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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Sermon 06032012 Trinity 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.

Let us pray, O Holy Trinity of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Today we celebrate the culmination of the church year with the deepest and best expression of the Trinity in the Athanasian Creed.  We began in Advent preparing our hearts for Jesus Christ arrival, celebrated His birth, life and ministry with His disciples.  Mourned His crucifixion on Golgotha and gathered with the disciples in the Upper Room where He walked through the door of our heart.  We saw Him ascend to be with the Father at His Right Hand and last week celebrated the coming of the Holy Spirit.  May we today surrounded by the saints of Heaven lift our confession of faith in the words of the Athanasian Creed as one voice for all the world, including all of us saints gathered here at Emmanuel this morning.  AMEN.
Trinity in Unity and Unity in Trinity! 

In the middle of the woods here on earth gathered three men.  One was egotistical and a playboy, another was celebrated in myth and legend and the third was the peace maker.  Individually, Iron Man, Thor and Captain America have faced evil and overcome it, but in the latest Avengers movie, these three men have to work as a team, put ego’s to the side and work with each other to face Loki and the intergalactic menace that he is unleashing on planet earth.

Unlike Iron Man, Thor and Captain America, the Trinity that we celebrate today on this Trinity Sunday clearly portrays and perfectly fulfills the slogan, “Trinity in Unity and Unity in Trinity”.  From the beginning, God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit created the world!  I love to pull out my King James Bible and read Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth!”  This passage even in Hebrew, the language that Moses inspired by the Holy Spirit recorded, is poetic and beautiful.  When Moses wrote the word ‘God’, it is clearly masculine, but interestingly enough it is also ‘plural’.  Hence, in the creation of the World, God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit were active and participatory in the forming and shaping of the World.  Even today God the Father continues to preserve the world that we farm, drive on and live in.

Just as the Father in the Apostles and Nicene Creed in the first article is the first person in the Trinity and is the creator of heaven and earth, Jesus Christ, the second person of the Trinity has a purpose.  Jesus Christ, God the Son redeemed the World.  Having been born of the Virgin Mary in a stable in Bethlehem, changed water into wine in Cana, walked the streets of Capernaum, Jerusalem, Jericho and the Jordan River and walked on the water of the Sea of Galilee, Jesus Christ chose to go to Golgotha and die on the Cross for You and for me in order to redeem us from our sins.  Jesus Christ became sin to set us free from the bondage that surrounds and binds us to this earth.  Our greed, our distrust, our selfishness that is manifest in our relationships, whether between husband and wife, Father and Son, sister and brother, Jesus Christ died in order for all of us to be redeemed by His innocent blood and repair our relationships with one another.  We confess today that Jesus Christ, second person of the Trinity redeems us from sin, death, the devil, hell and damnation in order that we may be with Him in His kingdom.  Two weeks ago we celebrated His ascension into heaven and now Jesus Christ sits at the Right Hand of God the Father, because He has redeemed us.  This is not a future fact, but a present fact and reality that we celebrate with our confession of what Jesus Christ did for all of mankind in the Athanasian Creed.

Yet, now that Jesus Christ has ascended into heaven, the Holy Spirit, the third person in the Holy Trinity sent on Pentecost has been sent to sanctify the World.  The Holy Spirit Who was with the Father and Son and took part in the creation of the World, now makes you and me Holy.  Luther’s explanation of the Holy Spirit is crystal clear of the Work of the Holy Ghost.  The Holy Ghost testifies to the truth of what God the Father did in sending His Son Jesus Christ into the world.  The Holy Ghost also and most importantly calls, gathers and enlightens us about the work of redemption found in the salvific effort of Jesus Christ.  As the Third Person of the Holy Trinity, the Holy Ghost works faith in, through and for each and every one of us.   The Holy Ghost through the Gospel of Jesus Christ offers us the blessings of Jesus Christ which is our salvation and making us Holy.  And through the Work of the Holy Spirit, the Father Who created us in our mother’s womb, the Son Who redeems us by His death on the cross, daily reminds us of God’s divine presence in each of our lives.
Clearly, God, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit take an active part in each of our lives today, but Satan wants us to doubt not only God’s presence, but also that God cares for us.  In this way, Satan just as in the Garden of Eden wants to woo us away from God and doubt God.  But hear clearly, Satan is wrong.  God is not far away, God is here in our midst.  This morning we heard His Word of Forgiveness when we confessed our sins.  We heard the Gospel message that Jesus told Nicodemus and us today in the promise “16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.  In a few minutes we will have the opportunity to confess clearly and truly about God, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit in the Athanasian Creed.  And finally around the altar we will receive Jesus Christ precious Body and Blood that gives us eternal life.  May all of us saints gathered here this morning having heard the Words of Forgiveness and Salvation of the Gospel message and tasted the foretaste of the feast to come be emboldened to Confess clearly our belief of ‘Trinity in Unity and Unity in Trinity’ for all of the saints, especially all of us saints gathered here at Emmanuel this morning.  AMEN.
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