Compline – Sermon 66

13th February 2011 Off By Derek Buckthorpe

Prayer to start

May the words of my lips and the thoughts of our hearts be graciously received for the Glory and Honour of our Lord Jesus Christ

AMEN

Introduction 

Decisions! – Decisions! – Decisions! Each one of us – has to make them – where we live – what we eat – how we spend our time – who we share our lives with – What we decide – affects our lives – and the lives of those around us –

Some are more difficult than others – and whatever we decide – can be very costly – like in the TV program – “At home with the Braithewaites” – recently – where the mother had to choose between the £18m winnings on a lottery ticket – or lying in court –

some we only make once in a lifetime – like the one Jesus made –

the crowds were still excited about the miracle He performed in bringing Lazarus back to life – and chose Him as their new king –

Surely He will be the one – who could free them from the oppression of the Romans  

point 1  

But – with the arrival of some Greeks – Jesus made a staggering announcement –

That in a matter of hours – He would be dead – it must have gone down like a lead balloon

What! – but the Scriptures say the Messiah remains for ever – what do you mean by saying “the Son of Man will be lifted up”?

But Jesus tells them that His death isn’t the end of His reign – but the beginning – His Kingdom doesn’t start with a coronation but a crucifixion

Just as a grain of wheat is planted in the ground – and dies – in order for new growth and a new crop to be produced – So Jesus’ death will be the source of a new spiritual life and growth in the world – a new beginning for mankind – It will draw people to Him – from all over the world – like iron filings to a magnet – and produce a rich harvest for God’s Kingdom

But – entry into the Kingdom isn’t automatic – if we want to enter God’s Kingdom – we have to put that desire above everything else – before any short term gains we may receive in this life – we must die to our own self righteousness and give ourselves completely to God –

We will be tempted to take an easier path – even Jesus was tempted – John gives us a picture of Him in torment – as He makes His final decision of obedience unto death –

We are all afraid to go forward for Christ – its a tremendous responsibility – but Jesus shows us that the way to overcome our fears is by faith in Him – Jesus promises that if we trust Him and serve Him – He will helps us walk the true path towards the Kingdom –

John doesn’t say whether the Gentiles took any notice of Jesus – but the Jews certainly got the message – they openly ridiculed Him –
Jesus says – that time is short – He appeals for a response while the light is still with them – before the cross comes and He is taken away-

Jesus challenged them – that if they wanted to see God’s Kingdom – they have to accept God’s love on a cross –

We too are challenged to choose the way of the cross – to be one of the fruits of Jesus’ death and glorious resurrection

Without Jesus we are lost in darkness – but with Him – we have a clear view of the truth – Without Jesus we are dead – but with Him we have eternal life – –

 
Conclusion 

We either follow the crowd – and live for the promises of this world – or – follow Jesus – take up the cross that God has given us  – and live for the promises of the next – Its your decision – what do you choose!

 
Closing prayer

AMEN