Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Rise and Fall of Many

Feas and naughty dogs to everyone. May your day be scratchy and bright
and may you keep your nose out of the cold so it dosen't turn red.
I do hope all my friends and family will have a safe and delightful holiday. However you celeberate it, please enjoy your family! Kirk

The short of it: The Rise and Fall of Many Lk. 2:28-35
I. Intro:
A. Many great things have been said concerning the birth of Christ.
B. Text discusses some encouraging and disturbing information.
C. Lesson will deal with the prophecy concerning the 'rising and falling
of many.'
II. There is a great need to choose sides.
A. Joshuah said,
B. Jesus said,
C. Apostles said,
III. Great rewards for those who choose wisely.
IV. Those who fallen against the Christ.
A. Religious leaders during the life of Christ
B. False prophets
C. Discontented brethren
D. Evil rulers
E. Theories
V. Those who have risen with the Christ
A. Restoration plea
B. Those who trust in the authorative word of God.
C. Those who have died properly

The Long of it:

Rise and Fall of Many
Lk. 2:21-35
I. Introduction
Christmas. Christians are sometimes perplexed as how to celebrate. Go with the Santa Clause concept - you are secular. Go with religious - not commanded. Get in the middle you feel hypocritical. We know not the day Christ was born, We do not know if Mary rode a donkey to the inn. We do not know how many wise men there were. We do know the wise men did not visit Christ at the manger, no drummer boy played him a tune and a statue of Santa clause and his reindeer were not stationed outside the stable. We are not here to discuss how you celebrate or not celebrate this day. I pray that we have come to worship God because he gave us the privilege to do so. While we are here let us make good use of our time together as we drink today from the pure waters of life.
A. Many wonderful things were said concerning the birth of Christ.
1. Gabriel - Called, Emanuel, the son of the Highest, kingdom never end, save/sin.
2. Angels - Singing, ‘peace on earth good will to men.’
3. Wise men - King of the Jews.
4. Shepherds - reported angels proclaiming him as Christ the Lord.
B. Here in Lk. 2:28-35 Simeon disclosed the blessed and disturbing news.
1. All nations would rejoice in this child v. 32.
2. But, there would be great division in the world over him v. 34.
3. You will suffer soul wrenching sorrow v. 35.
C. This lesson will center around v. 34 - “This child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel, and for a sign which shall be spoken against.”
1. This lesson will reveal some of the realities of this prophecy by noting those who fell against Christ and those who rose up with Christ.
II. The Bible has always implied a need for you and me to choose sides.
A. From days of Old (Josh 24:15)
B. Jesus (Lk. 14:28) count the cost.
C. Apostles (Acts 5:29) obey God rather than men.
III. Ready rewards to those who choose wisely.
A. Listed in who’s who among people of faith (Heb. 11).
B. Blessing in this life and that to come (Lk. 18:30).
IV. Historical Perspective on Those Who Oppose Christ.
A. Religious leaders during the life of Christ (Matt. 27:39-43).
B. False Prophets (Matt. 24:11).
1. Some who proclaimed themselves the ‘New Messiah’ by acts of war on Rome.
2. Far eastern religions.
3. Islam - Muhammad, At first the infidels were those who were idolatrous, he soon turned against Christianity also.
a. More recently, in a December 8, 2001 Worldnet Daily article by Art Moore, it was reported that more than 50,000 Christians in the Central Sulawesi province town of Tentena were in imminent danger of attack by a paramilitary group called Laskar Jihad, a group whose goal is the total elimination of Christians from the region. According to Voice of the Martyrs, an organization that reports on Christian persecution, At least 600 homes and six churches in Tentena were burned during attacks in November of 2001, and 15,000 Christians were forced to flee. In Indonesia Laskar Jihad waged a violent campaign against Christians in neighboring Maluku province where at least 9,000 Christians have been killed since 1999. This religious cleansing can be found in all areas of the world where Islam has rooted itself. The quest for an Islamic world, taken by force if need be, still continues today, all in the name of Allah, and as taught and practiced by the prophet Muhammad.
4. Reverend Sun Moon, Jim Jones, David Koresh, Johnny Applewhite, et. al..
C. Discontented brethren (Acts 20:30).
1. Alexander, Hymaneaus, Diothrophes.
2. 1 Tim. 1:6; 5:15; 2 Tim. 2:2-4.
D. Evil Rulers (Acts 4:26).
1. Nero and other Roman Emperors.
2. Fascism & Communism.
3. Modern political terrorist.
E. Theories (2 Pet. 3:4).
1. Evolution
2. Form Criticism
a. Bible is not preserved well enough to be the Word of God.
b. There are supposed contradictions.
c. Apostles borrowed from ‘mystery religions’ to create Christianity.
3. Eccumentalism - all going to heaven, different denominations/religions take you there.
V. Those in Christ will overcome.
A. Restoration plea. - not a theory but advocated throughout Scripture.
1. Josiah (2 Chron. 34).
2. Jerm. 6:16 Restore ye the old paths.
3. Gal. 6:1 Restore such a one to repentance.
B. Seeker who puts their trust in the authoritative word of God will always rise to the top.
C. A proper death, gives birth to a glorious resurrection (Rom. 6:1-7).
1. Will you not raise Christ up in your heart? If so, you and I must die to our personal pleasures and submit to his will.

CONCLUSION
A. Why put faith in things which will make you fall?
1. Religions which oppose the Christ, Prophets who denounce his dietyship; Brethren who advocate change to ‘fit in’ with the rest of religions; theories which confuse, weaken, and destroy faith.
B. Be raised up so you may walk in newness of life.
1. Which category of people do you walk with this hour?

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