Sorry folks! I typed all the notes up on a blog post, but then somehow lost them. And I am too lazy to type them out again. But you can click on the link below and listen to a really good sermon. Today was a great day to be in the house of God!
There was a "mothering" day in the early church. It was on the 4th Sunday of Lent. People would go back to the church they were raised in and attend there that Sunday.
(Shannon shares other examples of Mothers' Days that were set aside for friendship, reconciliation and prayer, but you'll have to listen to the sermon to hear them. I didn't take great notes today.)
In 1914 Woodrow Wilson made it an official holiday (Mother's Day).
“Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you." Exodus 20:12.
This is the only commandment with a promise attached to it.
Talk about 3 Mothers in the Bible:
1. Hannah -- Sacrificial Love:
"In her deep anguish Hannah prayed to the Lord, weeping bitterly.11 And she made a vow, saying, “Lord Almighty, if you will only look on your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.” 1 Samuel 1:10-11
God blessed her with a son, and Hannah followed through with her vow. After giving Samuel up when he was weaned she saw him just once a year when she would bring him a new robe she had made him.
"I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. 28 So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.” And he worshiped the Lord there." 1 Samuel 1:27-28
2. Peter's Mother-in-Law -- A mother's Servant Love:
Jesus left the synagogue and went to the home of Simon. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Jesus to help her. 39 So he bent over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her. She got up at once and began to wait on them.
She got up and served Jesus, Peter and the rest of the ministry team (disciples and others) and then see who else showed up at her doorstep that night:
"At sunset, the people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of sickness, and laying his hands on each one, he healed them.41 Moreover, demons came out of many people, shouting, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew he was the Messiah." Luke 4:40-41
Peter's mother-in-law very likely was serving these people as they were healed. Hospitality demanded it.
3. Mary -- A mother's long-suffering and blessing Love:
"Then they asked him, “Where is your father?”
“You do not know me or my Father,” Jesus replied. “If you knew me, you would know my Father also.” John 8:19
The Pharisees bring up the controversy of Jesus' birth -- his supposed illegitimacy! Very likely Mary was there and heard this jab. She had to hear this his whole life even though it wasn't true and she had done nothing wrong.
"When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.”
49 “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”[a] 50 But they did not understand what he was saying to them.
51 Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart. 52 And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man." Luke 2:48-52
Jesus was (and is) perfect, but he still obviously vexed his mother!
"On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, 2 and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. 3 When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”
4 “Woman,[a] why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.” John 2:1-4
Mary and Jesus had a fun relationship. You can see this in the above verses. She probably vexed him a bit in this scene!
"Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples. 2 When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed.
“Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him? What are these remarkable miracles he is performing? 3 Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph,[a] Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.
4 Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own town, among his relatives and in his own home.” 5 He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. 6 He was amazed at their lack of faith." Mark 6:1-6
Mary had to see her son rejected by her community.
"Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman,[a] here is your son,” 27 and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home." John 19:25-27
Even on the cross Jesus cared for His mom.
Why did God allow Mary to go through Jesus' crucifixtion? Because He wasn't done with her yet. He had more blessings to give her.
"Then the apostles returned to Jerusalem from the hill called the Mount of Olives, a Sabbath day’s walk[a] from the city. 13 When they arrived, they went upstairs to the room where they were staying. Those present were Peter, John, James and Andrew; Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew; James son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. 14 They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers." Actts 1:12-14
Mary was with the disciples constantly in prayer. Now read the next chapter of Acts:
"When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting.3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues[a] as the Spirit enabled them." Acts 2:1-4
Mary was there at Pentecost! She was filled with the Holy Spirit.
(We recorded this at our kitchen table because church was cancelled today. We hope you will take time to listen to the recording. Jane even chimes in a couple of times. It is a good sermon!)
A lot of us might be feeling like we are alone in the darkness right now.
"Who among you fears the Lord
and obeys the word of his servant?
Let the one who walks in the dark,
who has no light,
trust in the name of the Lord
and rely on their God." Isaiah 50:10
"I will give you hidden treasures,
riches stored in secret places,
so that you may know that I am the Lord,
the God of Israel, who summons you by name." Isaiah 45:3
It's more important to be with Him in the darkness than to try and figure it out.
We live by promises, not by explanations.
How to navigate through the darkness:
1. Rely on God.
It isn't about reasons. It is more important to say "Here I am, God" rather than, "Why, God?"
God gets a lot of work done in the valleys.
This blessing of being challenged in the dark -- God is using it as a tool. God uses it. God gives examples in nature on how to deal with dark times, with "winter."
(Here, Jane talks about decidious trees and how the process of dropping their leaves in the fall protects them for the winter. Also why evergreen trees bend their branches downward is mentioned -- really, listen to the recording -- you'll be glad you did).
God's producing steadfastness in us. Challenges were necessary to prepare you for bigger challenges. The more challenges we get the more we rely on Him.
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a]whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance." James 1:2-3
Clay and pot process:
baptism in water first step.
Kneading -- second step. Clay has to surrender to potter's hand, get maleable.
Being thrown and shaped on wheel is third step. Here the clay gets its permanent shape.
It looks done but it needs to be fired and glazed and fired again. Fire finishes us. Sometimes the object will be fired a third time -- the firing solidifies and brings out the beauty and its usefulness.
A great example in scripture of God's children not waiting on Him, trying to get out of the darkness quicker is Abraham and Sarah getting a child by Hagar. They ran out of patience. We need to be careful about doing it ourselves -- getting ahead of God. We can really make a mess of things for us and others.
We seek for reasons. Instead, seek God.
3. God uses trials to prepare us to work with others.
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God." 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
"The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountainin the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”
Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper."1 Kings 19:11-12
"Now in those days John the Baptist *[a]came, [b]preaching in the wilderness of Judea, saying, 2 “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven [c]is at hand.” 3 For this is the one referred to [d]by Isaiah the prophet when he said,
“The voice of one [e]crying in the wilderness,
‘Make ready the way of the Lord,
Make His paths straight!’”
4 Now John himself had [f]a garment of camel’s hair and a leather belt around his waist; and his food was locusts and wild honey. 5 Then Jerusalem was going out to him, and all Judea and all the district around the Jordan; 6 and they were being baptized by him in the Jordan River, as they confessed their sins."
Concept of baptism was already present in the Jewish faith before John the Baptist came along.
God's people hadn't heard from God for 400 years.
“As for me, I baptize you [a]with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you [b]with the Holy Spirit and fire." Matthew 3:11
Someone coming greater than I!
"Then Jesus *arrived from Galilee at the Jordan coming to John, to be baptized by him." Mathew 3:13
Galilee was 75 miles from the Jordan river. Jesus walked those 75 miles. This was a dangerous journey. He very likely did this alone. He made this journey specifically to get baptised by John. He went with intention.
"But John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I have need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?”
Why did Jesus want to be baptised with the baptism of repentance?
"But Jesus answering said to him, “Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he *permitted Him." Matthew 3:15
He's leading by example. Humility involved. Obedience involved.
"After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and [a]he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and [b]lighting on Him, 17 and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, “This is [c]My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.” Matthew 3:16-17
There is unity there. It all came together. Beginning of Jesus's ministry. Starts with a bang.
Significance of water:
Water is new life
"Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life." Romans 6:3-4
There's no resurrection without death. There's no salvation without resurrection.
"having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead." Colossians 2:12
I know who I am. I know who He is. I know I can't do this on my own.
Hold me accountable (this is what baptism does).
What are you waiting for?
Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.’" Acts 22:16
It doesn't matter where you came from.
2 "By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life." Romans 6:2-4
Baptism is a symbolic act and a public admittance of who we are in Christ. We can't come to Him without letting go of ourselves.
"Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God." Romans 6:8-10
Death was necessary because of who we are. Resurrection was possible because of who Jesus Christ is.
11 "In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13 Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness,but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace." Romans 6:11-14
Law allowed us to understand our sin. We now fall under grace.
Slaves weren't seen then as they are now. Someone could willingly become a slave if someone would take him on. He would then fall under the master's physical and legal protection.
16 "Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?
It's time to choose who your Master is going to be. It's time to choose a side. For or against Jesus. Sin or grace. On God's team or against God's team. Make the commitment.
When I accept Him I am honoring His sacrifice. Christ died once for all.
17" But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you have come to obey from your heart the pattern of teaching that has now claimed your allegiance. 18 You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness." Romans 6:17-18
19 "I am using an example from everyday life because of your human limitations. Just as you used to offer yourselves as slaves to impurity and to ever-increasing wickedness, so now offer yourselves as slaves to righteousness leading to holiness. 20 When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. 21 What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in death!" Romans 6:19-21
What benefit did you get in and from sin?
Through Christ our sins are forgiven and forgotten (really!).
Go back to your master and admit mistake.
22 "But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God,the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in[a] Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 6:22-23
If you haven't surrendered yourself completely, you haven't at all. God wants 100% of you.
Dupree Baptist Church Pastor