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Salvation for our world

December 25, 2015

Christmas’ Eve12375183_583828281780573_4759845665576844695_o

For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people.  It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,  while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,  who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.

Titus 2:11-14

 

Perhaps this Christmas, we are coming to church because we want to find shelter. For 2000 years, the Christian church always served as a refuge, a material shelter as well as a spiritual shelter. Every time I was on vacation and Sunday came, I have always wanted to go to a church. Often when I was vacationing there were no evangelical churches; most Churches open on Sundays were Catholic churches. And I liked to enter them, if only to pray and be silent and to search in that quiet church for the presence of God. That is a spiritual refuge. There are many people that when they go to church, they seek that spiritual refuge, and that’s good. If you are coming to church today for that reason you’ll find not only spiritual refuge in this church but also a message for your life: One of the most important messages of the year, the central message of Christmas.

“Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.” – These were the words of Martin Luther. Why did he say that? Because he had hope. Because he lived with faith and joy despite all of the world’s problems. Do you have that kind of joy and hope? If you choose, you can also have it.

In these troubled times, with so much news about wars, refugees, violence, political corruption in many countries and people suffering, which is certainly not very different from other years and decades, we want to find spiritual refuge in the church.

The spiritual refuge that we can find in the church today, we can also find on any Sunday of the year, because the Spirit of God is here: Jesus promised us: “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” (Mt 18:20) Here we receive from God the strength and non human power we need for each day of the week and for each week of the year to be victorious and blessed Christians that not only have their own strength but also have the strength of God to live.

The word for today tells us and teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldly passions so that we can live in this world with justice, piety and self-control.
It shows us what the formula is for a better life on this planet while we’re on our way to the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ at the end of time. Jesus Christ has given us the recipe: reject ungodliness and human passions. Ungodliness means the rejection of God, the rejection of faith in God and the rejection of obedience to the Word of God. Every time we disconnect from the church, we stop praying and reading the Bible, we are generating more ungodly people in the world and that generates a worsening world. Human passions mean the messy and disorderly life of human beings without God. Human beings without God, without respect for the word of God, they may be smart, intelligent, but not wise. A computer can be intelligent, but it’s not wise. Wisdom is knowing to do the right things in life. If we know how to do the right things in this world so that everything goes well, we will approach the wisdom of God. The wisdom of God is found in His word and that is the Bible. Human beings without God speak many stupid things about the Bible, believing themselves important and intelligent. But God is not only intelligent, He is extremely intelligent; but more importantly, He is wise. Wisdom can only be achieved when we are connected to God. Statesmen and rulers always seek the wisdom to rule the world and smother human passions; the best and only way is to turn to God.
Through the apostle, Jesus gives us the solution to solve the world’s problem, and not just the world’s, but also yours and your family’s problem: and that is SALVATION. Jesus came to this world, was born, lived, grew up, preached, died on a cross, and rose again to give us one more chance, to give the world, all generations, our family and you one more chance. And this salvation is offered through grace, that is: it’s free, it costs nothing. You just have to make the most important decision of your life and risk believing in Him; trust Him, give your life to Him; start living a new life as a true Christian. Trust your life to him and he will give you salvation beyond this life.
Your life will never be the same. And you also be able to enjoy a higher quality of life, a blessed life, in this world that is heading to an end when Jesus returns. God wants to bless you tonight and give you refuge in this church and to give you the change you were looking for. But everything depends on you, today. What should you do? Ask God for forgiveness for your sins, for having been separated from Him. Accept Him as your Lord and God and decide to take a step of faith, giving your life to him and his church. If you have done it, then you can wish yourself a merry Christmas, because it will be really happy for you.

If this is your desire, pray with me: “Lord Jesus, tonight, I want to celebrate a happy Christmas, but happy because I have found salvation. Help me to really give myself to you so that from tomorrow on I can show that I am saved, not only by a decision made but by the facts and deeds through my transformed life. Help me to give myself to you in faith and spirit, In the name of Jesus. Amen

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