Archive for Advent

12-23-18 Kevin Goins - Angels We Have Heard on High

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Dr. Kevin Goins, Advent, Christmas by facatl on December 28th, 2018

“Angels We Have Heard on High” Luke 1:26-38

Most of the characters of Christmas give something to the Christ child at his birth. The angels give their “Glorias,” which is what our carol today highlights, the shepherds give their worship, and the wise men give gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Mary, however, is one of the few who gave gifts, not to the baby, but to God the Father. What did Mary give God for Christmas?

I The first thing Mary gave to God was her____________ (126-27).
A. In that day engagement was very different – it was not p__________ for marriage, it was p________ of marriage.
B. Gabriel tells Mary that God wants her to give birth to a child who will ____ be the offspring of her husband Joseph.
C. At this point, Mary had no reason to believe she would not be ___________ by Joseph.

II The second thing Mary gave to God was her ________ (1:28-35).
A. It’s frightening enough for a young girl to think of having a baby, but this birth would be u________ any other birth e______.
B. The Old Testament said that no one can see God and l_______ – So, how could Mary give birth to the ______ of God and live?

III The third thing Mary gave to God was her t__________ (1:36-38).

IV What are you willing to give God for Christmas?
A. Maybe we need to give God our ____________.
B. Maybe we need to give God our ____________.
C. Maybe we need to give God our ____________.

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12-16-18 Kevin Goins - Angels From the Realms of Glory

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Advent, Christmas by facatl on December 19th, 2018
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12-09-2018 Kevin Goins - Go Tell It On The Mountain

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Dr. Kevin Goins, Advent, Bible, Christmas by facatl on December 11th, 2018

“Go, Tell It on the Mountain” Luke 2:8-20

Go, Tell It on the Mountain is one of the spirituals which African slaves in the United States sang to celebrate the birth of Jesus. If people enslaved on plantations found the desire to lift up their voices and enthusiastically proclaim the birth of the Savior, it should be even easier for us to do so. But it is not easy. What can we learn from the shepherd’s story which will encourage us to proclaim the good news of the birth of the Savior?

I First, the Shepherds teach us that it helps if you don’t have a degree in ________ or ___________ (2:8-9).
Why would God choose to reveal the birth of his Son first to
Shepherds instead of the priests and religious leaders?
1. The Savior who was born was n____ a__ a_____ what the
religious leaders were looking for.
2. God wants people to trust _____, not all the religious e_________ they have, not all the religious a__________ they carry out.
B. People who can talk about Jesus in their own w______, without religious w______ - they have a real advantage.

II Second, the shepherds teach us that if you want to talk to people about Jesus, it helps to be t___________ (2:9-14).
A. The message of the angels is like the ministry of the Holy Spirit:
1. The angels c_______ the Shepherds.
2. The angels bring g______ n______ to the Shepherds.
3. The angels specifically tell the Shepherds about the birth of a Savior who is “______ the ______.”
B. The ministry of the angels to the Shepherds is a p_________ of the ministry of the Holy Spirit.

III Third, the Shepherds teach us that if you want to talk to people about Jesus it helps to spend time with the h______ f_______(2:15-16).

IV Finally, the Shepherds teach us that if you want to talk to people about Jesus, it helps to be a g___________ (2:17-20).

 

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12-24-17 Kevin Goins The Forgotten Characters of Christmas part 3

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Advent, Christmas by facatl on December 27th, 2017

Not “Ho, Ho, Ho,” but “Bah, Bah, Bah!”

We have been focusing our attention this Advent on the forgotten characters of Christmas.  Today we turn our attention to another forgotten group: the animals of Christmas.   

I        Some believe the animals are not Christmas characters, for several reasons:

  1. First, animals are not Christmas characters because they are not i____________.
  2. Second, some believe the animals are not Christmas characters because they are not h___________.
  3. Third, some say the animals are not Christmas characters because associating them with the Messiah is d_____________ to God.

II But if animals were a part of the Christmas story, what does their involvement teach us about Christmas?

  1. First, the animals teach us that Christmas is a c___________ event.
  2. If you think God doesn’t really care about animals, you have m___________ your Bible.
  3. God not only saved _______ and his family with the _____, he also saved all the animals of the earth.
  4. When God delivered the c_______ of I________ in the Exodus, he also delivered their animals.
  5. God’s command to remember the S_________, not only was to protect the people, but also to give animals a day of rest.
  6. When the Prophet Isaiah writes about what the coming of the Messiah will mean, he does not limit it only to what it will mean for _________.
  7. Revelation ____:___ says that Messiah’s ultimate salvation will impact all creation.
  8. The animals in the Christmas story are not _________. The birth of the Messiah is good news for them, because it is good news for _______ _________.
  9. Second, the animals teach us that Christmas is for those who are h___________ enough to receive the good news.
  10. There is nothing p_______ or e_________ about the way animals live.
  11. Why are there people who are offended at the humble circumstances into which Jesus was born? They understand that if Jesus lived in a humble s________, then he might call them into a humble l________ as well.
  12. But there is an upside: the animals who surrounded Jesus at his birth tell us that you cannot come to Jesus with your p_____.  But they also tell us that there is ___ ____ on earth who is not i_______ to come.
  13. Last, the animals teach us that the Savior born in Bethlehem
    deserves the worship of ______.

III The transformation the Messiah came to this earth to bring has not yet reached its fulfillment, but it is e_____ n____ at work.

 

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12-10-17 Kevin Goins The Forgotten Characters of Christmas, part 2

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Advent, Christmas by facatl on December 12th, 2017

“The Forgotten Characters of Christmas” (Pt 2)  Matthew 2:16-18

Everyone connects the Christmas holiday with happy times.  We have parties, dinners, family get-togethers, gift-giving, special foods, all of which are intended to fill people with joy.  One thing we do not associate with Christmas is mourning.  We do our best to exclude mourning from the celebration of Christmas because mourning and Christmas are like oil and water; they do not mix.  But one of the forgotten characters of Christmas will not allow us to do this.  In fact, they bring mourning front and center right into the very heart of Christmas.  But, why is there mourning at Christmas?  

I There is mourning at Christmas because there is s__________ and h________ all year long.

  1. One who clearly demonstrated selfishness and hatred was _____.
  2. ___________ of ___________ also ruled with selfishness and hatred because he feared the g________ of I_______.
  3. We may brag about how civilized we have become, but the killing of children is even m______ c_________ today.

II Second, there is mourning at Christmas because, where there is great j_____, there is always the potential for great s___________.

  1. Rachel is a powerful reminder of how m_________ and m___________, which has the potential to bring great joy, can also bring great sorrow.
  2. Rachel is the mother who weeps, not just for her own sorrow, but for the sorrow of all her c___________, g___________, and g______-g___________ throughout the coming generations.

III Third, there is mourning at Christmas because the d________ d____________ comes before the b_________ l________.

IV Finally, why does Matthew r_______ the happiness of the Christmas story by telling us about this terrible m________?

  1. Because r______ l_____ is filled with many things which cause mourning.
  2. And the Rachels of the world will write us off as hopelessly n_______ and o_____ of t_______ if we pretend that angel choirs and adoring shepherds are all that Christmas is about.

 

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12-03-17 Kevin Goins - The Forgotten Characters of Christmas

“The Forgotten Characters of Christmas”  Matthew 2:1-20

Every year at this time we Christians focus our attention on the Christmas story and we spotlight the well-known characters of Christmas: the holy family, the shepherds, and the wisemen. But there are some supporting characters who often get overlooked. That is why for this Advent we are going to look at the people who are not pictured on Christmas cards and who are not sung about in Christmas carols. We are going to look at these forgotten characters because they have something to tell us about the birth of Jesus.

I The first overlooked character was not only mentioned in the Bible; he was the inspiration for one of the most well-known non-biblical
Christmas stories of all time: H____ ___ G________ S__________ C___________.
A. The Grinch’s words, “I must find some way to s_______ Christmas from coming,” is what connects this fictional character with a r_____ person from the Christmas story.
B. This real historical figure is ___________, the ________ of the ___.
C. The one who stood behind Herod, filling him with hate for the Messiah, was the one who inspires all hate: the _________.

II But why was Herod disturbed by the birth of Jesus? Two reasons:
A. First, the wisemen let Herod know that he was not the o_____ King of the Jews – he had c_____________.
B. Second, Herod was upset because the wisemen came to w_________ the newborn King of the Jews.

III What is significant about all this is that both the story of the real
person, Herod, and the story of the fictional character, the Grinch, teach the same truth: that there are p______ and f_______ who want to k______ Christmas from c_______.
A. Every year we Christians are amazed at how determined some are to make Christmas about a_________ and e___________ other than Christ.
B. What we are seeing is the G____________________ of American culture – the effort to keep the r_____ Christmas from coming.
C. But, no matter what we call it, what should we do about it?
1. First, r___________.
2. Second, l_________ and o________.
3. Third, d_____ w__________.

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12-25-16 The Light That Transforms

“The Light That Transforms”  Luke 1:26-38, 46-55

In this season of Advent we have been looking at the light that came into the world when the Messiah  was born.  We have seen how that light inspired the prophets, how it encouraged the
shepherds, and how it led the wisemen.  Today we are looking at how this light has the power to transform us and our focus is going to be on Mary and Joseph.  What does their story teach us about the transformation which Advent brought to this world?         

1. First, the transforming power of Advent came at just the r_______ t________ (1:26-28).

2. Second, this transformation was designed for ______________ (1:29-30).

3. Third, this transformation came at a _________ (1:31-38).

 

 

 

 

IV Finally, this transformation c____________ _____________ (1:46-55).

 

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12-11-16 The Light that Leads the Wise

“The Light that Leads the Wise”  Matthew 2:1-12

God has created us with the inability to be truly satisfied with anything less than the life that only he can give. This explains the natural human tendency to yearn for something better. God has given each of us the desire to know him and to find our satisfaction only in him. But how do we find what our hearts are truly seeking? The light of Advent led the Wisemen to find what they were seeking, but how can we be led by that light? What do the Wisemen teach us?

I First, the Wisemen teach us that you cannot find what you are looking for by w__________ on a s__________ (2:1-2).

II Second, the Wisemen teach us that you cannot find what you are looking for by relying only on n______________ and h________________ sources (2:3-10).

III Third, the Wisemen teach us that you cannot find what you are looking for until you are willing to be d____________ to what it is you s_________ (2:11).

IV Finally, the Wisemen teach us that you cannot find what are looking for unless you are willing to c____________ d_______________ (2:12).

12-04-16 The Light That Encouraged the Shepherds Luke 2:8-16

“The Light That Encourages”  Luke 2:8-16
Everyone is susceptible to discouragement, to that feeling that whatever is currently troubling us is hopeless. People even feel discouraged at Christmas time. But that makes no sense. Christmas, or Advent is the good news which ought to drive out discouragement. It certainly did that for the Shepherds. The Shepherds had good reason to be discouraged, but they found even better reason to be encouraged. Today we are looking at how the light of Advent encouraged the Shepherds.

I The Shepherds had good reason to be discouraged:
A. First there was the discouragement of their p___________ (2:8a).

B. Second, there was the discouragement of their r__________ l_____ (2:8b).

II But, the Shepherds found encouragement in three ways:

A. First, they were encouraged to know that God had not r____________ them (2:9).

B. Second, they were encouraged to know that God was s__________ them a S________________ (2:10-11).

C. Third, there were encouraged to know that they had been invited to a p_______________ e___________________ with the Savior (2:12-16).

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11-27-16 The Light that Inspired the Prophets

“The Light That Inspired the Prophets”  Isaiah 11:1-10

The Prophet Isaiah lived 750 years before the birth of Jesus. It was a time of great prosperity, but also a time of social evil and spiritual deadness. It was in this time of darkness that God inspired Isaiah with the light of inspiration, a light that enabled him to see the coming of the Messiah. The message that God gave Isaiah had three highlights:

I First, God inspired Isaiah with a message of h________ (11:1-3).
-In verses 2-3 Isaiah tells us what makes this new branch of David’s family so special:
1. In verse 2 he says, “The _______ of the ________ will rest on him.
2. Then he describes three pairs of spiritual qualifications which the Messiah will have:
a. The Spirit of w________ and u____________.
b. The Spirit of c__________ and of p___________.
c. The Spirit of k__________ and of the f_________ of the Lord.

II Second, God inspired Isaiah with a message of w__________(11:4-5).

III Third, God inspired Isaiah with a message of e______________(11:6-10).

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