Filled to Spill; Luke 1:67-80
Sunday message with Pastor Donnie 02.16.20
1. Zach is Back, are you?
2. God uses men to speak.
3. Your life is before God
4. Are you a light or a shadow?
Let’s recap last week’s study. We learned that God’s timing is always perfect. He set in motion the perfect day to do a surgery because the body of man would be ready like never before to have this happen to it. We learned that rejoicing together is always amazing and lastly we learned that the Beetles did not create the 8th day.
67 Now his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying:
This is such an amazing point to set a campfire ring around. The Spirit came upon Zacharias. We know that there are different fillings of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit came upon him and he spoke or prophesied. Prophecy is speaking forth for God and of course speaking forth of things to come.
Don’t forget that Zach here would have 3 months with Mary also. 9 months his mouth was shut. I would imagine he read and prayed and wrote many things during this season. Many things probably swirled in his head and the Word of God was deep within him. He was a well of “oh my goodness” and “what revelation would have been continually spinning in his head”. I love how God has given us the Holy Spirit. We know the Holy Spirit is a person and is real and is the 3rd person of the Godhead. We receive the power of the Holy Spirit by Jesus. By believing in Jesus and His finished work on the cross we are sealed in the Holy Spirit, but Jesus said he would give us power as it says in Acts 1:8.
8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.
That same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us, as Jeremy Camp sings but that verse is found in…
10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you
That leads us to the first point
1. Zach is back, are you?
In this room there are many of us who walk and talk the Christian language but for the lack of a better term, we lack fire and faith. We lack love which is the greatest gift of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said he would send the Comforter and give us power. Do you lack power. Do you lack desire?
A light bulb, even if it is solar needs power, this power is quite fascinating. As we discussed a scientific story last week, can we learn a bit about solar light.
Solar energy is produced due to the photovoltaic effect. A photovoltaic panel (also known as solar cell) converts sunlight into electrical energy. The solar cell is made up of multiple layers of crystalline silicon and chemicals that create layers of negatively-charged electrons and positively-charged spaces. When light passes through the solar cell, it excites the negatively-charged electrons and pushes them into the positively-charged spaces. Those spaces then transfer the electron stream as direct current of electricity through the wires in the solar cell for use or to a battery where the power is stored until it is needed.
(NEED THIS SLIDE)
What does this all mean? It needs to have a power source to store that energy to then be given out. Zacharias had 9 months of stored energy. Do any of you know how much stored energy you have? It’s there, you can be filled just like Zacharias, however, I would encourage you to be filled with the Word also so you can grow in the power that God has given us. It’s truly, truly amazing.
Let’s look at what Zacharias said when he was first able to speak after 9 months of silence…
68 "Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, For He has visited and redeemed His people,
69 And has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David,
70 As He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets, who have been since the world began,
2.God uses men to speak.
THOUGHT - When we read the Word of God from Genesis to Revelation, we should read it reverently and with a sense of awe of the truth that what we are reading ultimately is what "He spoke!" When the Bible speaks, God speaks! Do you want to hear a word from God today? Then read the Word of God every day! Ask the Spirit to open your ears to understand what God is saying (Lk 24:45+), and at the same time ask His Spirit to apply it practically to your life giving you by His grace and power a heart to obey! He will!
He uses his Son Jesus and he has used so many men and women to speak and represent himself since the beginning of time.
Zacharias’s first utterance is of blessings. Thanking God, what a way to start.
Here’s something to think about.
THOUGHT - Why did Zacharias address God as the Lord God of Israel? Why did he limit God to Israel? Why did he not address God as the Lord God of the earth? "Zacharias was thinking of God’s promise to Israel, of the glorious fact that the promise of the Messiah was now being fulfilled. He knew nothing of Israel’s rejection of the Messiah, of God’s turning to the Gentiles, of the birth of a new people (the church). Therefore, he did the natural thing: he praised the Lord God of Israel."
Now we see God using men who speak and share the Word of God with people like this all throughout the world. The Ecclesia, the church, the people hear from someone they call a pastor or teacher or someone who understands and speaks forth God’s truths. Zacharias’ was a priest and was fully capable and able.
God speaks also by his physical Creation and rhythms of life. A short recap of this also for remembrance.
The prophetic voice of the Lord had been silent for 400 years. Now, God spoke through Gabriel (Luke 1:13, 1:28), through Elizabeth (Luke 1:41-42), through Mary (Luke 1:46-55), and now through Zacharias. When God spoke again, it was all connected to the theme of Jesus and His work.
Back to the Zacharias’s first words…
71 That we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us,
72 To perform the mercy promised to our fathers and to remember His holy covenant,
73 The oath which He swore to our father Abraham:
74 To grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve Him without fear,
75 In holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our life.
3.Your life is always before God.
Jesus was not a military deliverer as we know. He was and always will be a Savior.
Many people can argue that there is still to this day an active people group living as old as the Jews, however it would be tough to verify. The Hittites the Jebusites, the other tribes listed since the beginning, the Romans, all those people groups are not called by that name. Only a Jew is still called a Jew to this day.
We think about the awful tragedy of the Holocaust. What a sad account of time. Countless leaders and people groups have tried to kill the Jews. I heard it said the other day by the current prime minister of Israel. He said, when people come against the Jews and the Jews being in Israel, they are literally coming against the God of the Bible and written Word of God. Coby and I were struck with a bit of awe when we heard this. I don’t think that Netanyahu is a Christian, but when he says you come against the God of the Bible, it struck a mind-blowing chord of power to realize to some extent it’s true. I know many can argue about what bad things the Jews have done in the Gaza strip and the like. I have read about that stuff too. I often wonder to myself, how far would I go to protect my family, my country, my people group?
I genuinely don’t know where any of this is going. I know the United States is not mentioned in the end times. As I see things now, our country is continually divided with culture and belief, with conviction and politics.
But as for the Christian, don’t forget that your life is always before God. He’s always with you and always a part of everything you’re doing. He allows us to mess up. He allows us to whine and complain. He allows us to do our thing. Even as bad and as good as it gets, He knows about it. He’s in the bunker of your life as the shells of war are flying over your head and all around you.
The last two verses of this passage are one of my life goals. I want to serve him with love and kindness and righteousness because of what has been done for me
76 And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Highest; For you will go before the face of the Lord to prepare His ways,
77 To give knowledge of salvation to His people by the remission of their sins,
78 Through the tender mercy of our God, with which the Dayspring from on high has visited us;
79 To give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.
Are you a light or a shadow?
As we can see what’s going on here, Zacharias is foretelling the things of which John the Baptist will do. He will go before Jesus and talk of Him and let everyone know of what’s going to happen. He will baptize people for the forgiveness of their sins. It will not be a baptism of salvation.
Let’s develop the forgiveness of sins.
Forgiveness of their sins (remission of their sins) - This is the knowledge every person born needs to hear and receive! There is no salvation apart from forgiveness of our sins. This is the message proclaimed by John the Baptist, the Savior's forerunner - "And he came into all the district around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins."
Notice how Paul in Ephesians 1:7 uses the terms associated with forgiveness - salvation, redemption, repentance. Paul writes of this forgiveness in his letter to the Ephesians "In Him (Christ) we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.
If you know your sins are forgiven it sets you free and probably would allow you to feel better about yourself. Feeling better about yourself almost lets you glow. You’re happy. Speaking of glowing however, It’s one thing to let your light shine. It’s another thing to be a welding arc. You obviously can’t look at the sun directly either. But if its pitch black and you light a candle, the dark never consumes the light as long as the light has power or energy to stay lit. Sometimes it’s a lot for people to transfer into their lives. Maybe people have only seen people who love God but not had a radical transformation or seen God doing amazing things in their lives all the time. For me, I know that God has done so many amazing things, that all I want to do is talk about it. I have learned how to temper that now without covering it up.
It’s a real blessing to love people and do it without preaching to them. When they want it, they will ask for it. They will notice there’s something different about me and I will explain when they ask.
Did you see how in verse 79 that the light is given as a way to guide our feet.
This is in direct correlation to what David said in
Psalm 119:105-Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.
That light is just enough to see where you’re walking; right in front of you. Not 20 feet ahead or even 15 but just at best 6 to 7 feet to see what’s around. God’s Word is that, it gives us light to see all around us and see how we handle our lives, if we let Him.
Our feet needed to be guided in peace. Peace is a real deal. Many of us don’t have peace. Lets’ be honest. We all struggle with having peace and walking in peace and maybe even accepting the peace of Jesus and the peace of the Spirit of God. It’s true, it’s normal, we all struggle, we all have this.
That’s why it’s so important that we speak those things into us that we know that God has done, or will do and will continue to do.
We don’t want to be shadows. But the truth of it is this, the famous poet John Foreman said the “shadow proves the sunshine”. A shadow is the proof.
80 So the child grew and became strong in spirit, and was in the deserts till the day of his manifestation to Israel.
The child became strong in Spirit! He was in the desert. He was like us, a desert dweller. It was hot there and it’s hot here. One of the core values or core goals of my wife who is the Next Generation Captain is this; The kids would learn the same things that we are learning here at the service. It’s important for the whole family to be taught the same thing and for the parents to engage the kids on what they learned. It’s so important for all of us to be learning the same passages.
As we close this up
Campus Crusade for Christ developed a Spiritual checklist that I have always found to be amazing. It’s regarding the baptism and/or filling of the Holy Spirit and it goes like this;
Need individual slides for each point.
1. Do you really want to be filled with the Spirit? Matt 5:6- blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be filled
2. Is there any unconfessed sin your life? 1st John 1:9, if we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
3. Is there any area of your life you are unwilling to commit to God? Romans 12:1 I beseech you brethren to present your bodies a living sacrifice to God.
Listen, when you answer those 3 questions posed here, then obey the command that the Apostle Paul has given us
4. Do not be drunk with wine for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit
5. 1 John 5:14-15 and this is the confidence which we have before Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us, and if we know that HE hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the request which we have asked from Him.
May you be filled to be spilled this week.