Searching for....

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sermon 02192012 Quinquagesima Sunday

May the words of my mouth and the meditations of our hearts, be pleasing in Your sight, O Lord, our Rock and our Redeemer!  AMEN.

Heavenly Father, may Your Word guide us and enable us to see our being chosen as Your children was not chance, but Your divine plan.  For You have anointed us, changed us and made us Yours by and through the gift of the Holy Spirit.  May Your Holy Spirit speak to us and guide us as we chart our course for all of us Saints here at Emmanuel.  AMEN.
During the last two weeks we have been lost and thirsty and heard how God struck the Rock and provided us drink.  How God feeds us through the sacrament of the Altar like this morning through and by the Word made flesh that has dwelt among us, Jesus Christ.  As we conclude our series this morning, we hear how God chooses a King, anoints him and changes him and us through the power of His Word for His Work.

This May Michele and I are looking forward to the movie, the Avengers arriving in theaters.  For those of you who don’t know this is the Marvel Comic Books that have been made for  the big screen thrillers with hits like Iron Man and Thor.  One of the characters from the Avengers is Captain America.  When first introduced to Steve Rogers in the film entitled, Captain America, he is 98 lbs. sopping wet, scrawny and according to military standards, not even acceptable to be a soldier.  The military personnel see nothing but failure and weakness in Steve, but the scientist who is the major advisor for the project, sees in Steve the keen intellect, the self-sacrifice and especially the heart of a warrior.
In our Old Testament lesson this morning, Samuel like the scientist has the ability given by God to not see the outward trappings, but to see the heart.  We heard how Samuel looked upon the seven sons of Jesse, including Eliab, Abinadab and Shammah, but Samuel looking with the eyes of man like the military looked at appearance, but God spoke to Samuel, because “the Lord looks at the heart” and rejected each of the sons of Jesse.  Finally, Jesse sends for the youngest, the sheep tender.  Now he [that is David] was ruddy, with beautiful eyes and a handsome appearance.  This the last of Jesse’s children, had been tending the families flock, he probably hadn’t bathed, was dirty and had been summoned by his father to pass before Samuel.

And what occurs, “And the LORD said, “Arise, anoint him; for this is he.  This boy, this child, God looked at his heart and God chose him.  God looked through the outer man and saw in David, the shepherd and the King that he would become.  God looks at us as well.  God see’s through our designer clothes our bib overalls, our John Deere, Fontanelle, Pioneer, K-State or KU apparel and see’s our heart.  Through the sweat of our brow the Kansas fine dirt, oil or grease that cakes on our face, arms, lips and skin, God penetrates to our soul.  For God Who formed us in our mother’s womb, chooses us!
Samuel then “took the horn or oil and anointed him [that is David] in the midst of his brothers”.  God anointed through Samuel, David to be King.  Just as when we baptize and anoint the head and heart with the chrism of oil in the sign of the cross sealing the child as God’s, Samuel, took the horn of oil and anointed David.  Right in front of his older brothers, this child, God seeing the heart of David anoints him and makes him King of Israel.

As David was anointed in the sight of his brother’s, father and family, “the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David”.  God’s Spirit descended upon David and signed, sealed and delivered him to be the King of all of Israel.  God’s Spirit inhabited his heart and would lead David to become the greatest King of all of Israel.  Not only would God’s Spirit inspire David to write the Psalms which we use for our liturgy, God’s Spirit would guide the people to become a great nation.  God made David who he would become, because His Holy Spirit would rest upon him, just as it rests upon us today.  It changed David so profoundly that God foretold David the Messiah would come from his line.  The Messiah that would come to save God’s people would be of the off-spring of David.  David’s life was changed by God and we are grafted into the promise to David, because of our baptism into Jesus Christ Who changes us.
For we who have been baptized have been sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, baptized into the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit and we are changed.  As Luther would say, we are still sim ul ustis et pecator – saint and sinner – at the same time, but by the blood of the Lamb of God Who came to take away the sin of the World, God has changed us.  God has redeemed us through His Son, Jesus Christ’s life, death and resurrection and made us heirs of eternal life.

As heirs of eternal life, we have been chosen, anointed, changed and enabled to worship, work and witness God’s work through our lives.  We come as chosen children to worship our Lord and Savior and partake of His Feast He offers to us that gives us eternal life.  This food of His precious Body and Blood, broken and shed for us for the forgiveness of sins, satisfies our spiritual thirst and hunger and enables us to work as God’s children for His glory, whether here in the church, in the community or in our service to God for His Glory.  This then is the witness we become not only for our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ here within the four walls of the church, but also the witness for those who have not heard what Jesus Christ has done for each of us on the Cross of Calvary.  Our witness brings glory to God, for it is Him, God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit that we come and worship on Sunday, His message that we come to hear proclaimed, His work in worship and the church and our witness for others of God’s choosing us, anointing us and changing all of us saints who gather here at Emmanuel. 
Yet, the question still remains, “What is God’s Plan for Emmanuel?”  God’s plan isn’t a difficult long drawn out set of steps or challenges for us to accomplish, God’s plan of salvation has been completed and we now are empowered to proclaim the message of salvation through Jesus Christ innocent death for each and every one of us.  Through Jesus precious Body and Blood that we receive, we are called by the Holy Spirit to worship, sent out to work in our world modeling the message of salvation that changes us and therefore witnesses of what God’s Holy Spirit has done in each of our lives.  For the promises of God are sure, His Word will not return without accomplishing His purpose and we having been baptized, anointed and grafted into the promise of salvation.  May all of us in unity discern God’s plan for Emmanuel and fulfill it for all of the saints gathered here at Emmanuel, in Goodland, Northwesk KS and our world.  AMEN.
//trial script