Monthly Archives: August 2021

Luke 3- Ministry of John The Baptist

Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests, the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins; As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth; And all flesh shall see the salvation of God. Luke 3:2-6

Today we take a look at the ministry of John the Baptist, as we discussed earlier John the Baptist was the fulfillment of the coming of Elijah. This was affirmed by Jesus himself (Matthew 17:12) and now we see the fulfillment of Isaiah prophecy (Isaiah 40) as the messenger who will prepare the way for the coming of the Messiah

Now John’s ministry was not a watered down, sugar coated ministry we see mostly today, John preached the requirement of repentance and baptism. Prepare for the coming of Jesus by turning away from your sin with Godly sorrow. John also taught the importance of making a public profession of your faith through baptism. Hence why John was known as the Baptiser. 

Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then? Luke 3:7-10

John called out the religious leaders and the corruption of their religious system. You see, Jesus is not about a religion, Jesus is about having a personal relationship with God. John also pointed out that salvation doesn’t come from being a Jew, it comes from Christ alone!

So what happens to those who reject Jesus? As John states “every tree that doesn’t produce fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire (Hell)” The peoples response was “What shall we do then”? 

He answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise. Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master, what shall we do? And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you.And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages. Luke 3:11-14

So you might ask “What is the fruits of repentance, that John was referring to earlier” The fruits are to live like Christ, because he loved us first! Saying your a Christian is not just a statement, its a lifestyle, its a way of life. John the Baptist was like a farmer, tilling the ground and sowing the seed of God. This was his purpose to prepare people for Jesus Christ!

Are you ready? Have you received Jesus Christ yet? Have you repented of your sin and been baptised? Prepare for the return of Christ, because He is coming in the clouds soon Amen!

Luke 2- Fathers House

Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem after the custom of the feast. And when they had fulfilled the days, as they returned, the child Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem; and Joseph and his mother knew not of it.But they, supposing him to have been in the company, went a day’s journey; and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance.And when they found him not, they turned back again to Jerusalem, seeking him. Luke 2:41-45

Not alot is known about the childhood of Jesus, but one story we do know is from when Jesus was 12 here in Luke Chapter 2. Every year Mary and Joseph would travel to Jerusalem for the Passover Feast , which was a custom of the Jews. Little did they know that Jesus is the Passover Lamb. The Lamb that everyone came to Jerusalem to slain was with them, the Son of God who would take the sin of the world

During their trip Jesus stayed behind in the Temple because he was having deep conversations with the religious leaders. Mary and Joseph didn’t realize Jesus wasn’t with them right away, because they were traveling home in a large group, which would be normal and saferer for everyone. However once they realized Jesus was missing they headed back to Jerusalem to find him

And it came to pass, that after three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers. And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. Luke 2:46-48

Notice the symbolic number of 3 days, Jesus was in the Temple learning and teaching with the religious leaders. Notice the KJV uses the term “in the midst of doctors” that’s because these religious leaders were the top teachers of The Law. These men that were present were the teachers of teachers. 

But notice they were all astonished as his understanding and answers. Remember Jesus was only 12 years old at the time. How did this boy have such great knowledge about God? We all know the answer, think about this Jesus was teaching these religious leaders about the Messiah, teaching them about himself. Yet many still failed to recognize him in their midst!

And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them. And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart. Luke 2:49-51

When Mary and Joseph found him in the Temple, notice Jesus response “Did you not know I will be in my Fathers Business or House” Jesus called God his Father, you would think that would give everyone a clue, however it said they didnt understand what Jesus was saying

However notice Marys response, she kept all of Jesus sayings in heart and pondered them. She knew who Jesus is, she knew Jesus is the Son of God, the Christ child. She knew Jesus is Immanuel, the fulfillment of Isaiah! Amen!

Luke 2- Confirmation of Christ

And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law,Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Luke 2:25-28

Mary and Joseph took the baby Jesus to the Temple to be consecrated to God. This was to be done for every male on the eight day, while they were there , a man name Simeon was there praying in the temple. It says that Simeon was filled with the Holy Spirit , and God told him he would not die until he saw the Messiah

Now when Simeon saw Jesus , he knew he is the Messiah. It says “He came by The Spirit in the temple” meaning the Holy Spirit led Simeon to the temple to see the Christ. Simeon even got to hold Jesus in his arms, as the fulfillment of his prophecy was complete!

Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him. Luke 2:29-33

Simeon thanked God for keeping his promise and allowing him to see the Messiah before he died. Simeon also revealed the New Covenant, as Jesus is the Light for the Gentiles and Israel. The Messiah not only came to save Israel, but came to save the entire world, the New Covenant

And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed. Luke 2:34-35

Simeon then warned Mary, that many people in Israel are going to reject the Messiah Jesus, as Jesus is the sign (Isaiah 7) that was prophesied about. As we know Jesus is the Living Word of God, and the Word pierces the soul (Hebrews 4) and will cause many to come to repentance and receive Christ

The Christ has come, the Holy One foretold by the prophets and The Law has not been fulfilled , the Light of the world has come into the world to bring salvation Amen!

Luke 2- The Sign

And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. Luke 2:15-17

After the Shepherds received the “good news” from the angel, they immediately went to Bethlehem to see the Messiah. But how would they find the Messiah? Because the angel told them there is a sign, the sign is a baby lying in the manger. This is the same sign foretold to Isaiah 7:14 “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

The virgin Mary holding the baby Jesus in the manger is the sign of the Messiah, as foretold 700 years before Christ birth to Isaiah. Imagine how many must have pondered this prophecy for hundreds of years , trying to figure out its fulfillment, here it is the Christ has come!

And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them. Luke 2:18-20

How did the shepherds respond when they finally seen Jesus? They went out and told the world, they declared the good news (gospel) to everyone! How do we respond when we finally receive Christ? Do you tell the good news to everyone? The good news that salvation has finally come into the world and we can inherit eternal life and be a child of God? 

Notice it says “Mary pondered these things in her heart” Imagine what must be going through the mind of Mary at this moment. She gave birth to the Son of God in a stable, she has strangers visiting her and glorifying God, and she still has the worries and uncertainty of how they are going to raise Jesus and where to live. 

If the birth of Christ gives you hope and joy, why don’t you tell someone the good news today! These shepherds had no theological training or even any social status, but they know what they saw, they saw the sign from God, the Christ has come! Amen!

Luke 2- Birth of Christ

And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. Luke 2:4-7

God works in mysterious ways, this is very prevalent in the birth of Jesus. First we see Mary and Joseph were forced to go back to Bethlehem because of a census. Now this all happened because of the prophecy of Micah 5:2, King Herod heard about the prophecy, that the Messiah would come from Bethlehem, so he forced everyone back to their hometowns. What Herod didn’t realize is that the King of Kings would come to this world as an infant. The amazing part is Herod actually helped fulfill prophecy by forcing Mary and Joseph back to Bethlehem

The events that happened when Jesus was born seemed like a disaster, however they played out perfectly according to God’s plan. Having the Son of God born in a stable seems wrong, however it is perfect when you understand that Jesus is the Lamb of God (John 1) If you need a sign that Jesus is the Messiah, look to the manger!

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. Luke 2:8-11

 Again at first glance, sharing the good news about Jesus to a bunch of lowly shepherds doesn’t seem to make much sense, however when you understand who Jesus is and why he came here, it makes perfect sense. Jesus is the Lamb of God (John 1) so sharing the news to the shepherds who were tending to the passover lambs of Israel makes great sense. 

Secondly, Jesus didn’t come to save the rich and powerful or the highly religious people, Jesus came for the outcasts, the poor in spirit, the lowly, the Shepherds represent us perfectly. The people nobody cared about,  God cared about them first!

And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:12-14

God sent us a sign of hope, a sign of peace, a sign of salvation, that sign is Jesus Christ, a baby lying in the manger. Nobody could have ever predicted God would come to Earth as an infant, but God’s ways are higher than our ways

We notice the first Christmas celebration began, as the sky was filled with angels celebrating the birth of Christ, singing “Glory to God in the highest” What an amazing scene this must have been. God becoming flesh to make us children of God, Amen!