Sermon Transcript – The Apostle’s Creed

Series B – Third Wednesday in Lent – Wednesday, March 4, 2015 | 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:
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Time StampTranscript
0:27The holy Gospel According
0:30to Saint John chapter 1. verses 1-17
0:36in the beginning was the word
0:39the word was with God
0:41and the Word was God he was with God in
0:44the beginning through him all things
0:47were made without him nothing was made
0:49that has been made in him was life and
0:53that life was the light of men the light
0:56shines in the darkness but the darkness
0:58has not understood it
0:59there came a man who was sent from John
1:02or from God his name was John he came as
1:04a witness to testify concerning that
1:06light so that through him all men might
1:09believe he himself was not the light he
1:12came only as a witness to the light the
1:14True Light that gives light to every man
1:16was coming into the world he was in the
1:18world and though the world was made
1:19through him the world did not recognize
1:21him he came to that which was his own
1:23but his own did not receive him yet to
1:25all who received him to those who
1:27believe in his name he gave the right to
1:29become children of God children born not
1:32of natural descent nor of a human
1:34decision nor a husband’s will but born
1:36of God the word became flesh and made
1:39his dwelling among us we have seen his
1:42glory the glory of the one and only who
1:43came from the father full of grace and
1:46John testifies concerning him he cries
1:49out saying this was he of whom I said he
1:51who comes after me he has surpassed me
1:53because he was before me from the
1:55fullness of his grace we have received
1:57one blessing after another for the law
1:59was given through Moses Grace and Truth
2:03came through Jesus Christ
2:05in the name of Jesus
2:09so our texts this evening Genesis 1 John
2:131 and First Timothy in a real way work
2:16all together if we’re going to be
2:18talking about
2:19the well the Apostles Creed
2:22the Apostles Creed in a very real way
2:27compresses all of Christian doctrine
2:29down into something very squished up
2:32that you can unpack in fact if I wanted
2:34to preach on the Apostles Creed and
2:36really try to do it justice it would
2:39take a lot more than one sermon it would
2:41take a lot more than one sermon and so
2:43let me read from the catechism and then
2:45we’ll take a look at our text and I’ll
2:47point out a couple of things that
2:48highlight all of this the catechism
2:50reads in the first article of the Creed
2:52I believe in God the Father Almighty
2:55maker or creator of Heaven and Earth
2:58creator of Heaven and Earth and so the
3:01question what is this
3:03answer I believe that God has created me
3:06together with all that exists
3:08God has given me and still preserves My
3:11Body Soul Eyes Ears all Limbs and senses
3:15reason all mental faculties although I
3:18feel like I’m losing some of those
3:20yeah in addition God daily and
3:23abundantly provides shoes and clothing
3:25food and drink house and farm spouse
3:28children Fields livestock and all
3:31property along with all the necessities
3:34and nourishment for this body and life
3:36now it seems kind of a crazy thing you
3:39know it’s kind of pausing here in the
3:41catechism but isn’t that not what we
3:43read in the Genesis account in the
3:45beginning God created the heavens and
3:46the Earth and then it goes on in great
3:48detail about how God created animals
3:51plants life or you know food giving
3:55plants and trees and Little Critters and
3:57things like that right
3:59so when we confess in the Creed I
4:02believe in God the Father Almighty
4:05creator of Heaven and Earth
4:08you have to in your mind squish all of
4:11Genesis that we just read into that
4:14sentence now the metaphor I’ve used
4:17before in the past we all remember the
4:18days when we had to if we wanted to get
4:20on the internet we had to use a modem
4:22right you dial up dude and you go
4:27this horrible sound I mean it sounds
4:29like something was electronically being
4:31murdered you know but in those days it
4:34took forever for files to upload or
4:36download we were doing this over you
4:37know a telephone line and in order to
4:40kind of speed things up they would come
4:41up with these compressed files remember
4:43you know they have like stuff it or zip
4:45it or things like that so you get a zip
4:47file and you had to unzip it you know or
4:49you get a stuff it file you had to
4:51unstuff it well that’s what’s going on
4:53here in this in this poor in the Creed
4:55the Creed has got all of this theology
4:57just squished all into it you know so
4:59that it can go across the line pretty
5:01quick so that you can confess it but the
5:03idea then is is that when you understand
5:05how all of it hooks in together when you
5:09say the words of the Creed I believe in
5:11God the Father the almighty creator of
5:13Heaven and Earth your mind can
5:16uncompress that sentence and you can get
5:18all of that Genesis that we just read
5:20and he said that’s what it refers to
5:22that’s why Luther when he says what does
5:24this mean he’s talking about
5:28food and House Farm spouse children
5:31livestock property
5:34all of the things were created by God so
5:37when we confess to these Creator we are
5:39confessing that we receive all of these
5:42good things from God
5:45that he made them he sustains us
5:48everything that we have everything that
5:51we are is because of him
5:54right now let me
5:58before I unpack the rest of this let me
6:01read again from our epistle text because
6:03it you know this is where it gets very
6:06Paul writing under the inspiration of
6:08the holy spirit says this the spirit
6:09clearly says in later times some will
6:11abandon the faith follow deceiving
6:13spirits and things taught by demons
6:16such teachings come through hypocritical
6:18Liars whose consciences have been seared
6:20as with a hot iron now why did I put
6:24that in the middle of all of this very
6:25simple because when you look at what we
6:28confess here that I believe in God the
6:30Father Almighty maker of heaven and
6:34there are Christian churches today that
6:36deny this Doctrine
6:38or they have to put an asterisk snack to
6:41it next to it I believe in God the
6:44Father Almighty yeah maybe maybe mother
6:48you know God God the unisex ambiguous
6:53um and I don’t believe that he created
6:56or she created the heavens and the Earth
6:58I believe that we are a result of the
7:00big bang and that you know there was an
7:02explosion and then there was Evolution
7:04and now we are all here and our great
7:06great grandparents were amoebas
7:09right and they sang this in the church
7:15that’s not what scripture says and
7:16that’s not what Jesus taught
7:18and so when we confess on Sunday
7:21mornings or we’ll confess this evening
7:23the words of the Apostles Creed we’re
7:25confessing that we believe that none of
7:28this is an accident
7:29all of this is has its origin in the
7:33mind and the power of God who spoke all
7:35of these things into existence you
7:39you’re not outside of this thing that
7:41God has created you’re an integral part
7:43of it in fact he knew you before the
7:46creation was made and before the
7:48foundations of the earth were laid he
7:49knew every one of the good works that
7:52you would do he prepared in advance for
7:54you to do he knew all your days he knows
7:56how many days you have left and you
7:57don’t even know that and he knows the
7:59number of hairs you have on your head
8:01which is kind of a weird number if you
8:03think about that why would anybody want
8:05to know this right
8:08when we confess I believe in God the
8:10Father Almighty maker of heaven and
8:12Earth We’re confessing a lot so I’m
8:14trying to unpack what’s packed into
8:16there so Luther then says this God
8:19protects me against all danger and
8:22Shields and preserves me from all evil
8:24and all this is done listen to what he
8:28says out of pure fatherly and divine
8:30goodness and mercy
8:33not because of anything you’ve done to
8:35earn God’s favor you couldn’t
8:37right for all of this for all of these
8:40things I owe it to God to thank and
8:44praise serve and Obey him
8:48this is most certainly true
8:50great great stuff now you saw the
8:54contrast and let me see if I can
8:56highlight it in Genesis we have the
8:58account of creation God made all these
9:00things this is good this is good this is
9:01good at the end of it very good
9:04right but when we read in first John
9:09let me read a sentence for you it starts
9:11off with in the beginning was the word
9:13and the Word was with God and the Word
9:15was God he was with God in the beginning
9:17the word by the way is Jesus the logos
9:19he was with God in the beginning the
9:21beginning he’s referring to here’s the
9:23beginning of the creation he was there
9:24already when when the beginning began
9:27and it says this in him was life and
9:31that life was the light of men the light
9:33shines in the darkness but the darkness
9:35has not understood it
9:39when you compare the two texts both of
9:41them referring to Genesis John 1
9:44literally being the Genesis of the New
9:47but the way it tells the story it kind
9:50of omits
9:52Genesis 3 but assumes it because here
9:55the light that shines in the darkness
9:57has come and the Darkness is not
9:59understood it where the darkness come
10:02the darkness came as a result of our
10:05Rebellion against God and our fallen to
10:08hence the second article of the Creed
10:11which reads
10:13and I believe in Jesus Christ his only
10:16son our Lord who was conceived by the
10:18Holy Spirit born of the Virgin Mary
10:20suffered under Pontius Pilate was
10:22crucified died and was buried he
10:25descended into hell and on the third day
10:26he rose again he ascended into heaven
10:28and is seated at the right hand of God
10:30the Father Almighty from where he will
10:32come to judge the living and the dead so
10:34what does this mean
10:36it means that I believe that Jesus
10:38Christ true God begotten of the father
10:41in eternity and also true man being born
10:44of the Virgin Mary is my Lord
10:46and here’s the best part he has redeemed
10:49me a lost and condemned human being
10:53that is the good news and it’s right
10:56there in our Creed so when you confess
10:58the Creed about all of these things that
11:01Jesus has done remember that he has done
11:04them for you
11:06born of the Virgin Mary suffered under
11:08Pontius Pilate crucified died and buried
11:10all of this was for my Redemption and
11:13yours so he Jesus has redeemed me a lost
11:17and condemned human being and that’s why
11:20there’s Darkness
11:21talked about in John 1 where there was
11:24no darkness in that sense talked about
11:26in Genesis
11:28so he Jesus he’s purchased and he’s
11:31freed me from all sins from death and
11:34from the power of the devil and he
11:36didn’t do this with gold or silver but
11:37with his holy precious blood
11:40and with his innocent suffering and
11:43he has done all of this in order that I
11:47may belong to him live under him in his
11:51kingdom and serve him in Eternal
11:53righteousness innocence and blessedness
11:55just as he has risen from the dead and
11:58lives and rules eternally
12:00this is most certainly true
12:03Now understand this the person who is
12:07attacking the creation account in
12:10Genesis doesn’t really have the creation
12:13as their target
12:14think of it as collateral damage if you
12:17would because the thing they’re really
12:19going after the thing they really want
12:21to put the stake into the heart if you
12:25is the story of Christ fleeting and
12:27dying for our sins
12:30if man really isn’t God’s creation and
12:32Adam really wasn’t a human being and we
12:35really did come from apes
12:37well then what was Jesus on the cross
12:42to die for our sins and to propitiate
12:44the wrath of God because man had fallen
12:46into sin under Adam well if there is no
12:48Adam and there was no creation well then
12:50that’s just silly mythology and we can
12:52rework the what Jesus was doing on the
12:55cross maybe Jesus was showing us how
12:58evil empire was you know that was his
13:01way of sticking it to him you know
13:03sticking it to the Caesar man yeah he
13:05said he said come with any kind of weird
13:07concoction you want but when you deny
13:10the creation that God the father is the
13:12one who’s created us and that Adam and
13:14Eve were historical people that’s just
13:17the first Domino to fall the one you’re
13:19really after is the one that says that
13:21Jesus purchased and redeemed you a lost
13:24and sinful preacher
13:25the one leads to the other they’re
13:27intricately linked
13:30but the good news it’s right there in
13:32the Creed so when you recite the Creed
13:34and you get to that part born of the
13:37Virgin Mary suffered under Pontius
13:38Pilate crucified died buried say to
13:42for me
13:44for me
13:46for me a poor sinful being
13:51what love God has for us
13:54and we weren’t purchased with gold
13:57or any Earthly treasure
14:00what was something so precious there’s
14:02no way to put a price tag on it
14:05the very blood of the innocent spotless
14:08Lamb of God Jesus Christ
14:11that’s the price to purchase you and me
14:14out of Slavery to send death in the
14:18it’s a precious and terrible cost to pay
14:20but Jesus knew what he was doing and he
14:24wouldn’t be dissuaded from it he came on
14:27a mission to rescue us and he was
14:29determined to do so so much so that he
14:33scorned The Shame of the Cross and he
14:35did it because he loves you
14:39and that’s what he wants you to recall
14:42every time you confess this Creed of the
14:46amazing love that God has
14:49for Sinners Like Me and like you
14:54the article continues the Creed
14:56continues I believe in the Holy Spirit
14:57one holy Christian Church oh we
15:01lutherans have got to get over this
15:03little side note
15:07in our Hymnal in fog when we recite the
15:10Nicene Creed it uses a better word than
15:13Christian it uses Universal because the
15:16Creed itself says one Holy Catholic
15:18church but every time we hear the word
15:21Catholic we go
15:23you know right all of a sudden we can
15:26smell incense and we you know we see
15:28rosaries and and candles and and people
15:30praying to Saints and we know okay we
15:35we’ve so gotta get over this okay let me
15:39help okay Catholic small C it has a
15:43meaning prior to the bishop of Rome
15:46taking power that he never was given by
15:48Christ has meaning and the meaning is
15:52and so here’s the idea back in the day
15:54okay remember in the ancient world you
15:57know if you would go from one region to
15:59another gods were kind of territorial
16:01think of them like mascots if you would
16:03for like high school football teams okay
16:06and so you know when you read in the
16:08paper that you know the the Tigers beat
16:10the wolves or something like that right
16:12so we all know that the Tigers they’re
16:15they’re over there and the wolves are
16:17over there I’m not just making mascots
16:19here but I’m a Dodger fan but we can
16:20talk about that later but the idea then
16:23is is that they’re kind of regional
16:24they’re tied to an area well that’s how
16:26it was in the ancient world the Egyptian
16:28gods were kind of tied to the region of
16:30Egypt the Greco-Roman gods were kind of
16:33you know Greece Rome in that area and
16:36then you got all up in phenicia and
16:37things like that and so then you got ahu
16:39you know Mazda over in Babylon and you
16:42know other so the idea was is that you
16:44cross a river or a border and you’re
16:46leaving the land of one God and going to
16:48the land of another God that’s the way
16:50the ancient world thought so when the
16:54ancient Christian Church confessed one
16:59Catholic Church they were saying Jesus
17:03has no borders
17:06Christ is the god of Jews and Gentiles
17:10free enslaved rich and poor male and
17:15female every one of us
17:18that’s what it’s saying
17:20but you know of course we Luther things
17:22we hear Catholic and we go right
17:24so we need to get over that so I believe
17:27in one Holy Catholic Church the
17:30community or the communion of saints the
17:32Forgiveness of sins the resurrection of
17:35the body and the life Everlasting ah so
17:40what does this mean I believe that by my
17:43own understanding or strength I cannot
17:46believe in Jesus my Lord or come to him
17:49and that’s an important thing
17:51see the work of the holy spirit is the
17:53one he’s the one who
17:55redeems us not that in the sense of
17:58purchasing but he’s the one who
17:59regenerates us so that we Are Made Alive
18:02remember scripture says we’re all born
18:03dead and trespasses and sins and you
18:06know what dead means
18:07dead yeah it’s dead in Greek dead in
18:10Hebrew Dead in Latin it’s just dead okay
18:13and we don’t expect dead people to do
18:15anything because dead people are for the
18:17most part I don’t know if you notice
18:18this they’re pretty inactive and I know
18:20there’s a lot of zombie movies and stuff
18:22like that on television right now but
18:23that’s never happened okay
18:27so despite zombies okay dead is actually
18:31dead dead dead dead like your body’s
18:34decomposing like there’s nothing left to
18:35you like dead
18:37and so when it says we’re born dead and
18:39trespasses and sins that’s what it means
18:40and so the Holy Spirit when we hear the
18:43gospel or we are brought to the font as
18:46infants and you know we hear the good
18:49news that Christ died for our sins or
18:52water in the word I baptize you in the
18:54name of the father and the Son and the
18:56Holy Spirit the holy spirit is attached
18:58to the preaching into the water and the
19:00Holy Spirit does something to you he
19:02takes a person who is dead and
19:04trespasses and sins and he resurrects
19:10brings them to life he regenerates them
19:12this is what Titus says we’re not saved
19:15by works done by us in righteousness but
19:17by washing of regeneration
19:21now the word in Titus for regeneration
19:23okay that word appears only two times in
19:26New Testament only two times
19:29and the other time that it appears it’s
19:32talking about God creating the new Earth
19:36there will be a time when the earth is
19:38regenerated why because even the Earth
19:40itself is going to pass away we’re saved
19:44through death and resurrection and the
19:47planet that we’re on right now the
19:49universe that we’re in this whole thing
19:51is going to die God’s going to kill it
19:55and he’s gonna make it alive again
19:57bring it all back from the dead
20:00but this time without sin no death
20:02disease the devil or any of those things
20:05so when we confess that I believe in the
20:08Holy Spirit
20:09you’re saying that I believe that I
20:11cannot buy my own reason or strength
20:12believe in Jesus Christ because I was
20:15dead instead the Holy Spirit he has
20:19called me that’s you he’s called you
20:22through the gospel he’s enlightened you
20:24with his gifts and he’s made you holy
20:27and he keeps you get this he keeps you
20:31in the true faith
20:34so God the Father maker Christ the
20:37Redeemer the Holy Spirit sustains you in
20:41the faith
20:42the one God Father Son and Holy Spirit
20:46he has it out for you
20:48but he doesn’t desire you to spend
20:50eternity in hell look at the lengths
20:52that he’s gone to save you
20:54create you redeem you and sustain you
20:58and so when you’re here tonight or
21:00you’re here on Sunday or you hear any
21:03other Sunday we’re here to Feast on
21:06God’s words
21:08because they’re not my words they’re
21:11Gods and the Holy Spirit is working in
21:14and with those words and our faith
21:16clings on to them and he strengthens us
21:19and he preserves us and he’s got us
21:23he’s going to bring you through the
21:26valley of the shadow of death
21:28he’s the one guiding he’s the one
21:31sustaining he’s the one strengthening
21:34and all we have to do is be like
21:37and understand he’s all he’s holding our
21:41hands we’re not really holding his
21:47so he’s made us holy
21:50he keeps us in the true faith and just
21:52as he calls gathers and in lights and
21:55makes holy the whole Christian church
21:57and that’s the fun part
22:00we’re just a tiny little congregation in
22:03a very big one
22:05of all the people on this planet people
22:07you’ll never meet in this lifetime and
22:09will have a difficult time getting to
22:11know even in eternity although you have
22:13a bazillion years to do it right this
22:16great multitude that Christ has called
22:18out of every nation of men Every Nation
22:22when you look at the book the end of the
22:24book in Book of Revelation this huge
22:27multitude that cannot be counted from
22:30all of the tribes of the Earth
22:32they’re worshiping the true God and
22:35singing the Praises of our great God and
22:40we here tonight
22:42we are just a tiny little congregation
22:45in the midst of that great multitude
22:47whom he’s called and he is sustained and
22:51he has raised from the dead and he has
22:53redeemed because he has created them and
22:55he cares for them and loves them
22:58we’re just a small part of it so we we
23:01confess the communion of the Saints
23:03think of the big multitude before the
23:06Before the Throne of the Lamb
23:10so daily
23:11this Christian Church
23:14the Holy Spirit abundantly forgives all
23:17sins mind and those of all believers and
23:21on the last day the holy spirit will
23:23raise me and all the dead and will give
23:26to me and all believers in Christ
23:29eternal life
23:32this is most certainly true
23:35and see that’s the thing Christianity is
23:38not a religion for the living it’s a
23:39Christian it’s a religion for the dying
23:44Luther in the um
23:46heidelberg’s disputation talks about
23:49what it’s like to be a theologian of the
23:50cross a theologian of the Cross calls a
23:53thing what it is
23:54Theologian of Glory never does
23:58right Theologian the cross calls the
24:00thing what it is
24:01let’s face it
24:03I’ve been with you all for almost a year
24:05and you all look a year older
24:08you’re all one step away one step closer
24:12to the pastor of Kong’s Winger presiding
24:14over your funeral
24:17it’s true
24:19and I know that sounds horrible
24:22see the thing is is that what’s most
24:25certainly true
24:27is that on the last day
24:29the holy spirit’s going to raise you up
24:32and because you are in Christ and you
24:35are forgiven and redeemed to purchase
24:37bloodbot regenerated
24:39and the Holy Spirit sustains you
24:42you will not rise to condemnation
24:45and to hear you will not hear from
24:47Christ apart from me I never knew you
24:49and said you are going to hear him say
24:51Well done good and faithful servant and
24:53believe me when you hear that you’re
24:54going to go
24:56I cannot believe he said that to me
24:59but see the thing is is that remember
25:01that sermon I preached a couple weeks
25:03ago about the bridal dress
25:07because you’re in Christ you’re clothed
25:09with his righteousness all of this is a
25:12gift not because you earned it or
25:13deserve it no you couldn’t possibly earn
25:16it or deserve it all of this purely out
25:17of his love and mercy for you
25:20and so he closed you he washes you
25:25he sustains you what a great and amazing
25:28God we have and for all of this we owe
25:31him so much
25:33so much
25:35but it’s not a debt that we owe in order
25:37to earn or pay it back but it’s a debt
25:40of undying gratitude
25:42that God is so rich in Mercy to Sinners
25:46as awful as me and you
25:49in the name of Jesus Amen
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