Puritan Preachers often gave messages on “The Magnificence of Christ,” but modern preachers rarely if ever do. It is such a loss, for as John Piper says, “Beholding is becoming.” That’s the promise of 2 Corinthians 3:18
This week there will be no sermon, but together we will meditate on Isaiah 9:6 and the passages that flow from it. I’m eager to behold Him with this group, learning from you!
This week we will consider how Christ is The Mighty God!
We are doing Isaiah 9:6 for Advent in my little home church, The Orchard. For this week we listened to a sermon on Mighty God from Norm Funk. (If you want to listen, you can find it at the bottom of our home page: https://theorchardefca.org) The most interesting thought for me from that sermon was how relating to each person of the Trinity could give us a more victorious walk. We can look to the Father for care, to the Spirit for wisdom and power, and to the Son for a model of how we should live. I am going to tell you one way I did this recently. Think about this and share how you are doing it this week — and elaborate on Friday.
I am always asking His Spirit to show me people who might be open to Him, and then, a way I can open a conversation. I have learned from the model of Jesus to reach out in love and to ask questions, listening to what is keeping them from God or is wooing them to Him. It takes courage to do this, but I lean on my Father’s care, knowing that even if I am rebuffed, He is pleased.
This summer I felt led to approach a winsome young woman at pickleball named Kristy. I asked her to tell me her story. She said she didn’t have one but later wrote me a long e-mail with her story of very hard things in her life. That led to an e-mail from me sharing the gospel. (I would have done it in person but she moves to S. C. for the winter.) I thought I’d blown it and come on too strong when I didn’t hear back for ten days, but I put it in my Father’s hands. And then! I got a long letter back saying she had read my letter over and over. Just before Thanksgiving she put her trust in Christ and says she is “giddy with joy.” I am discipling her now and it is SO FUN!
I really like thinking about the Trinity this way!
God Hunt Sunday
1. How have you seen the Mighty God at work in your life this last week?
Monday: Isaiah 9:6 as a whole and springboard for prayer
Prepare your heart with this:
- Why do you think today’s preachers rarely preach on the magnificence of Christ?
- How has beholding Christ changed you? Be specific if possible.
- Meditate on Isaiah 9:6. How can you see that Isaiah is prophesying on both the first and the second coming of Christ? Thoughts?
Read the above and use it as a springboard for your own prayer of both praise and petition.
Tuesday: Fully God and Fully Man
Prepare your heart by meditating on Luci Shaw’s Made Flesh:
4. What pictures Luci paints particularly stand out to you and why?
5. How do the following verses show Jesus is fully God?
A. John 1:1 and John 1:14
B. Colossians 1:19
C. Hebrews 1:3
C. How did the shepherds and the wise men know or show that Jesus was Mighty God?
6. Think about how Jesus was on earth. Name some of the ways He became like us that might seem surprising. We know for example that He had to go through the birth process — what else?
7. According to Hebrews 2:14-18, find at least three reasons why Jesus wanted to become like us.
Wednesday: He Emptied Himself
8. Philippians 2:2:3-11 is a key passage on how it was possible for Mighty God to become fully man. Meditate on it and share:
A. What it says:
B. What it means:
C. How, indeed, it is a model for how you should live. Ask the Lord to show you how this could apply to your life today – and share.
Thursday: Glimpses of Glory
Though He emptied Himself, indeed, there were times when we could catch glimpses of His Glory, of the hidden truth that He is Mighty God. I’ll give you a few of my favorites for you to comment on, and then I want to hear a few from you!
His Birth: Comments?
His Life: Comments? (This is a challenge question!)
His Death: Comments?
Friday: Walking in the Trinity
9. I gave an example of walking in the Trinity in the opening and asked you to think about it this week. Share how you are doing and give an illustration.
9. What is your take-a-way and why?