God is going to have to step in the wickedness and depravity of this world the elevation of political figures the godless all around the globe the corruption the political systems the poverty the famine the disease all of the things that are happening the murders the crime. All of this points to the fact that once again Christ is in heaven looking down at Earth 2000 years before his 1st advent there was a big event in the flood and 2000 years after that event we are now at around that time and I want to submit to you that the fullness of time has come again the scriptures that it was made of a woman God to carefully choose Christ's parents his earthly parents can you imagine what it would have been like you know one of the most fun celebrated people in the Bible has to be Joseph Joseph really gets a bad deal if you think about it I mean not a bad deal in that he serves God But I mean a bad deal of how we look at him Joseph had to live his whole life with people whispering that that wasn't even his Joseph had to deal with the spiritual onslaught of the enemy it was Joseph that he angel Gabriel appeared to Joseph was want to go to Egypt Joseph had to figure all of these things out Mary of course didn't have an easy either no one would believe her story and yet they had to raise a child in the most difficult conditions let me tell you something if you're a parent right now you're also raising a child in the time of fullness the very way that Joseph and Mary were chosen to raise the baby Jesus you have been chosen to raise your children and this is a very serious thing if we are facing the fullness of time once again it is all the more important that we take seriously our role as parents. But of course how did these how did the wise men even know to come well remember Daniel had spent all that time in Babylon the middle Persia and and never could never have become a believer in the one true God That means these prophecies of Daniel would written and many of the people who were not of the descent of the Jews had understood this truth people of Persian descent and and Armenian descent people from that side of the world had a great deep understanding of truth then use the 70 weeks of the term upon the people upon the holy city to finish the transgression and to make an end of sins to make reconciliation for iniquity and to bring in everlasting righteousness and seal up the vision and prophecy and to and to anoint the most holy This tells you of his baptism in that prophecy and then the 925 now therefore know therefore and understand the from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to to build Jerusalem until the Messiah the Prince shall be 7 weeks and threescore and 2 weeks the street shall be built again on the wall even in trouble as times probably prophesied. And as rebuilding of Jerusalem in the short run but in projecting all the way out to the baptism and the beginning of the ministry of Christ we talked about this in a sermon recorded earlier this week so we thought I knew you can you imagine it's you know the prophecy tells us that Messiah would be cut off in the middle of that last week those wise men studied it and probably 506070 years before that time would come they began to look for Christ. So when you read these prophecies numbers 2321 he has not been held in equally and Jacob neither have you seen perverseness in Israel the Lord is God is with him and the shout of a king is among them they knew a king was coming based on these prophecies numbers 2417 I shall see him but not now I shall behold him but not not I there's a come a start a new to look for a star a star out of Jacob and a scepter shall rise out of Israel and just smite the corners of more and destroy the children of of of chef and of course this fit David somewhat but those who understood the prophecies understood to apply it further out they knew Christ was coming the 1st time so Matthew Chapter 2 verse one says Now when Jesus was born Bethlehem of Judea the days of Herod the king behold there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem saying where is he that is born the king of the Jews for we have seen his star in the east and are come to worship him they saw the prophecies fulfilled they made the difficult journey to Jerusalem and I want you to get something important here because there are those who are trying to teach you that Jesus is not God but I want you to recognize in Matthew Chapter 2 in verse 2 it says that they didn't come to meet him they didn't come to just give him gifts my Bible tells me that they came to worship Him Now here's where it gets interesting so I want to take you through them to the room where Mary has and this is probably not still the manger but let's just say it is because that's let's just say it is can you imagine when the people he was visited even in the manger that they would fall and worship Jesus surrounded by the stench of the animals the bleating of the sheep the moving of the house. Can you imagine that when they came in there was no royal perception there were no a fancy silk drapes or golden images or statues when they walked in to see Jesus it was a still a foul smelling dingy corner of the universe and yet even in that they could recognize Christ was worthy of worship in fact the Spirit of Prophecy tells us that when Lucifer himself saw Jesus in the manger when the devil looked upon him in the condition of his birth when Satan stepped into that room you followed Jesus his entire life when he looked at the condition Jesus was born into even Satan marveled that one in Christ who was once so elevated to heaven Jesus where angels would worship him and cry Holy holy worthy worthy Lucifer Satan when he saw him even he marvel that Christ would lead from such a high position come to such a loan because what the devil wanted was to exalt his throne and see above the throne of the most high God Satan only knew one direction and that was up to see Jesus in this condition baffled the same verse 3 when Herod the king had heard these things he was troubled all Jerusalem this tells us that they weren't expecting the Messiah to come they didn't understand the prophecies it was people outside of the church who understood the prophecies the church missed it when no those they would call heathen had gotten it. And when he gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together he demanded of them where Christ should be born and they said unto him in Bethlehem of Judea for thus it is written by the prophet and now Bethlehem Bethlehem and the land of Judah not the least among the princes of Judah for out of the shall come a governor that shall rule my people Israel then Herod when he had privily privately called the wise men he inquired of them diligently what time the star appeared and he sent them to Bethlehem and said Go and search diligently for the young child and when you have found him bring me word again that I may come and do what was Herod going to worship Him Herod was going to execute him in fact he tries to execute Matthew 121 and he shall bring forth the son and I shall call his name Jesus for he shall save his people from their sins his name and he is Yahshua which is Joshua which means Jehovah is salvation Augusta sees a want to be saved but a real saved it was born on his watch Instead he wanted to Augusta Caesar wanted to be God with mankind he wanted to be elevated to that position my Bible tells me in Matthew one in verse $23.00 Behold a virgin shall be with child and shall bring forth a son and they should call his name Emmanuel which being interpreted is God with us no Augusta sees and never becomes God He doesn't even come close to becoming God In fact he dies not long after Christ is born it was Satan's purpose to bring about an eternal separation between God and man but in Christ we become more closely united to dod that if we had never fallen by taking on our nature the Savior has bound himself to humanity with the tide that can never be broken you hear it at church. I want you to get it when we get to heaven we will still be able to touch the nail prints in his hand Christ will remain in human form we will be more closely bonded to Christ than if we had never then if mankind had never sinned all of the universe will marvel as we on in the new heavens a new earth walk with Christ and He is in our form and he and we and he is for ever that close to Christ he will for ever be Emmanuelle God with us and he is the word Augustus Caesar want his word is law to last but my Bible tells me in John 11 through 3 and verse 14 it tells me in the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God the same as in the beginning with God speaks to his creative power all things were made by him and without Him was not anything made that was made in verse 14 says and the word was what made flesh and dwelt among us and we held his glory the glory as the only be gotten of the Father full of grace and truth and justice Caesar's birthday was supposed to be the woman they remembered and yet it got December 25th wrong but nobody remembers when Augusta Caesar was born he was born on September 23rd everyone tries you know again I don't believe the temple to any visitors birthday but his birth his birth is the one that's remembered Augustus Caesar was supposed to have be the start of a new era but it wasn't b.c. and 80 are based on the birth of Christ not on the birth of Augustus he was a post of a potentially be remembered by all the world yet we still named a month after him but I'll tell you the very calendar is timed after Christ Jesus did all that and when they had opened their treasures they presented on to him gifts gold frankincense. Gold because he was a king frankincense as a symbol of worship and Mer assess a symbol of what with what they often used in a burial ritual it was as if each one of these 3 things was given to him symbolically to lay out his life and I would argue that one had to flee to Egypt these gifts were very important but Joseph to be able to afford the trip and stay in Egypt while he waited for it to be safe to come back to Jerusalem and to Israel the question I have for you today is this what will you give to these worthy more now than ever of worship the fullness of time is come and he is soon to return what will you give Jesus yes you can give ties and offerings and we should we must in a sense but I want to submit to you this holiday season this Christmas if you have not given Christ your heart your failing this holiday season it doesn't matter what else you give away make sure you give the Lord your full being this holiday season give your mind over to him give you a Netflix account over to him Give your playlist on your phone come on church every aspect of your life now must be given to him we must turn it over to him because he is the one was he and worship this holiday season don't hold anything back from the Lord Jesus Christ these men traveled far gave all risked their lives if Herod had a found them they would have been killed what have you done for your lord jesus closing is a great Christmas story a lot of happened during World War One of course World War One was a time of what we called trench warfare British troops were in one trench German troops were on the other side in a trench the German troops had taken some terrible losses as had the British side. The winter in Europe had kicked in it was now December men longed for home as the holiday season rolled in wishing they could be with their families this Christmas rather than with their fellow soldiers facing an enemy the stories of their childhood Christmases began to be told on both sides of the of the of the line in both trenches and on Christmas Eve The German soldiers decided that it was time to sing they called a truce from Christmas Eve to Christmas night so in the space of that peace the German soldiers began to sing a Christmas him the British soldiers couldn't believe it here they were singing hymns on a battlefield one British soldier says it like this they finished their kero and we thought that we ought to retaliate in some way so we sang The 1st Noel and when we finished they all began clapping and then they struck up another favorite of theirs oh $10.00 and bomb and so it went on 1st the Germans would sing one of their carols and then we would sing one of ours until one we started all Come All Ye Faithful the Germans immediately joined in the singing the same hymn to the Latin words address the Fidel this and this soldier recounts he says and I thought well this is really a most extraordinary thing 2 nations both singing the same Carol in the middle of a war church this holiday season the world seems to be at war our country has never been more divided maybe not since the Civil War But I want to submit to you that this mean just as these soldiers were able to do in the short bit of speech they had they made their focus and attention on worshipping Christ. I want to submit to you this holiday season and all of the hopelessness and all of the stress that you are feeling that there is never been a better time to praise the Lord this season take your family together open up the hymnals and begin to sing the songs of praises to our God nothing that will make this holiday season more joyful with all of its uncertainties that if you lift up the name of Jesus the shepherds the wise men they came and looked for him and they understood that he was the symbol of a lasting peace not just for an empire but for the universe I submit to you no matter how difficult your life is right now if you can lift him up and worship him this holiday season my Bible tells me that God inhabits the praises of his people invite Jesus in to your home this Christmas invite Jesus into your heart this Christmas give him the gift let's pray Father God we thank you for this opportunity to study your word and to better understand the story of the 1st advent Lord many of us are holding back from giving you all that is due to you Lord we will go out of our way to find the best give to our children and for our loved ones and for our significant others Lord we will we will see pave the the world and search the internet Lord you ask for none of that you only ask that we give ourselves our hearts and our mind in this holiday season father pray that we would be faithful. Receiving the gift of life from you or. Giving you the gift of our own. Free Jesus Christ. This media was brought to you by audio verse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse if you would like to listen to more sermon or leave a visit w w w audio verse or.

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