Sunday, December 30, 2012
January 6 , 2013
Breaking Open the Scriptures Scriptures for January 6th – Isaiah 60:1-6; Psalm 72:1-7, 10-14; Ephesians 3:1-12; Matthew 2:1-12; Theme: Epiphany; Song: I want to walk as a child of the light - UMH 206 Ephesians : Paul understood that every place that he was and every situation that he was in, was an opportunity to tell people about Christ. Not everyone was interested in what Paul had to say. Many people attacked him. And many times he even ended up in jail. Paul is in jail, and he is still telling people about Jesus. He realized that when he spoke, either they were going to get it or they weren’t. But that it was not about him. It was not anything that he said, it was the power of Jesus in what he said. Paul says that God was a mystery because there was no one to talk of what God was doing on the earth. God came to the Jews, and made them his people. It is a mystery why God is now coming to the gentiles. But as Paul says, it is a mystery that we can be grateful for. When we speak of Christ, we are a part of that great mystery. And it is not us that transforms, it is the power of Christ within us. Matthew: This is the season of epiphany. It is the season of understandings of things that are a mystery. It is a season of realizing things that have been there all of the time. It is a time for journey’s into the unknown. The wise men set out on a journey that they did not know. They did not know who they were going to see, they did not know how long it would take to get there, they did not know how what would happen to help them know that they have reached their destination. And yet by faith and a star they set out. When looking for Jesus , we all have to set out on that same journey. And know that it is the star of Jesus leading us. and when we arrive – it is an epiphany – we just know that we have arrived! All of our lives is for such a time as this, we are the right person, in the right place for the right situation. We just have to trust Jesus. And we have to have our gifts prepared. During their journey, they also had to be able to discern the good people from the bad people. They did not know Herod, but they knew that he was not an ally in their to see good, right and hopeful. Questions: How do people respond to you when you tell them about Jesus? How do you respond to rejection? Are you able to stay faithful when people reject you? Do you allow God to speak for you, or do you think you have to come up with your own words? What criteria do you use to tell if someone is helping or hindering your journey with Christ?