In our message series on Jesus, the Messiah, we looked at His birth, His miracles, His sacrificial death on the cross and His resurrection. But the story of Jesus the Messiah does not end there. Today, we’re going to talk about the Messiah’s Exaltation. Of all the aspects of the Messiah that we are talking about in this series, this one is probably the least known. However, it is one of the most important, as it speaks of what Jesus the Messiah is doing in the present.

So, what are we talking about regarding the Messiah’s Exaltation. Let’s begin by looking at what happened after Jesus’ resurrection. Jesus spent 40 days teaching His disciples after He rose from the dead. He was seen not just by the twelve apostles, but by many others, even 500 on one occasion. Let’s take a look at Jesus’ final instruction to His disciples in …

Acts 1:8-9 (NIV2011)  “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”  After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.

Earlier in Acts 1, Jesus had commanded His disciples to wait to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. Spirit baptism, Jesus explains in verse 8, would give them the power to be His witnesses to the ends of the earth. After this final instruction, Jesus ascended up into heaven and has not been seen physically on the earth since the ascension.

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Happy New Year! I’m excited about 2017 because I know that God has good things planned for us. God has good things planned for your walk with Him. He has good things planned for your family. And He has good things planned for our church. When you’re walking with God there is nothing to fear about the New Year. The New Year is a time to be thankful and to rejoice in a great tomorrow. God wants to give each one of us a new start, a fresh start in this New Year 2017. Let’s grab hold of what He has for us.

Today, our message is entitled “Messiah’s Resurrection.” We’re going to see how David prophesied of a coming Messiah, who would die, but live again. As a prophet, David saw far into the distant future concerning the Messiah’s resurrection. Christmas is the biggest holiday in the world, celebrating the birth of Christ. Yet, the Bible celebrates, not the birth of Jesus so much, but His death and most importantly His resurrection. Why? Because the resurrection shows that the power of God is greater even then the power of death. If God could raise Jesus from the dead, then He can make the coming year a year of great hope for you. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is what our faith is all about.

1 Corinthians 15:14, 17 (NIV) And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. … And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.

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Merry Christmas! We’re glad that you’ve taken the time on Christmas Day to celebrate the reason for the day, the birth of Jesus Christ. Christmas is a wonderful time of the year. It’s a time for family, Christmas trees, gift-giving, lights and Christmas cookies. Yet, how sad would it be to celebrate someone’s birthday and forget whose birthday it is. So, today, we want to take the time and focus on the true meaning of Christmas.

The true meaning of Christmas has significance not just on December 25, but all through the year. So, today, my message is entitled “Messiah’s Birth. Christmas was when the promised Messiah was born into the world. The Old Testament prophets prophesied of a coming Messiah. The Messiah would be a Savior, a King, the Anointed One of God. Hundreds and even thousands of years later, the prophesies were fulfilled on that first Christmas night.

The Messiah was not born in a palace or to a King. Jesus, the Messiah, was born to a most unlikely couple. A couple who had just been married, after the bride had become pregnant. The mother Mary was a common peasant girl and her husband, Joseph, was a simple carpenter. Yet, the birth of the child Jesus, changed the world forever, as had been prophesied. The child born on Christmas split time in half, BC and AD, because He was and is the Messiah. So, Jesus was not just an ordinary baby, He was born destined for so much more.

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This Christmas season, our message series is about “Jesus the Messiah.” In this series, we’re looking at prophesies of Old Testament prophets concerning the coming Messiah. The Messiah the prophets spoke of was the Anointed One. He was to be a coming King and the Savior of the people of God. Those aspects of the Messiah were what the Jewish people were looking for, someone to fight their battles, to free them from oppression and to lead their nation.

However, the prophets also spoke of the coming Messiah as a suffering servant. The prophet Isaiah spoke of this messianic suffering servant most extensively in Isaiah chapters 52 and 53. These two chapters are quoted in the New Testament more than any other Old Testament passage. Although the first century Jews had difficulty in reconciling the Messiah as King with the Messiah as suffering servant, we can now understand how they fit together in the person of Jesus Christ.

Jesus came to this earth 2000 years ago as the suffering servant, who would give His life as a sacrifice to save sinners who believed in Him. When Jesus rose from the dead, He ascended into heaven as King of Kings. Yet, the fullness of His kingly rule and His Kingdom will not be fully realized until He returns to the earth. Today’s message is entitled “Messiah’s Sacrifice” and we’ll be looking at a prophecy of Isaiah about the Messiah as the suffering servant of God.

Isaiah 52:13 (NIV) See, my servant will act wisely; he will be raised and lifted up and highly exalted.

The Messiah, Jesus Christ, is God’s servant. Everything that He does is wise. Even though Jesus was God’s servant and served His disciples on the earth, the promise is that He would be raised and highly exalted.

Isaiah 52:14 (NIV) Just as there were many who were appalled at him– his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any man and his form marred beyond human likeness—

Yet, this servant would be attacked, crucified and killed on a cross. But this was no surprise to God or to Jesus Christ, the Messiah. It was part of God’s incredible plan of salvation.

Isaiah 52:15 (NIV) so will he sprinkle many nations, and kings will shut their mouths because of him. For what they were not told, they will see, and what they have not heard, they will understand.

The blood of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, would serve as a sacrifice, sprinkling the nations, providing salvation for all who would believe. So, when Jesus was born 2000 years ago as a baby, He was born to give His life as a messianic sacrifice. His sacrifice would make it possible for the sins of mankind to be forgiven and for people to have an eternal relationship with God.

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Today is the first Sunday in December and we all are beginning to think about Christmas. Christmas is the most celebrated holiday in the world, celebrating the birth of Christ. The date of December 25 was set in the 4th century. It was set at exactly nine months after the traditional date for the conception of Jesus, March 25. The celebration of Christmas is not commanded or even mentioned in the Bible. Yet, the Christmas holiday is here to stay. Rather than ignoring it, God would have us redeem the holiday for Him.

As Christians, we should help others reflect on the miracle of Jesus being born. Not just another baby, but God incarnate, fully human and fully divine. Jesus came to be born on this earth on a mission from God. A mission that led to our salvation and the possibility of eternal life for the entire world.

Today, we begin our Christmas message series, which I’ve entitled, Jesus the Messiah. So, let’s begin by talking about what the Messiah means. When you read the Old Testament prophets, you will see that they are looking toward to a coming Savior. A coming King who will bring the exiles back to the promised land. This Savior King is referred to as the Anointed One, which is what the word Messiah stands for. This Messiah would bring the Kingdom of God to this earth. He would bring justice and righteousness, along with judgment on all of God’s enemies.

Isaiah 9:6-7 (NIV) For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.  Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.

We see from the prophet Isaiah, that this Messiah would be a human child who would grow to be a King. From the Messiah’s titles, we see that not only would He be human, He also would be God. The Messiah would reign over the kingdom of God with justice and righteousness forever. So, the true believers in the Jewish nation had been longing for a Messiah for thousands of years.

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