Sermon Transcript – Ready to Die

Series B – First Sunday After Christmas – Sunday, December 28, 2014 | Pr. Chris Rosebrough

Welcome to the Teaching Ministry of Kongsvinger Lutheran Church. Kongsvinger is a beacon for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and is located on the plains of Northwestern Minnesota.
We proclaim Christ and Him crucified for our sins and salvation by grace through faith alone, and now, here’s a message from Pastor Chris Rosebrough:
Intro bumper
Time StampTranscript
0:27The holy Gospel According
0:30to Saint Luke Chapter 2
0:32verses 22-40.
0:36when the time of their purification
0:37according to the law of Moses had been
0:39completed Joseph and Mary took him Jesus
0:42to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord
0:45as it is written in the law of the Lord
0:47every firstborn male is to be
0:49consecrated to the Lord and to offer a
0:51sacrifice in keeping with what is said
0:53in the law of the Lord a pair of doves
0:55or two young pigeons now there was a man
0:58in Jerusalem called Simeon who was
1:00righteous and devout he was waiting for
1:02the consolation of Israel and the Holy
1:05Spirit was upon him it had been revealed
1:07to him by the holy spirit that he would
1:10not die before he had seen the Lord’s
1:12Christ moved by the spirit he went into
1:15the temple courts when the parents
1:17brought in the Child Jesus to do for him
1:19with the custom of the law required
1:21Simeon took him in his arms praise God
1:25Sovereign Lord as you have promised you
1:28now dismiss your servant in peace for my
1:31eyes have seen your salvation which you
1:33have prepared in the sight of all the
1:35a light for Revelation to the Gentiles
1:37and for the glory of your People Israel
1:40the child’s father and mother marveled
1:42at what was said about him then Simeon
1:44blessed them and said to Mary his mother
1:46this child is destined to cause the
1:48falling and the rising of many in Israel
1:50and to be a sign that will be spoken
1:53against so that the thoughts of many
1:55hearts will be revealed and a sword will
1:57pierce your own soul too there was also
2:00a prophetess Anna the daughter of fanuel
2:02of the tribe of Asher she was very old
2:05she had lived with her husband seven
2:07years after her marriage and then was a
2:09widow until she was 84. she never left
2:12the temple but worshiped night and day
2:14fasting and praying coming up to them at
2:16that very moment she gave thanks to God
2:18and spoke about the child to all who
2:20were looking forward to the Redemption
2:22of Jerusalem
2:23when Joseph and Mary had done everything
2:25required by the law of the Lord they
2:27returned to Galilee to their own town of
2:30Nazareth and the child grew became
2:32strong he was filled with wisdom and the
2:35grace of God was upon him
2:38in the name of Jesus
2:41let me read the preceding verse to Our
2:44Gospel text this morning to give it a
2:46little bit of context it says this on
2:48the eighth day when it was time to
2:50circumcise Jesus he was named Jesus the
2:53name the angel had given him before he
2:55had been conceived and then we continue
2:57into our text and when the time for
2:59their purification according to the law
3:00of Moses had been completed Joseph and
3:03Mary took him to Jerusalem to present
3:06him to the Lord as it is written in the
3:08law of the Lord every firstborn male is
3:11to be consecrated to the Lord and to
3:13offer a sacrifice in keeping with what
3:15is said in the law of the Lord a pair of
3:17doves or two young pigeons now lest you
3:21miss the importance of this let’s talk
3:24about what’s going on so it’s a little
3:26bit of time has passed Jesus has been
3:28born and although we technically
3:31celebrate or recognize Christ’s
3:34circumcision this week eight days after
3:37Christmas that’s the Eighth Day of
3:38Christmas we will you know we’ll put it
3:40in today’s text is we’re not meeting
3:42again until next Sunday and so Jesus has
3:45been circumcised he’s been named and now
3:48he’s to be presented to the lord and
3:50there has to be a sacrifice and Mary
3:52also has to offer a sacrifice for her
3:55own purification according to the Mosaic
3:57Covenant and all of this is very
3:59important because scripture tells us
4:02that Jesus is
4:04sinless he’s the sinless Spotless Lamb
4:07of God who takes away the sin of the
4:10world now this is an important thing
4:12because not all of The Commandments in
4:14the Mosaic Covenant can be obeyed
4:19some of the Commandments that Christ
4:21obeyed they were obeyed for him by his
4:24parents for instance it is a requirement
4:26to be circumcised Jesus didn’t
4:28circumcise himself and he was
4:31circumcised on the eighth day after he
4:32was born according to the commandments
4:34so it’s rather fascinating that when we
4:36talk about Christ’s sinless spotless
4:39righteousness which by the way is talked
4:41about in our Old Testament texts this
4:43morning and I’ll show that to you toward
4:45the end of our sermon but Jesus’s
4:47sinless spotless life is imputed to us
4:51as a gift by faith God sees us righteous
4:55not because we have been made righteous
4:57in the sense that somehow we’ve improved
4:59and morally done better so that we’ve
5:01gone from being ugly sinner to climbing
5:03the ladder to becoming perfect wonderful
5:06holy shiny Saint by somehow curbing sin
5:10out of our life no instead we wretched
5:13Sinners are clothed with the
5:15righteousness of Christ and Christ here
5:18now is already at work for our Salvation
5:22even as an infant fulfilling the
5:24commands of the law of the Lord and in
5:26order to do this he’s doing it passively
5:29because his parents are doing the work
5:31for him so it’s important to think keep
5:34this in mind not all aspects of the law
5:36are obeyed actively some of them are
5:39obeyed passively that’s an important
5:40theological point but here’s the other
5:44this text reveals to us something rather
5:48significant about Mary and Joseph
5:51they are dirt poor
5:54they are absolutely dirt poor
5:57how do I know this well it says that the
6:00sacrifice that was offered was a pair of
6:03doves or two young pigeons let me read
6:05to you from the law of Moses Leviticus
6:07chapter 12. this is where this
6:10particular commandment is is recorded
6:12for us Leviticus 12 I’ll read verses one
6:14through eight Yahweh spoke to Moses
6:17saying speak to the people of Israel
6:18saying the woman conceives and bears a
6:21male child then she shall be unclean for
6:24seven days as at the time of her
6:26menstruation she shall be unclean and on
6:28the Eighth Day the Flesh of his foreskin
6:30shall be circumcised notice this is
6:32commanded then she shall continue for 33
6:35days in the blood of her purifying she
6:37shall not touch anything holy or come
6:39into the sanctuary until the days of her
6:41purifying are complete but if she Bears
6:43a female child she shall be unclean for
6:45two weeks as in her menstruation and she
6:48shall continue in the blood of her
6:49purifying for 66 days and when the days
6:52of her purifying are completed whether
6:54for a son or for a daughter she shall
6:56bring to the priest at the entrance of
6:58the tent of meeting a lamb a year old
7:01for a burnt offering
7:03that’s what the sacrifice needs to be a
7:08um whoops she didn’t have the money for
7:11one of those so here’s what the law then
7:14okay a llama year old for a burnt
7:16offering and a pigeon or a turtle dove
7:18for a sin offering and he shall offer it
7:20before the Lord and make atonement for
7:22her and then he shall be clean from the
7:24she shall be clean from the flow of her
7:25blood and this is the law for her who
7:27Bears a child either male or female and
7:30if she cannot afford a lamb
7:33that’s what it says then she shall take
7:35two turtle doves or two pigeons one for
7:37a burnt offering and the other for a sin
7:38offering and the priest shall make
7:40atonement for her and she shall be clean
7:45so think of it this way Mary and Joseph
7:48they’re from a tiny obscure mean little
7:51town called Nazareth
7:54town of maybe a couple of dozen families
7:56and Joseph here yeah his his role is
8:00Carpenter that’s his job is it’s a
8:03vocation but he doesn’t make a lot of
8:05money doing it and it’s so
8:07embarrassingly sad as far as how much
8:09money he’s able to generate that they
8:10can’t even afford to purchase a lamb
8:13for the sacrifice needed for Mary’s
8:18so they resort to the two turtle doves
8:24Jesus did not choose to be born
8:26in a palace
8:28he chose to be born to people who were
8:31poorest of the poor we’re talking like
8:34yeah you know if this were happening
8:36today braces are out of the question
8:38private school not even an option
8:40College you’ve got to be kidding me
8:43this kid wants the ability to maybe
8:46purchase some things you know once he’s
8:48old enough he’s going to need to get a
8:49paper route or find some odd jobs in
8:51order to make some money
8:53his parents just don’t have it
8:57and this tells you something about our
9:00he exalts the humble and he humbles
9:04those who exalt themselves Christ is not
9:06born in any kind of a place that people
9:10you know by the world standards would be
9:12looking for the king of kings and Lord
9:14of lords
9:15tells us something about his nature
9:19imagine now what’s happened is is that
9:22they’ve got to fulfill the law of the
9:23Lord God chose wise parents they’re
9:26going to obey what God commands
9:28and they show up in the temple and this
9:31is a big deal the Lord himself the Lord
9:34Of Glory the true Temple has finally
9:36arrived he’s on the scene he’s at the
9:39temple himself and so this is what our
9:42sermon hymn this morning said in his
9:43Temple Now Behold Him see the
9:45long-expected lord well there he is
9:49what’s he doing
9:51he’s pooping his diapers
9:54being held right he’s just a tiny tiny
9:58tiny little wee baby
10:00and for anybody who was there that day
10:03if you were just looking with your eyes
10:06and thinking away the way the world
10:08thinks you would have never suspected
10:11that the Lord Of Glory had now finally
10:14entered into his Temple
10:16Jesus is already at work fulfilling the
10:19law for us and so he comes in
10:23and they’re just going about their
10:25business and those of you who remember
10:27when your kids were tiny I remember you
10:29know each time we had infants in the
10:31house you know we’d put them into the
10:33stroller we go out to Walmart or to the
10:35mall or whatever and whenever you’re out
10:36in public with a tiny little baby oh
10:38there’s somebody who’s just got to see
10:40the baby right so you’re walking along
10:43and all this is oh your baby’s so cute
10:46and then they’re like oh can I touch it
10:48you know that kind of thing you know
10:49it’s it’s kind of weird you know but so
10:52here we’ve got something similar to this
10:54except for watch how this plays out now
10:56there was a man in Jerusalem called
10:57Simeon who was righteous and he was
11:01he was waiting for the consolation of
11:03Israel and the Holy Spirit was upon him
11:05it had been revealed to him by the holy
11:08spirit that he would not die before he
11:11had seen the Lord’s Christ or you could
11:13say the Messiah so moved by the spirit
11:15he went into the temple courts he’s on a
11:18he’s here he’s here the messiah’s here I
11:20know he’s here the Lord is coming to his
11:22Temple he knows this so he went to the
11:24temple courts and when the parents
11:26brought in the Child Jesus to do for him
11:28with the custom of the law required
11:30Simeon took him up in his arms it’s not
11:32like oh let me see the baby it’s like
11:36he’s got to hold him
11:38and here’s what he says Sovereign Lord
11:40as you have promised you now dismiss
11:43your servant in peace
11:46literally this man is saying Lord I’m
11:49now ready to die
11:51I’m now ready to die and his words by
11:54the way if you’ve ever been in a church
11:56that hat follows the the
11:59um like not just the lectionary but it’s
12:00liturgical his song his his words become
12:04part of a song that has been sung in the
12:05church for Millennia called The Nut to
12:08Midas Lord now you let your servant go
12:11in peace your word has been fulfilled
12:13for my own eyes have seen our Salvation
12:15which you have prepared in the sight of
12:17every people a light to reveal you to
12:19the Nations and the glory of your People
12:22this is a song that the church has sung
12:24for Millennia and it used to be sung
12:27here I actually checked I looked back in
12:29your old hymnals and yes you guys used
12:31to sing the minutes which is simeon’s
12:33words these words put the song
12:35and so he says he’s ready to die
12:39and so he was now
12:41make something very clear this text
12:43isn’t about you this is about Christ and
12:46what he’s doing for you but I want you
12:48to notice something that you and I all
12:49have something in common with Simeon and
12:51that is this we too who are in Christ
12:54who’ve met Christ we too are prepared
12:57like he is to die
12:58because being prepared to die is not
13:01about somehow making yourself righteous
13:03before God or doing enough good works or
13:06somehow cleaning up your act so that
13:09you’re ready to meet God no no no no no
13:11no you’ve actually met Jesus not face to
13:14face but he promises to be here for you
13:16remember scripture says we’re two or
13:18more are gathered Christ is truly
13:20present so Christ is here today he’s
13:22promised to be here today Christ
13:24promises that in the waters of your
13:26baptism he has washed you from the tide
13:30that flows from his pierced side as the
13:32hymn says the Easter hymn says right you
13:34have met him in the waters of your
13:36baptism and he has washed away your sins
13:38on the Sundays when we have communion
13:40the Lord is truly present in body and
13:42blood for you to eat and to drink for
13:45the Forgiveness of your sins you too
13:47have met Jesus just not face to face
13:50like Simeon has but you will meet him
13:52face to face someday and here’s the fun
13:54part is that Jesus says that if you
13:57believe in him even though you die yet
13:58shall you live and he says and you will
14:01never die and you sit there and go yeah
14:02but I know for a fact my body’s going to
14:04stop doing the breathing thing and
14:05they’re going to stick it in a box and
14:07put it under the ground
14:09right but Jesus says that despite all of
14:12that you will not even taste to death
14:14and so we like Simeon are prepared to
14:17die why because we have met Jesus Jesus
14:20has come to us just like he came to
14:23Simeon in the Temple and so you in a
14:25very real way have met the Lord’s Christ
14:28the Lord’s anointed and like Simeon you
14:30can say Lord now let your servant go in
14:33peace your word has been fulfilled my
14:36own eyes have seen thy salvation which
14:38you have prepared in the sight of every
14:40people you too can pray and sing and say
14:44simeon’s words as if they’re your own
14:45because in a very real way they are your
14:48own Christ has made them your own
14:50because of what he’s done for us and so
14:52Simeon the story continues so the
14:55child’s father and mother they marveled
14:57at what was said said about him so then
15:01Simeon blessed them and said to marry
15:03his mother
15:04this child is destined to cause the
15:07falling and the rising of many in Israel
15:09and to be assigned to be spoken against
15:11so that the thoughts of many hearts will
15:14be revealed yeah Jesus to say he was
15:16controversial well that’s an
15:18understatement he still continues to be
15:21people bristle at his Works bristle at
15:24his miracles they scoff at what he’s
15:25done and what he’s said and what he’s
15:27accomplished and many people are
15:28incensed by this whole idea that
15:30somebody would have to die for their
15:32sins and so people today still speak
15:34against Christ many worship Him many
15:36scoff at him and then we have these
15:39words and a sword will pierce your own
15:42soul to
15:45direct reference to the fact that
15:46scripture records for us that this same
15:49Mary who was there who gave birth to
15:52Jesus the Virgin who heard the
15:54announcement of the angel
15:55it says here that her
15:58Soul or very heart is going to be
15:59pierced too because scripture also
16:01records that she was at the foot of the
16:03cross watching her Lord and Savior and
16:07Son pleading and dying for her
16:11so truly that had to be a wretched thing
16:14to have to go through and to experience
16:16and if you’ve ever seen Michelangelo’s
16:18Piazza in Rome it’s that sculpture where
16:23the Mary is holding the dead corpse of
16:28great piece of artwork and this is
16:30that’s what this is referring to that
16:33It also says this there was a prophetess
16:35Anna the daughter of fanuel of the tribe
16:37of Asher she was very old
16:40she had lived with her husband seven
16:41years after her marriage and then was a
16:44widow until she was 84.
16:47man and women got married young then
16:50so you figure if she got married 15 16
16:54she’s widowed by her mid-20s
16:58she never remarried and it says she’s a
17:01prophetess this is a rare bird
17:03prophetesses are very rare in scripture
17:06and here we have one of them one of you
17:08can almost say she is like the last Old
17:12Testament prophetess this is the last of
17:13them and here’s what she has to say she
17:16was very old okay she was a widow too
17:19she had never left the temple she
17:20worshiped night and day fasting and
17:22praying coming up to them at that very
17:24moment she gave thanks to God and she
17:27spoke about the child to all who are
17:29looking forward to the Redemption of
17:31Jerusalem so there they are they’re in
17:34the temple no sooner are they done with
17:35Simeon than this Prophet as Anna shows
17:37up and what does she do she announced
17:40she taught everybody this is him he’s
17:42here you’re looking for the Redemption
17:44of Jerusalem that’s our Lord right there
17:47impromptu preaching if you would in the
17:51temple itself
17:52in marriage you know and they just are
17:56awestruck with what’s going on here
17:58so Mary and Joseph after this they
18:00return to Galilee and the Child Jesus
18:03grew and became strong and he was filled
18:06with wisdom and the grace of God was
18:07upon him and this is one of the things
18:09that’s scandalous about Jesus scripture
18:11says that Christ even though he’s the
18:13very nature of God did not consider
18:14equality with God a thing to be grasped
18:16but he humbled himself and became a
18:19servant and was obedient even to death
18:22on a cross so here we have the Son of
18:24God God in human flesh and God is
18:27omnipotent all-powerful you know all of
18:30these amazing things these powers and
18:34avails himself of none of it
18:39and Jesus just like any other Jewish boy
18:42growing up in Judea at that time he had
18:45to learn his alephs his baiths his
18:47gimbals his Dallas that’s ABCs in Hebrew
18:50right he had to learn all that and it
18:52says he grew in wisdom he grew
18:56so he has access to all of this and he
18:58empties himself and makes use of none of
19:00it and he has as close to a normal
19:04childhood as you can have if you’re a
19:05sinless boy
19:07and this is almost the last thing we
19:10hear about his childhood we get to hear
19:11one more thing one tiny little bit of
19:14information about Jesus’s childhood and
19:17then he disappears until he’s like 30
19:21and he begins his ministry and is
19:23baptized but we know this
19:26despite the fact that Jesus is none
19:28other than the Son of God in human flesh
19:30he grows and becomes strong and he grows
19:33in wisdom and knowledge
19:35this is an amazing mystery and why is he
19:38doing this he’s doing this to save us
19:41because as our epistle text says it says
19:44this when the time had fully come God
19:47sent his son born of a woman born under
19:55to redeem those who are under under the
19:58law that would be all of us so that we
20:00might receive the full rights of sons
20:04if you want kind of a historical analogy
20:06just imagine yourself in 19th century
20:10pre-civil War Mississippi
20:13and you’re out on the plantation
20:15do any of those Africans have any rights
20:18as Sons on those plantations they’re all
20:24that’s that’s all of us we were born
20:26slaves born slaves to sin death and the
20:30devil and Christ comes and he redeems us
20:33he pays the slave price not to make us
20:37slaves again but to make us Sons we’re
20:40set free and we’re adopted
20:42so this is the equivalent you could go
20:45back to the 19th century Mississippi
20:46Plantation here this would be the
20:48equivalent as if some slave owner
20:51basically went out and bought a whole
20:53bunch of slaves paid the Redemption
20:55price and then wrote them all into his
20:57will and said you guys are not slaves
21:00you are my sons here’s my inheritance
21:02and upon his death they inherit the
21:04whole estate
21:05isn’t it interesting that scripture
21:07always talks about our Heavenly reward
21:09as an inheritance
21:11in order for it to be an inheritance
21:12somebody has to die
21:15Wills are not you know states are not
21:18divvied up until somebody dies
21:21and so it is we receive an inheritance
21:24and who is the one who died
21:28he is he’s done this all for us and so
21:30we come now back to our old testament
21:33first few verses read this I Delight
21:35greatly in the Lord my soul rejoices in
21:38my God for he he has clothed me with
21:42garments of Salvation and arrayed me in
21:45a robe of righteousness as a bridegroom
21:48adorns his head like a priest and as a
21:50bride adorns herself with jewels
21:55so why was Christ presented in the
21:57temple why was he circumcised all to
21:59fulfill the law he was born under the
22:00law so that you can become a son
22:03and it says here that God himself will
22:06raise us clothes us with garments of
22:09Salvation and puts on us a robe of
22:15and that righteousness is none other
22:17than the perfect righteousness of Christ
22:20he lived perfectly sinless for you and
22:26remember it says in Isaiah that one he’s
22:29on the cross
22:30he’s pierced punished bruised beaten for
22:37our sins for the lord has laid on him
22:40the iniquity of us all so all of us who
22:44are baptized who are brought to penitent
22:46faith in Christ for the Forgiveness of
22:48our sins that perfect spotless beautiful
22:51shining robe of Jesus’s sinless
22:54righteousness by faith that’s
22:58late on us
23:00and that’s what our Old Testament text
23:02says and that’s the importance of Jesus
23:04being presented in the temple he’s
23:06already got gone to work fulfilling the
23:09law perfectly
23:11so that that perfect robe of Christ’s
23:14righteousness now is resting upon us so
23:17that we who are in him
23:19are truly saved by grace alone through
23:21faith and not of ourselves it’s a gift
23:23from God this wonderful robe of
23:25righteousness one by Christ for us
23:29so let us then wear these Robes of
23:33in ways that befit them
23:35knowing that we are sinners
23:38yet Christ has made us clean
23:41we were Beggars we had nothing not even
23:44clothed naked and bleeding
23:46and he has clothed Us in his
23:48righteousness he has redeemed us
23:50purchased us from the slave block and
23:53has made us his sons and daughters all
23:55as a gift because God is merciful God is
23:58good God is just and he does not desire
24:01your death he desires your life so much
24:04so that you can almost say that Jesus
24:05was hell-bent on saving you so much so
24:09that he became a man and grew in wisdom
24:12and stature and ultimately went to the
24:14Cross to bleed and to die for you you
24:17are in him you are washed you are
24:19redeemed you are here hearing his gospel
24:21in his words this morning
24:23and on those Sundays we received the
24:25Lord’s Supper that same Jesus who was
24:27presented in the temple is there in body
24:29and blood for the Forgiveness of your
24:31let us trust these great promises that
24:34Christ has given to us of our Salvation
24:37our Redemption and our being clothed in
24:39these garments of Salvation because
24:42truly without these there is no hope if
24:44you look deep into your soul he doesn’t
24:46have to you don’t have to look too hard
24:47really just be honest with yourself
24:50I do really think you’re righteous
24:53when you look at those Ten Commandments
24:55I like to think of those as like the 10
24:57different ways that people go badly
24:59astray and I think I had off in all 10
25:01different directions at the same time
25:04you don’t measure up I don’t measure up
25:07but Christ has measured up for you and
25:10he saves you he redeems you he purchases
25:12and he’s got you
25:14let us rejoice in this great salvation
25:17that Christ has won for us even on the
25:20day that he was presented in the temple
25:22in the name of Jesus Amen
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Kongsvinger Lutheran Church
15950 470th Ave NW, Oslo, MN 56744

We thank you for your support. All of our teaching messages may be freely distributed as long as you do not edit or change the content of the message, and, again, thank you for listening.
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