Sermon Transcript – The Battle Belongs to the Lord

1 Year Lectionary – First Sunday in Lent – Sunday, March 6, 2022 | 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
0:28the holy gospel according to saint
0:30matthew the fourth chapter
0:39then Jesus was led by the spirit into
0:42the wilderness to be tempted by the
0:43devil after fasting 40 days and 40
0:45nights he was hungry and the tempter
0:47came and said to him if you are the son
0:50of god command these stones to become
0:52loaves of bread but he answered it is
0:53written man shall not live by bread
0:55alone but by every word that comes from
0:57the mouth of god then the devil took him
1:00to the holy city set him on the pinnacle
1:02of the temple and said to him if you are
1:04the son of god throw yourself down for
1:06it is written he will command his angels
1:07concerning you and on their hand they
1:09will bear you up lest you strike your
1:11foot against a stone Jesus said to him
1:14again it is written you shall not put
1:15the lord your god to the test again the
1:17devil took him to a very high mountain
1:19showed him all the kingdoms of the world
1:21and their glory and he said to him all
1:23of these i will give you if you will
1:25fall down and worship me and then Jesus
1:27said to him be gone satan for it is
1:29written you shall worship the lord your
1:30god and him only shall you serve then
1:32the devil left him and behold angels
1:34came and were ministering to him this is
1:37the gospel of the lord in the name of
1:41boy these are great texts got to tell
1:43you that there’s an interesting
1:45alternative old testament text and i was
1:48tempted to throw it in
1:49but i thought you know let’s kind of let
1:51them all work together so as we are
1:54entering this lenten tide and we know
1:56that again we need to examine our lives
1:59in light of god’s commandments and his
2:01law and see all the different ways in
2:04which we sin against god and sin against
2:06neighbor and thought word and deed by
2:08the things we do and don’t do it’s here
2:11then in the beginning of the lenten
2:12season where we consider the devil’s
2:15great attack against us
2:17and how he continues to attack us and to
2:20tempt us and how he tempted our first
2:22parents tempted adam and eve and then
2:24we’ll see what the solution to all of
2:26this is is the solution try harder do
2:30well you know be more intentional in
2:33no it’s not it’s it’s really not it’s
2:35something very different all together so
2:38in that regard let me remind you what
2:40the devil was up to according to Christ
2:43in the gospel of john chapter 8
2:45he says these words that the devil that
2:48he was a liar and a murderer from the
2:50beginning that’s a reference to the book
2:51of genesis so we know from Christ’s
2:54words in the gospel of john that what is
2:57happening in the book of genesis chapter
2:593 is an attempt to murder the newly
3:03created human beings who were made in
3:05the image of god and the devil knows
3:07full well something and this is
3:08something we need to pay attention to
3:10because this is really what it’s all
3:13god means what he says and he says what
3:15he means and his words do something god
3:20never and i mean never lies and so the
3:24devil banking on this taking one of
3:26god’s great virtues if you would his
3:29truthfulness decides to turn that
3:31against humanity murder humans by having
3:34them disobey god’s command and god
3:37himself is now the murder weapon and in
3:39the annals of evil i don’t think you can
3:42come up with a more evil plan than this
3:44but what is it that happened what went
3:46wrong the problem was that adam and eve
3:50listened to the voice of the serpent
3:53listen to their feelings
3:55rather than to the word of god
3:58and so as a result of this well we know
4:00that we’ve been plunged into the misery
4:02that we now experience in our life
4:04including sickness disease aging
4:08obesity and other things like this right
4:11yeah we suffer all of this as a result
4:13of our fallenness and ultimately death
4:15but there was this great promise in our
4:18old testament text
4:20i will put enmity between you and the
4:22woman between your offspring and her
4:24offspring he shall bruise your head and
4:27you shall bruise his heel you’ll note
4:30that the he being referred to is the
4:32seed of the woman and i only know one
4:34guy who is the seed of a woman and not
4:36the seed of a man and of a woman and
4:38that’s Jesus and so he’s the one
4:40promised by god who would ultimately
4:42defeat the devil on our behalf pay
4:45attention to that so now Jesus Christ
4:48son of god son of man son of david son
4:51of god he is now
4:53been baptized by john the baptist that’s
4:56immediately what precedes our gospel
4:58text today and there’s Jesus coming up
5:00out of the water and the heavens open up
5:02the holy spirit descends on him in the
5:04form of a dove and the voice of the
5:06father is heard from heaven saying these
5:09you are my beloved son in whom i am well
5:13and what does the devil always go after
5:16the word of god with adam and eve the
5:18question was did god actually say with
5:21Jesus you’re going to note he’s got to
5:22get after just kind of niggle see if he
5:24can work the angles to get Jesus to
5:30not trust these words of god and you’ll
5:33see then that the devil’s temptation
5:35results in three very common ways in
5:38which we are all tempted as well either
5:41by the devil or our own sinful flesh and
5:43it’s here we must remember these things
5:46that Jesus is like us in every way
5:49except for without sin and he was
5:52tempted in every way that we have been
5:54tempted and is without sin and as a
5:57result of this he has great mercy on us
5:59and understands the difficulties of this
6:02life firsthand they are not something in
6:04the abstract for him so Jesus was led by
6:06the spirit into the wilderness to be
6:08tempted by the devil
6:10after fasting for 40 days 40 nights he
6:13was hungry and every time i read this
6:15text i sit there and go well of course i
6:17don’t even make it 40 minutes you know
6:19you just got to think this through here
6:21so the tempter then comes and listen to
6:23the words
6:24if you are the son
6:27of god
6:29Jesus had heard those words you are my
6:31beloved son in whom i am well pleased
6:32and so now the devil’s trying to get
6:35Christ to not trust these words if you
6:39are the son of god command these stones
6:42to become loaves of bread
6:44and you’re going to note that this
6:46temptation when you kind of work it
6:49this is the temptation to despair
6:52and to not trust god’s word and not
6:55continue to believe his words by faith
6:58because of our circumstances remember
7:01Jesus hasn’t eaten for 40 days he’s
7:04and the devil’s basically saying listen
7:07this is no way for the real son of god
7:09to be suffering if you really are the
7:11son of god well work a miracle here
7:14Jesus and things will get better for you
7:18let me kind of work out how this comes
7:20to us oftentimes this temptation to
7:24well one of the reasons or one of the
7:26ways it comes to us is through our own
7:29maybe it’s a medical ailment maybe it’s
7:31a chronic disease maybe it’s persecution
7:34or things like this
7:35and the devil comes along and says well
7:38doesn’t scripture say that you’re you’re
7:40the apple of god’s eye
7:43don’t you think that if you were really
7:45a Christian that you wouldn’t be
7:47suffering in this way
7:49it’s an interesting temptation you sit
7:51there and you go well maybe i’m not
7:54maybe i’m not a Christian
7:56you know i remember years and years and
7:58years ago long before i was a pastor we
8:00were teaching a bible study at a church
8:02in san juan capistrano and one of the
8:04members of the church took ill and he
8:06was going to die
8:07i went to visit him in the hospital and
8:09he said to me
8:10i really must have done something wrong
8:12to upset god this way you know that he’s
8:15causing me to suffer
8:18and i said your suffering has nothing to
8:19do with god’s love for you
8:22god loves you because he says so in his
8:24word and Christ has bled and died for
8:27your sins so i redirected him back to
8:29the promises that we have in Christ and
8:31it’s important for us to note this as
8:33Christians then we do have promises and
8:36the promises have to do with the
8:38forgiveness of our sins being reconciled
8:41to god and Christ does this even for us
8:44when we were the enemies of god and
8:46scripture is very clear in romans 8 that
8:49we have been adopted into the family of
8:53god we are now adopted children and
8:55here’s where we have to pay attention to
8:56one little note here
8:58this is not like well the adoption
9:01papers have been filed
9:03but they haven’t been signed yet by a
9:06judge you know
9:07it’s still pending and of course if i
9:10screw up during this this inter period
9:12that somehow the adoption won’t go
9:14through remember the the movie orphan
9:17annie you know about orphan annie it was
9:19a big thing when i was a kid right the
9:21sun will come out tomorrow right you
9:24know what i’m talking about here and
9:25it’s a great three-act play but the
9:27drama is always is is about whether or
9:30not annie will actually finally be
9:33adopted by daddy warbucks and of course
9:36it has that great conclusion at the end
9:38but the conflict is all around that
9:41that’s not our conflict brothers and
9:43sisters that’s not our conflict
9:45you have been baptized into Christ
9:48you have been buried with him in his
9:50death in his resurrection your sins have
9:53been washed away today we will feast on
9:55his body and blood given and shed for
9:57the forgiveness of our sins the adoption
9:59papers have been signed
10:01you are the children of god
10:04adopted loved bled for cherished it is
10:09that being the case
10:11don’t let the devil
10:12somehow think that
10:14well maybe that’s not true for you it is
10:19it is absolutely true as certain as
10:21Christ’s resurrection from the grave
10:24so all of that being said
10:26don’t be tempted to despair but there’s
10:28another way in which we can be tempted
10:30to despair and goes along the lines of
10:33well if i were
10:36a Christian
10:37then i wouldn’t be struggling
10:39with sin
10:41now how many of us can legitimately say
10:45you know when the devil comes a knocking
10:47and says things like you know it’s just
10:50a little sin
10:51it’s just a little malice it’s just a
10:53little gossip it’s just a little
10:55coveting it’s just a little sexual
10:57immorality it’s just a little
10:59dishonoring of your parents
11:01we sit there and go yeah it’s it’s not
11:03that bad it’s not that bad right and
11:06then as soon as we give in to the
11:07temptation like morons we said they go
11:09yeah sin cool right what happens the
11:12devil comes flooding at us basically
11:15saying you’re going to hell this is no
11:17way for a Christian to behave you’re not
11:19really saved
11:25these are the temptations that we face
11:27is the temptation to despair and note
11:29Christ has faced this temptation
11:32he’s faced
11:33straight on and unlike us
11:36Christ never yielded to the temptation i
11:38always loved the fact that Christ
11:41in this account quotes from the book of
11:44deuteronomy three times i mean talk
11:46about biblical illiteracy the world we
11:48live in so many people who call
11:49themselves Christians
11:50they’ve never read the bible i mean
11:52legitimate they have no clue what it’s
11:53about and then if you ask them have you
11:56read the book of deuteronomy they they
11:58might even question whether or not
11:59that’s a real name of a real book in the
12:01bible but it really is
12:03that’s where Christ goes so Christ
12:06trusting in the written word of god
12:08says it is written man shall not live by
12:10bread alone but by every word that comes
12:11from the mouth of god
12:13so if i’m hungry i’m hungry
12:15this is absolutely good right salutary
12:18and fitting for the son of god
12:20and as they say in baseball swinging a
12:22miss strike one for the devil
12:25well next temptation so the devil took
12:27Jesus to the holy city set him on the
12:29pinnacle of the temple and said to him
12:31if you are the son of god throw yourself
12:33down for it is written he will command
12:35his angels concerning you and on their
12:36hands they will bear you up lest you
12:38strike your foot against the stone here
12:40we know from our gradual that the devil
12:43is twisting psalm 91. all right he’s he
12:46omitted a little bit of a portion of the
12:48text but all of that is to
12:51really tempt Jesus into committing the
12:54sin of presumption
12:55let me explain how this one goes all
12:57right so you may have heard a preacher
13:00somewhere on youtube or on the interwebs
13:02or maybe you’ve even attended a church
13:04we’ve heard a sermon to the effect of
13:07you need to embrace your royal identity
13:10as a Christian
13:12you did you not know that you are a
13:15that’s right you Christian women you are
13:18princesses and you Christian men of
13:20course you are handsome strapping young
13:22princes and as the royals of god we have
13:26the authority
13:28as royals to decree royal proclamations
13:32to decree and declare things like health
13:34and wealth and should a hurricane be set
13:36handed towards florida or texas we can
13:39take our gandalf stick and whack that
13:41thing in the name of our royal decrees
13:44back into the ocean right
13:47isn’t that not exactly what kenneth
13:50copeland did covet 19
13:53i blow the wind of god on you this is a
13:55sin of presumption
13:57all right
13:58totally the sin of presumption and what
14:01the devil is tempting Christ to do is
14:03sit there and go yeah well
14:04well that that psalm psalm 91 really is
14:07written about me i guess i can just go
14:09willy nilly breaking the laws of gravity
14:12and not have to worry about any of the
14:14consequences i can throw myself off of
14:16cliffs i can go skydiving without a
14:19parachute and god will save me
14:24and utter
14:27and that’s the temptation how many
14:28people have fallen into this sin in our
14:30day how many people have
14:32have heard oh you are so special you’re
14:35hearing the voice of god you need to
14:37open up a youtube channel and prophesy
14:40every week and every month and tell
14:42people about their breakthroughs and
14:44their suddenlies that god’s gonna give
14:46them stuff like this
14:47pure utter
14:51so Jesus said again
14:54it’s written
14:55you shall not put the lord your god to
14:57the test god has not promised that if
15:00you go skydiving without a parachute
15:02that he will save you
15:04so as they say in baseball
15:07strike two
15:09see what happens
15:10so the devil then took Jesus to a very
15:12high mountain
15:14showed him all the kingdoms of the world
15:16and their glory and he said to him all
15:18of these i’ll give you if you’ll fall
15:20down and worship me
15:24hey man serious now what is this aside
15:28from the uh obvious here the
15:31temptation to worship satan
15:33at the core we need to come to grips
15:35with something here scripture warns us
15:37that in the last days within the visible
15:39church there will be taught doctrines of
15:43and that’s a true thing that people will
15:46exchange the truth of god for lies and
15:49for myths and as a result of it they
15:51would end up in fact really
15:54engaging not only an apostasy but
15:57apostasy that doesn’t worship Christ but
16:00at its core is still a worship of the
16:03this is the temptation to apostasy that
16:04we all
16:06all experience and so Christ points us
16:09back to true worship true worship is
16:12with truthful words from the scriptures
16:16and Jesus says to the devil you shall it
16:19is written you shall worship the lord
16:20your god in him only
16:22shall you serve
16:24and so we’re going to note here
16:26Christ has succeeded where we have
16:29here the one promised by god all the way
16:32back in the garden of eden has come on
16:34the scene the one who was going to crush
16:37the head of the serpent
16:39he is on the scene and he’s doing his
16:41conquering work
16:43now there’s another place to go with
16:46this here
16:47and i mentioned it at the beginning of
16:49the sermon and that is
16:51our alternate text the alternate text
16:54the option for the old testament text
16:57that for this sunday is first samuel
17:00chapter 17 the story of david and
17:02goliath you’ll note i don’t normally
17:04preach on this because it doesn’t really
17:05come up very often but there it is and
17:07it’s like ah i gotta i gotta preach a
17:10little bit on this we’re gonna note
17:11something here we’ve also in the in
17:14regards to the sin of presumption heard
17:17really bad sermons throughout our
17:18lifetime on the story of david and
17:20goliath and it generally goes something
17:23like this
17:24so what are the goliaths in your life
17:27okay so you read the story of david and
17:28goliath and then you ask yourself the
17:30question what is what are the goliaths
17:31in your life is is it a mountain of debt
17:34is it a bad job is it a broken down car
17:38or a boss who treats you poorly or it
17:41worse is it misbehaved children i had
17:43three goliaths in my house
17:46well you need to get out your five
17:48smooth stones and you need to run out
17:50into the battlefield and you need to
17:52take your sling and slay your goliaths
17:58no in this regard then
18:02i would remind us of an interesting
18:04context here
18:05in the chapter before
18:07this this the chapter where david and
18:09goliath is what happened to david
18:12is that he was anointed by the prophet
18:15samuel to be the next king
18:18of israel
18:20and we learn from that text as well as a
18:22good cross-reference in hebrews chapter
18:2511 that david is a man of faith he
18:27believes the words of god and there were
18:30actual promises to those in the mosaic
18:32covenant in his day that david acted on
18:35in faith this is the reason why he was
18:37able to slay a bear or things like this
18:40he trusted god and as a result of that
18:45followed through on the promises that he
18:47had made and now david
18:50after his anointing
18:52is also facing a great temptation a
18:55champion if you would who’s kind of a
18:57stand-in for the devil and david’s words
19:00are super important because they help us
19:02because i must remind you that after
19:05Jesus baptism he was
19:08thrown into great temptation after
19:10david’s anointing he also was put into
19:13great temptation
19:14after our baptisms we also are put into
19:17great temptations the devil is not
19:20content to leave us alone and so some of
19:22the david’s words here really are going
19:24to help us
19:26so it says in verse 40 of first samuel
19:2917 david took his staff in his hand
19:32he chose five smooth stones from the
19:36he put them in his shepherd’s pouch his
19:38sling was in his hand and he approached
19:40the philistine and the philistine moved
19:42forward and came near to david with a
19:44shield bearer in front of him and when
19:46the philistine looked and saw david he
19:48disdained him for he was but a youth
19:51ruddy and handsome in appearance and the
19:53philistines said to david am i a dog
19:56that you come at me with sticks and the
19:59philistine cursed david by his gods the
20:02philistine said to david come to me and
20:04i will give your flesh to the birds of
20:05the air and the beasts of the field and
20:08then david said to the philistine you
20:10come to me with a sword and with a spear
20:13and with a javelin
20:15but i come to you in the name of yahweh
20:18sava oath
20:19the god of armies the god of the armies
20:22of israel whom you have defied
20:25this day and these are the words this
20:27day yahweh will deliver you into my hand
20:30and i will strike you down and cut off
20:33your head and i will give the dead
20:35bodies of the host of the philistines
20:36this day to the birds of the air and to
20:38the wild beasts of the earth that all
20:40the earth may know that there is a god
20:42in israel and i would note here this
20:45imagery of the dead philistines being
20:48their flesh being eaten by the birds is
20:50exactly the same kind of imagery that we
20:52find in the book of revelation regarding
20:54the last battle itself the armies of the
20:58evil one arrayed against Christ and they
21:00all die and there’s a big feast for all
21:03the birds that day it’s interesting when
21:05you think about it
21:06but he continues
21:09he let me back up he says that all the
21:11earth may know that there is a god in
21:12israel and that all
21:14this assembly may know
21:16and listen to the words
21:18that they may know that yahweh
21:26fun little play on words in the hebrew
21:29here by the way there is one word in
21:32that actually means
21:37do you all know that one
21:43saves now david used two words yahweh
21:47um yes
21:49yeshu i can’t even remember the ending
21:51on this one but he uses the same yeshu
21:53word that opening phrase there and so
21:56it’s kind of fascinating here
21:58that in this text in the hebrew david
22:00says that yahweh saves and the reader
22:04who knows who this is pointing to Christ
22:07the one who crushes the head of the
22:08serpent can see at least an echo of
22:12Jesus’s name here it is the lord who
22:15saves Jesus who saves yahweh saves
22:18that’s his name
22:19he doesn’t save with sword or spell
22:21spear for the battle is the lord’s and
22:24he will give you into our hand listen
22:27again to the words the battle is the
22:28lord’s he will give you into our hands
22:32so brothers and sisters listen to what i
22:34have to say here
22:36you are not strong enough to defeat the
22:38devil i am not strong enough to defeat
22:41the devil i assure you i am not the one
22:43promised in in genesis chapter 3 verse
22:48neither are you
22:49but Christ is the one who’s who is
22:52promised Jesus is the one who saves and
22:55you’ll note he is the one who conquers
22:57the devil for us and so he’s also and
23:00this is important he’s also left us an
23:03example for us to follow
23:05because the problem is that we listen to
23:09other words
23:10we trust other voices
23:12we trust the voice of the devil we trust
23:15the voice of the world
23:16we trust the voice of our own sinful
23:20when god’s word so clearly says it is
23:25and so we need to repent of all of the
23:28different ways in which we have cast the
23:30word of god beside us behind us and as a
23:33result of not listening to god’s voice
23:35we have fallen into the temptations that
23:39afflict us as Christians but also this
23:43let us come back to the promise of the
23:45forgiveness of our sins Jesus is the one
23:47who’s conquered the devil for us and
23:50Jesus is the one who also promises us
23:52some amazing things if you remember in
23:55your in the book of revelation the first
23:59few chapters have a lot of red ink in
24:01them i think a lot of people forget that
24:03there are red letters in other portions
24:05of the new testament in fact if i were
24:07to kind of show you as a visual aid look
24:09at all the red ink on that right Jesus
24:11is doing a lot of talking here and so
24:14Jesus is having letters written to all
24:15these different churches and Jesus makes
24:18promises like this to the one who
24:20conquers i will grant to eat of the tree
24:23of life which is in the paradise of god
24:25the one who
24:26conquers will not be hurt by the second
24:30death he says the one who conquers i
24:32will give some of the hidden manna and i
24:34will give him a white stone with a new
24:36name written on the stone that no one
24:38knows except for the one who receives it
24:41and he goes on and says to the one who
24:43conquers i will give him the morning
24:44star these are the promises of Christ to
24:48his churches
24:50but i would remind you then that we only
24:55by faith
24:57faith in the one who has already
24:58conquered the devil
25:00faith in the one who crushed the head of
25:04the serpent by going to the cross and
25:06bleeding and dying for your sins and
25:08mine and then rising victorious from the
25:11grave on the third day
25:14at the beginning of lent let us repent
25:17of all the different ways
25:18we have listened to voices that we ought
25:21not to listen to
25:23and let us come back to the voice of god
25:25found in the written text let us not
25:28despair of our standing before god as
25:30his baptized forgiven beloved children
25:34let us not
25:36fall into the sin of ten of of
25:39excuse me i lost my train of thought
25:41there fall into the temptation of
25:43presumption the sin of presumption or
25:46worse into apostasy which really is
25:48truly the worship of the devil let us
25:50repent of all the different ways in
25:52which we have participated that and let
25:54us again trust in the one who has
25:56conquered for the battle truly belongs
25:58to the lord and it is Yahweh who saves
26:01not with spear or sword or javelin he
26:03saves by his suffering bleeding dying
26:06son of God who is given and shed for the
26:08forgiveness of our sins so that we might
26:11have life and life abundantly and
26:13eternal in Jesus name amen
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