When God enters the house, everything changes. Hope breaks into the picture. The liar is put out and truth begins to rule for everyone. Isaiah 59:14-16; Luke 2:8-10
Speaker(s): Thomas Schaller
7:00 PM on 12/22/2021
P. Schaller –
Welcome everyone here to the candelight service here at Greater Grace Church. We had the opening
song and then a message, and then we’re going to – there’s a special Finnish song and then
we’re going to do caroling at the end of the service with lights and praising God. It’s amazing.
Great to have you here tonight.
I think we could just start the service by praising God a lot. Would you stand with me please and
in your heart worship the Lord. It’s kind of funny without the opening music. You just got to do it
now, right now on our own. Praise the Lord! Praise you Jesus! Thank you. Thank you. (Prayer).
Would you just greet each other for a moment and say good to see you here tonight. God bless
you in Jesus’ name. Thank you God. Praise the Lord! Okay. You may be seated.
Turn with me please to Isaiah 59. We’ll go to the Christmas story in Luke 2, but first I want you
to notice and draw a picture for us from Isaiah 59. Some of you know that I do doodling and little
pictures. This picture captures a concept. It is a concept of oppression, abuse, oppression,
injustice, lying, hypocrisy, tyranny. And this is happening around the world in many different
ways. I’ll draw it as a house here. If you can think of somebody in the house that is abusive.
Here’s a pathway out of the house here. Here’s a door here, but in the house there is abuse.
Maybe we could say there is a man in the house that is abusing a child, maybe a wife. Maybe
he is an empty person who is a hypocrite and oppressive. We can imagine that. If you take the
house and make it bigger, it’s a company or an institution and go bigger. It could be a country
that is being ruled by lies and oppression and the people are in bondage inside the house. The
child is. There’s fear. There’s tyranny in the house.
Isaiah 59:14, I’ll put here on the outside of the house, judgment is turned away. Judgment could
come to the house and put things in order, but he doesn’t come. He turns around and goes
back, and the tyranny continues in the house. The next one, vs. 14. Justice stands afar off.
I’ll put a little man far away. Where is justice? He’s far away. But in the house there is
oppression. There is fear. There is tyranny. There is abuse. There are lies. People are in
trouble. What’s happening in the house? Justice is standing far away. vs. 14. Let’s put down
here truth is fallen. There he is. His feet are up. What’s his name? Truth. He fell in the street.
Where’s truth? He’s fallen in the street. What? What? Where is the joy? Where is the freedom?
Where is the power? Where is the liberty? Where is the release? Where is the worship? Where
is the message? Where’s Christ in this picture? He’s not there.
vs. 14. Equity cannot enter. Equity is standing at the door, we could say. He’s standing at the
door knocking but nobody answers the door. His name is equity. So it continues this way. I hope
this stimulates your imagination and consider in this world a lot of this is happening. Maybe
there’s a pimp with a house of women that he is selling their services. They would love to get
out, but they can’t. They’ve tried. We’ve been involved with that in Europe. A woman escaping.
Maybe it’s a dishonest businessman and somebody got caught in a bad deal and now they have
a hard time getting out.
Notice in the same chapter, Isaiah 59, we’ll go to – it says vs. 16. He saw there was no man.
This means God. God was in heaven. He looked for a man. He looked for somebody that could
go in there and bring these words. Just go over the list. Justice. Judgment. Truth. Equity. He
looked for a man who could intercede, who could come into the picture. Who could have the
authority to say the truth and not be afraid. To have the authority to release the captive. He had
the authority to say the word. He had the authority of Christ. He was God. Look at the verse
with me. vs. 16. God’s arm brought salvation. vs. 17-19. This is the verse many of us know. vs.
20. The redeemer will come.
Now let’s go to the Christmas story. This is a short message but a good one for us because we
are celebrating this amazing holiday with content. We have content in our hearts. We have
content in our life. We have what is being said here in this picture because this house was like a house I was in at one time. Not my family, but in our society. In my bad habits, in my friendships
with people. It was a house – it wasn’t a house of truth.
Yes, maybe we were good people, but we were not free people. Yes, maybe we were moral but
we were not spiritually minded. We didn’t know. We didn’t know why we were here. We didn’t
know what our options were. We didn’t know what our life was about. We didn’t know we were
born for freedom and joy. This is the nature of this day is that God so loved the world – now
Listen to this carefully. That God Almighty takes our breath away. One hundred percent God
became a man. He didn’t put on a Halloween costume like of a man. That God became a man
like on the surface. He clothed himself with an appearance, but it was in the very form. It says
morphe. The essence of God was a man, that a man was in essence God. That’s in Philippians 2.
That God, one hundred percent God became a man one hundred percent man. The angels saw
it. Because angels are spirits. We are part spirit. We are spirit but we are also mortal bodies.
As you grow in Christ, your spirit is alive and the angels know it. And God knows it. And God
knows who you are. You are really a real spirit that is indwelt by the living God. That Spirit that
indwells you is saying the same things that are being said to us in our Bible. And are saying
what the angels were saying as they observed here.
Look at Luke 2:8. These are the simple, humble illiterate people with not much of a job. Not
many possessions but they had, they were the lower end of the economical spectrum. They
were the ones, vs. 9. It was actual power. The angels have spiritual power. The presence of the
angel came upon them. vs. 9-10. Do you know that one of our marks of our faith is our joy. It’s
our joy. It’s – how could we say we are mortal people living in a mortal body dying every day,
and have you noticed how people are afraid of dying? They are afraid of covid and other things
Of course, we are mortal people and understand and also know what fear of death is. But also,
the angels, this is our world. This is our world. Our world is the world of spirit. It is the world of
God who is spirit. It’s the world of angels and the presence of God. It’s a world of words. It’s a
world of faith. And this living God enters that house. This is what is happening in the story
actually. The shepherds are being told by angels God is here. God is here. I bring you good
tidings. This is not a police force coming or an army. This isn’t a university lecture. This isn’t a
pile of money. This is not a solution to circumstances that men would be able to manage and
control. This is not a satellite or an internet connection. This is a spiritual reality and the angels
are saying this blows our mind. The angels are saying this.
Read it with me, vs. 10. This is the feast up on the wall over here. It says “A Feast for All.” What
do you mean all? Indians, Africans, Koreans, Chinese. A feast for all. Rich, poor, black, white,
educated, uneducated, little people, four years old, 40 years old, big people, important people,
unimportant people. It’s a feast for all people. Because everybody has a problem in that house
and you know what controls that house? Death. Death controls that house.
Death is walking around the house telling you’re going to die. You’re toast. You’re history. You
don’t have any authority over me. I’m in charge. I have control over you.
We need a Savior. We need nothing less than God becoming a man to save us. To go into the house and say, death,
where is your sting? Grave, where is your victory? Who are you compared to me? I overcame
you. I am a man. I overcame death. Death came by a man and death is defeated by a man. The
angels said I bring you good tidings. Nobody can go better than this. This is it. This is freedom.
This is relationship. This is reconciliation. This is power. This changes your life.
I was reading about a story of a woman who wanted to get married and it didn’t work out. Again
another time. It says in the Bible in Proverbs 13, “hope deferred makes the heart sick.” So the
woman was having this hope and as she was disappointed and growing older, her heart got
sick. Meaning that she became depressed and she stopped hoping. Cause why would I hope only to be disappointed? I’m going to be heartbroken again, so I give up. I withdraw. I don’t want
to face it. I just cash out. I’m finished. I’m done. She is being lied to. She is being told that the
only hope, the only hope that she has is a hope of marriage. And it doesn’t work.
When God comes into your life, there’s great tidings. There’s a change. There’s something that
changes. There’s a Savior. There’s a living God. And now our expectation is in God, Psalm
62:5. Now I come alive. I come alive again because the hope that God gives us is not about
marriage. It’s not about money. It’s not about family. It’s not about good health. It’s not about
long life. The hope we have is God. God is our joy. God is our life. God is the answer. God is
our peace. God is our answer. God is the message at Christmas. It’s him.
Let’s read what the angel said. vs. 11-14. They knew the meaning of it. They were shocked. I
think so. I think we could say the angels saw God create the universe because he made angels
first. Then he created the universe. They were singing when he did it. They were amazed. They
were always obedient. Always submissive. Always understanding. Always in fellowship with
God. Their faces do always behold the face of the Father, Jesus said in Matthew 18.
But a third of them fell and they came here. This world has evil angels in it. And the evil angels
are those powers in the atmosphere that lead us in unbelief, that tempt us in the trials of life,
that afflict us. They can ever cause disease in Acts 10:38, Mt. 4. The devils are real. They can
tempt you. They can take your faith away. They can take the Bible out of your heart in Mt. 13,
Luke 8. They can take the Word of God out of the heart. They can lead believers to lie to the
Holy Spirit in Acts 5:2-4. They’re powerful. They can deceive a nation. When a nation calls a
little boy a little girl and a little girl a little boy, then you got to wake up cause we are in a world
that is like that house. Come on! We are in a world that is oppressing, lying, cheating, deceiving,
and so we are part of that.
But no. Christ came in. The angels said, you guys, this is big. This is big potatoes. This is huge.
You have no idea what this means. You will be like the angels in the resurrection in Luke 18.
You will not die. You will leave your body and fly away (Psalm 90:10). Luke 16, angels will come
and take you to heaven. What do you mean heaven? Revelation 20 – 22. It’s a real city. It’s a real city
with real gates, real foundations whose builder and maker is God. Our sisters and brothers are
gathered there with an innumerable company of angels.
Who told us this? The Bible. “I don’t believe the Bible.” Well, you don’t have to. Go your way. Do
your thing. Live in your house and have a good time with your leader, man, who dies. Who lies.
Who oppresses. Who steals and cheats. Who is perverted. Who is unbelieving. “Oh, no. I know
good people.” Well, keep your eye on the good people and see how it turns out for you. When
you are on a death bed breathing your last, what does a good person do for you? A good
person cannot save you. A good person cannot solve your problem. There is no answer except
Let’s go. Let’s finish it up here. This is good. vs. 13-14. He is so humble. He is so kind. He is so
patient to you and me and the unbeliever. You might say I don’t believe. I’m not a Christian.
We’re talking to you. We want to reason with you. We want to encourage you. We’ve all been
there. We all know what it is to be in unbelief. We all know what it is to have a hundred
questions about the Bible. But you have listening ears. Are you interested? Do you have a
searching heart? Do you realize your life is in trouble? Do you know that you need a Savior? Do
you know that there is only one that can wash away my sin, nothing but the blood of Jesus. Oh,
who can wash away? It’s a stain that I cannot get rid of. It’s a problem that I can never solve. It’s
an arrogance that never leaves me. It’s a blindness that never, it can never be resolved. Though
I take the anointing salve and take much nitre and alkaline and take vinegar and all kinds of
soaps and detergents, I cannot change my heart. It must be something greater.
So here we go. vs. 15. Notice. There is heaven and there is earth. There are the angels and
then there is a child in Bethlehem. Well, I am of the earth. I won’t believe until I see it. Well, go
to Bethlehem and see it. Go and see it. Go to Bethlehem and see it. Go to Israel one day. Go to
Jerusalem. Go to the Sea of Galilee. Go and see it. Read the prophets and see it. Read church
history and see it. Go and see it.
Have you seen a miracle? We have. We have seen miracles. I was preaching once in Europe.
This woman had a tumor in her breast and nobody knew about it. But as I was preaching, she
felt the warmth go through her body. She went into the bathroom to examine herself and it was
gone. She went to the hospital, and there was no sign of it. She said that God had healed her. It
was a serious thing. God did it. Have you seen a healing? Have you heard a word? Do you
believe the prophets? Do you know the tomb is empty? Do you realize that Christ is the
answer? Have you come to Jesus? Have you believed in him with your heart? Open your heart
up to God.
No, we are a proud people. A blind people like the Jews. Like the Jews. The Lord said to the
Jews, I’ve spread out my hands all day long to a disobedient and gainsaying people. The end of
Romans 10. I’ve held out my hands. I like to think because I see the cross, God held out his
hands all day long to these people and can you see that? Yes.
Well, I’m closing. I’ll read this last cause it brings it home to you. Because this holiday is a
precious one, but it doesn’t mean much unless Christ is alive today. If he can do these things
today, if he can visit you in your house today; if he can come into your heart and into your life
today, if he can bring health to a church today. If he can bring revival to a community and touch
a group of teenagers and various people of all kinds. If the feast is for all and not just 2,000
years ago the shepherds and Anna and Simeon and Mary and Joseph and the wise men, but if
it is for us today and this is what he says, James 5:13.
I was feeling good today, so I told my wife when I got out of bed, I just want to sing psalms. I’m
merry. I’m happy. I’m joyful. So I was singing some psalms out of the book before I did my
morning devotional. And just singing psalms. What a beautiful thing cause this is real. Cause
Jesus came into my house and he set me free. And he kicked the ___out. Who did he kick out?
Okay. I don’t want you to be offended by this. He kicked out who? Hebrews 12 he uses the word
“bastard.” I’m not swearing in the pulpit. I’m just quoting the Bible. He kicked the bastard out.
Yeah. Do you know what a bastard is? A child without a father. And you know who that is? The
devil. He doesn’t have a father. And you know when he came into this world, he wants this world
to be that way. We have no father. I am in charge he says. I am in this house.
Jesus came in and he kicked the ___ out, didn’t he? Yeah, he did. He put him under his heel.
He crushed his head. He took the venom out. He destroyed the snake. He destroyed the lie.
You cannot lie to me. I mean we are liars, but Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life.
And when we have the truth, it sets us free.
And we get happy. Is there any merry among you? Anybody happy? Let him sing psalms. But
let’s say it doesn’t happen always because sometimes it says are any sick among you. Yes.
Keep John Nielson in prayer. I believe he’s going to get out of the hospital. Anyone else, I’m not
mentioning all the names. Is any sick among you? vs. 14-15. The prayer because Christ is alive
and real. vs. 15. Thank you, Jesus. vs. 16. That that house will not be a house of lies, but a
house of love, a house of freedom, a house of truth, a house of deliverance.
The demons flee from the house. They cannot handle it because we have the joy of the Lord is
our strength. Because truth is greater than their lies. And we go, boo! Be gone! Resist the devil
and he will flee from you. He does not like that house. This is a house that God has built. This is
the house that stands. This is a house that is from God. This is a house that’s not afraid. It’s not
afraid. We are not afraid. We are not afraid. We are not of this world. We are not afraid. We are
not afraid. We are not afraid. We are not afraid. Christian people are the most joyful people on
the earth, but they are the most realistic. We get sick, too, but we pray and he raises us up.
I met a man in Israel. He told me – he was an old man – he said I had cancer three times, and
every time God has healed me. He was from Britain, Great Britain. So I spent some time talking
to him and listening and just being encouraged. He goes every time it was a total miracle. I was
healed of cancer. I said how old are you? I think he was 89 or something now, and he got it
when he was in his 60’s or 70’s and a beautiful story.
I just want to say we are Christian people, and we have our problems, too. And we have our
discouragement. And we can have our depression and we can withdraw and we can hide and
we can go away and live in a house of lies. And be oppressed and be troubled by it. But that’s
not what the angels said to the shepherds. They said peace, good will toward men. Peace on
earth. I bring you tidings of great joy. It’s over. I want you to be free, God says.
And then he says lastly, vs. 16b. Do you know that your prayers are powerful? We are praying
for our communities. We are praying for our lives. We are praying for our families. We are
praying for missions, world missions. We are praying for people to go to the mission field with
the message and just preach for 30 days. Morning and night. Morning and night for 30 days.
And then pack your bags and go to the next country. And preach for 30, 60, 90 days until God
says stay here. I have many people in this city. That’s in the book of Acts.
This is the way we live now. We are people that are – yes, we have our family, our possessions.
We have our normal life, but one thing we cannot have is a house in bondage. No lies. No lies.
God cannot lie and nor can you. You and I are not living in lies. We have good news and great
joy for all people. And if we get it right in Baltimore in our church, do you know that the word will
go around the world? That the church in Baltimore is healthy. The people in Baltimore are
servants. The people in Baltimore have a spirit of zeal. The spirit of Baltimore, they pray
fervently and God answers.
But aren’t they people of like passion as us? This is, I’ll finish. You guys are awesome. Look at
verse 17. What’s the word there? He was a man who could get afraid of Jezebel. He was a man
who could get up in the morning and get up and ahhh. He was a moody man maybe. He was a
man emotional maybe. He was a man with ups and downs. He was a man of like passions as
us. But it didn’t stop him from praying. And he prayed because he was righteous. God shut the
heavens for three and a half years. Then three and a half years later he prayed again and
opened the heavens. A man of God. A man of like passions as we. Where does he come from?
Not that kind of house. Not that kind. He comes from the house that God has given us through
Jesus Christ. Christ is the head of the church and we are his people.
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