Christ said the Kingdom belongs to the child-like. The world needs to see us with seriousness and hope about who Jesus is. Without Jesus, the world is plagued with devils and greed and fear and loss. Let’s be like children who believe the best, who believe in angels, and who know that God gave His Son. (Matthew 8:28-34)

Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon 11800
7:00 PM on 12/11/2019

P. Schaller –

Remember the story Christ went to the fig tree and  found no fruit only leaves, Matthew 21. This is Christmas
season and it’s a holiday about God. If the Lord was to look at that as a tree and looking for
fruit, he might not find it. That’s like people. He comes to our life and goes to the tree and
looking for the fruit. We look at the Christmas holiday, and God looks through the holiday and is
looking for fruit. The Jews represented the fig tree.

He wanted to find his Father. He wanted to find fruit but didn’t. He found religion and tradition and people and buying and selling in the temple. He was looking for fruit like he always does. Our hearts are saying God visit us. It’s
empty without you. It’s empty without you. This holiday season we come to God not by nature.
It’s a beautiful time of year but a time for God to visit us and speak to our hearts and find fruit
in our lives and fellowship. Let’s seek him in our hearts tonight. Be seated and have a few
moments of prayer however

God leads you with the person next to you or by yourself. Thank
you. Wasn’t that great to see young people. Young people that sing and serve and rejoice.
Christmas is a great time of year because it is a time when children enjoy. Sometimes they call it
the magic of the holiday. The magic of the season. We could for a moment think of children and
how they enjoy the holiday. Maybe you as a child enjoyed your Christmas season very much.
How many of you did? Not that many.

Tough audience! What does a child see during the season? I don’t mean as a believer but as a child. Santa Claus and the sleigh and the reindeer magically landing on top of the house and giving gifts. Family being together and eating together and sitting in a room without fighting. But with a sense of being together and putting
mistakes aside and problems and disagreements and heartache and having encouragement.
When children are sitting with their family with mom and dad and add to it the Christmas tree
which is out of the ordinary.

We bring a tree from outside into our house. We decorate it. Mom
and dad or mom alone or dad alone depending on the family situation make an effort to
celebrate and rejoice in the season. Added to that is the whole idea of gifts, giving gifts. What is
a gift? It’s something I don’t own but it’s given to me. I don’t have it but someone else has it
and it’s given to me. I receive a gift.

What if they were multiplied and I received two and three and four and my brothers and sisters received two and three and four and mom and dad. Imagine a house filled with gifts, good intentions, good spirit and attitude. Why do children love Christmas? Maybe because the kingdom of God is like a child in Matthew 18. Children understand
that life is to be filled with gifts. Something I don’t earn or deserve, something given freely. I
don’t know why but my mom and dad have a habit.We had a tree from outside and Santa on the roof and music and gifts and we eat together and sit together, and we love each other.

Wow. In my childhood, it was the best time of year. I had five siblings with a generous mom and
dad who gave us things. Our little house was packed with excitement and I could dream like a
child likes to dream. Then we grew up and started to calculate how much things cost, and trees
don’t belong in the living room. We don’t give gifts. We look for justice. We have feelings and
hurt and emotions and arguments and everyday living. On this day, it’s different. It’s like the
kingdom of God is somehow, even the world knows this.

Even the world takes the effort to give gifts and be kind and celebrate and love and care and listen and not argue but somehow believe. I’m using a non-spiritual world. I’m talking in a worldly way maybe but a real true thing that the world recognizes this holiday is different. What I want to say is simple: if you could
think about it, in Psalm. 145, the eyes of all wait upon you; and thou givest them their meat in due
season. You open your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing. Psalm 33:5, John. 3:16, that’s
Christmas. He gave. What does God give?

Everyone of us right today the gift of life. Physical life. Breath. And food. He opens his hand and gives us gifts every day all the time. He gives us gifts and visits us all the time. Somehow people because of nature and our sin we lose the magic of what it means to be alive. We lose the whole sense of grace and become tough people. We
become people who are unthankful and don’t realize. Our eyes are blinded to all the gifts God
gives to us continually and abound towards us are constant and never stop.

When Jesus came, he was amazed at the unbelief. I had a message in Hungary from Matthew 8. I want you to see
something. I don’t want to be too long tonight. Matthew 8:28, I arrived last night from Hungary. I go
over the ocean again and consider it a gift to go there. I was there five days and had an amazing
time together. To come back and know I’m part of you, the Body and the work of God. It’s just
an honor what we are a part of. Matthew 8:28, I want to draw a map of Israel where we are located
here, the Sea of Galilee and the Jordan river and the Dead Sea.

The Gergesenes is the east side of the Sea of Galilee. That’s a geographical area I’d like you to think about being very much like the world we live in. Four things about it. Two men possessed of the devil. The devil is in the
country in such a way that some people cannot go to where those two possessed men are
living. They were fierce. They had a territory and people couldn’t go through there. There are
areas of the world where people are prohibited from going. If you go there it’s not safe. If you
go to that part of the area, there are two demonic men preventing people from going.

Not liberty or freedom in that area. Vs. 29. No Jesus. You are not welcome, Jesus. What do we have
to do with you? We have nothing to do with you. That’s like Christmas without Jesus. That’s like
Christmas without Jesus. He’s at the church of Laodicea knocking on the door. I’ll take a
Buddhist, a Hindu, a Christian but make sure Jesus doesn’t come. He’s not welcome in the
world. Vs. 30. I want to put down “swine” pigs, and then the word “money.” Pigs represented
money. How many were there in the story? 2,000.

A huge amount of money is represented by these 2,000 pigs. In the world we live in there is a lot connected with money: power, sex, entertainment, business. No Jesus. We got our business, our pigs, our money. No Jesus. You’re
not welcome here. Vs. 31-32. Loss. In the world, there is a lot of loss. There is lost souls, lost
lives, lost decisions. Garden of Eden is lost. Lost coin, sheep, son. There is a lot lost. Lost
opportunity, family, freedom, power, loss of wisdom, loss of decision making. There is a lot lost
in this world. You know what happens in the story. Jesus came over here and was told to go
away. He goes away. He went.

Why did he go? To set those two men free. To cast the demons out of the two men. We are in a time where we can’t afford to be anything other than dead serious with Jesus Christ. There is no other time that we should be living more seriously than we are today. Lord, Jesus, come into our area and do whatever you please. If I lose something
and you are there, that’s okay. If I lose swine, that’s okay as long as I got you. You’re the
answer. I want you in my life. They said leave us Jesus. Vs. 33-34. They fled. There were people
that run away from reality.

They are afraid. I was reading that about Saul and David. When Saul saw David’s wisdom, he feared him. I believe that about us. I’m serious about it. The devil can discern the power we have as God’s people. He can recognize the love and the wisdom and the spirit we have. Jesus looks to the tree for fruit. The devil can look into the tree and see there is something there. I cannot touch it. Christ is there. I cannot touch it. I believe the world
recognizes and I believe it in our own hearts. You know when the Spirit speaks to you. You can
discern the voice. Deuteronomy 5.

Now we know you are God that talks to men and they do not die. Wow. I read that one night in Hungary. Vs. 14 I think. You speak to men and they do not die. Amen. Wow. Matthew. 8:34, there we have that arrow going this way. They said leave us and he did. He got in the boat and went back where he came from. Our world is so overwhelming. Our spiritual life is so overwhelming to the world we live in. Leave us. You are radical, nuts, crazy. Leave us. This is like missions. Missions is beautiful. It’s going where the devil is living and saying Jesus is here
and he loves you.

Those two men liberated from the demons and he sent them back home.
Later when Jesus came back, they were waiting for him. Mark 5, they were waiting for him. They
wanted him to come back. I believe that happens in the work of God. There are many sides to
God’s work. Don’t underestimate the work. When wise men came to the baby what did they
see? A baby. The baby was there. Did that baby do any miracles? No. Did he say any words? Did
he give a message?

Was he a powerful preacher or miracle worker or did he walk on water? No,
he was a baby. Why did they say he is the Christ? Why did they kneel down and worship him,
the baby? No one can explain that. Simeon knew it. Anna knew it. The centurion soldier who
watched the crucifixion said surely this is the Son of God when Christ was on the cross not
doing a miracle or preaching a message. There are things we do that we know nothing about.
There are things people see that we can never explain.

There is an anointing on us as God’s people to make a statement that my Son is raised from the dead and seated on the right hand. He gives to whoever seeks him eternal life. When we look at the holiday, look at it not just this
one but to say – you know that movie, This is a wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart? The thing
we loved about it is the angel said to him, Clarence and George Bailey, George, you have been
made for a certain reason. You have a purpose. There is something going on here you don’t
know about. This is a holiday when people need hope and need a message.

They need to be told. Not only during the holiday but the whole year, through the ten years and decades we
live. The world is suffering just like this area. They have demonic men and you can’t get
through. They are so fierce. They do not have Jesus. They have heartaches and they fear. He is
telling them go tell your families what I have done for you. That is our message in this world. If I
don’t have Christ, I have nothing. I have my sin. I have loss. I have demons and accept it. That
part of the country they accepted it as normal.

That’s sad. Fear is not normal. Ask a child. Stealing things. I read an article in a British newspaper how much is stolen out of 5-star hotels: cutlery, glassware, TVs and even mattresses. They take a mattress down the lift to the bottom garage and steal the mattress out of the motel. The world is lost, crying, suffering, empty,
taking, taking, taking. Ask a child if you want to find out what should be normal. No, it’s to give.
It’s for mom and dad to give, to love, to have magic, to believe in angels, to believe in Jesus.
What’s normal is to be receiving and giving.

What is normal is to receive and forgive. To sing a song and kiss with each other and show affection and love. God made the world to be a world of gifts and giving every day. God made the world and he gave his Son, so we have that which doesn’t pass away. We would have his mind, wisdom and love. The world will never learn the
lesson because they don’t have the Spirit of Jesus. I heard a thing from P. Stevens. He said when
you are tempted, God loves you and when you sin, he’s an enemy and when you sin, he
immediately is your friend.

When I sin, God is against my sin and he’s my enemy in a sense but
when I sin, it doesn’t change the fact he is my friend and he loves me. He gives me grace. Have
you sinned? You have the God of all grace. He is the God that visits you in the demonic
territory. Is he the answer for every troubled heart? Absolutely. God gave his Son so we would
have this eternal life that never passes away. He hates our sin and loves us. He’s a friend of
publicans and sinners. You know what I mean. I don’t need to balance it.

 

Please enjoy these sermon notes from the messages preached at Greater Grace Church in Baltimore. These notes are provided to aid in your study and understanding of the Word. Note that these notes do not represent complete, word-for-word transcriptions. Also, they may contain omissions as well as some errors in spelling and structure, etc., as we attempt to provide them as soon as possible. Our hope is that these notes serve as a way to help you search and connect with messages on related subjects and passages. Thank you for your interest in the ministry of Greater Grace.