By Rev. Glenn Martin
Editor’s note: Sixth in a series
God’s presentation of His Son to the occupants of planet Earth was more than anyone or any generation could contain. Hundreds of years between promises through prophets and the birth of a savior verified the long term plans of God to live among us. The birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ was and will always be the most significant event in history — until His coming again. His army of disciples believed in Him so much that no Roman army and no Jewish laws could stop them.
The early church proclaimed Jesus Christ’s words, example, suffering, death and resurrection to a world steeped in power, control and legalistic confusion. The gospel was light in darkness. Just as sunrise creates day, so God’s Son became the “light of the world.”
The church today is in existence because of the coming of “the light of the world.” We are historically, biblically and spiritually connected to the source of our origin.
The eyewitnesses knew the prophecies, saw the miracles, heard the teaching, watched the suffering and death and encountered the resurrected Lord but had no power of proclamation. They could only wait and pray or go fishing again.
One more dramatic act of God called Pentecost would explode into an army of 3,000 in one day. A rugged, uneducated fisherman who had denied Jesus three times was the preacher. “On this rock,” Jesus said, “I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
“Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God” is the message we proclaim. We call on residents of earth to repent, believe and receive.
The church belongs to Jesus who is the owner, the builder and the head. The church is not ours to make of it a prioritized list of issues. Our mission is to proclaim this resurrected Christ of the cross as the Lamb of God who takes upon himself the sins of folks like us.
All he told us to do can be done with His help, after we have received Him by faith. Without Him we can do nothing for Him.
A sermon is not a scriptural reference for a springboard to anywhere. A sermon is a proclamation of Jesus Christ as Lord to the glory of God the Father, to persuade every occupant of earth to become a new creature in Christ.
Martin is a retired clergy member of the Mississippi Conference and regular columnist for the “Advocate.”