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Sunday, February 15, 2015

02152015 Quinquagesima Esto Mihi Sunday

Gospel Audio
Sermon Audio

February 15, 2015
God’s anointed, it is not Who we expect!
Lord of Heaven and Earth, You look not with the eyes of man that You created, but into the very heart of our existence.  Look beyond our outward appearance as You did with David and change our heart to be like David’s, engaged in Your work in Your Kingdom to spread the Gospel.  For Jesus came to seek and save all of mankind no matter how we look nor how we dress.  Thanks be to God for Jesus Christ sacrifice for each and every one of us.  AMEN.
            When doctors first tried to determine how the human body worked, they at times were perplexed and didn’t understand.  What malady was on the outside of the body seemed easy to treat, but sickness inside the body was a different story.  As time passed and the time of the enlightenment began medicine men learned that inside the human body was a vast wilderness of what became known as organs, blood vessels and at the core, the human heart.  Not only did the doctors learn that the human heart pumped the blood throughout the body, they learned that without it man was dead.
            In our Old Testament lesson this morning we hear one of the greatest stories of the bible that tells of God’s choosing a king for the Israelite people.  Previously, Saul the first king of a united Israel had been anointed by Samuel to rule the people who were direct descendants from those who had fled Egypt.  Though Saul was a great king, he like a lot of biblical figures beginning with Adam and Eve eventually sinned and became rejected by God for his disobedience.
            But once Saul was rejected, God was ready to choose a new king who would follow God’s own heart.  The new king was none other than David.  He when chosen was a simple shepherd boy.  David would become famous not only for the being able to defend his sheep from ravenous wild animals, but also his slaying Goliath.  David was chosen specifically by God for three reasons.  God chose David, because God could see into David’s core, his very heart, God knew his loyalties and God trusted him to do what God desired.  Let’s talk about each of these three a little bit more and how they emulated the true  King.
            First, God could see into David’s heart.  Clearly God had the attribute of omniscience, all knowing.  For God was God and all powerful and all knowing.  God clearly knew what would happen in the future with David, but God had chosen David as King, because of the need to have not only the heart of a shepherd who could care for his people, but also the heart of a warrior who would defend them when needed.  As well when the cards were down God was looking for a leader and King for His people Israel to make the decisions needed that brought the greatest glory to God.  And God knew the future and could see David’s heart and knew David was just the right shepherd for what was ahead.

           Second, not only could David shepherd the souls of the people, he could also remain loyal to God.  It was not just a loyalty of the heart, but a loyalty to the plan that God had for His people no matter the cost.  David was clearly the right person.  Not only was David to continue the legacy begun by Saul, but David would usher the Israelite people into a deeper relationship with God.  Clearly the people and leaders had previously had a personal relationship with God, but being so far removed from the Exodus from Egypt, nearly 400 years earlier, and the miracles performed, the relationship that God had with His people would have diminished in their minds and hearts.  And David chosen by God would not only be loyal to God and the plan, but return this heart relationship component with God to and for the people of Israel and their relying upon God and their relationship with Him. 
Third, the relationship between God and David also had a clear and compelling component of trust.  For God did trust David to do His bidding and follow God’s commands.  Saul towards the end of his reign turned away from God and didn’t follow God’s plan and paid the price.  Enter David as leader of the Israelite people.  He would not only lead the people but build trust in the relationship between himself and God as well as rebuild the trusting relationship between the people of Israel and God.  This would then lead to the clear continuing of David’s reign and connection with the promise that was given in the Garden of Eden.
Remember in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve before the fall were God’s chosen first family.  They lacked nothing, experienced a clear, close and comfortable relationship with God the Father.  But after the fall, the entrance of sin into the world, the relationship radically changed, and not for the the better.  No longer was there the trust, no longer was there the clear communication between God and man and no longer was there the loyalty of man to God.  So what was the only recourse for God.  God like a great coach, whether of basketball, baseball or any sport, had to make a change.  God needed a new play, a new more powerful play that would fulfill what He wanted.  God had to send in a substitute, come up with a new plan.
God with the entrance of sin put into motion the ultimate plan of salvation.  And this plan like a thread that weaves through the garment of life, clearly intersected David.  David not only was King of Israel, but he was the ancestor to none other than Jesus Christ.
Through King David, the compassion of God came clearly upon the people of Israel and the link firmly established in the Word of God connects David to Jesus Christ.  Jesus Christ was David’s heir.  Jesus came not just as a prophet, but priest and like His ancestor, the true King.  But Jesus was not just King of the people of Israel, Jesus Christ was and is the King of all Creation including all of us.  As God’s Son, Who sits at the right hand of God the Father, Jesus Christ not only exhibited the characteristics of King David, but clearly followed God’s heart, was trusted by God and had the most intimate relationship with God the Father.  And we who gather here today are connected to God through our baptism into this relationship between God the Father and God the Son.
As we come and receive not a representation, but the actual true Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, we receive the gift of forgiveness offered for all of mankind.  In, with and through our receipt of Jesus gift of grace for us, God plants into each of our hearts, souls and spirits the same potential of relationship with Him, through Jesus Christ.  For when we come and as the hymn says, “Eat His Body and drink His Blood” we celebrate not just the gift of forgiveness for us, but the offer of grace freely offered for all of mankind.

It is in this meal we receive God’s Son, sent down from heaven as the Word made Flesh Who dwelt among us.  We receive forgiveness of sin, life and salvation from God through Holy Communion.  This is God’s gift for us and the fulfillment of the plan of salvation.  The plan begun in the Garden of Eden, clearly continued through Saul and with David’s being anointed King and His descendent Jesus Christ death on Calvary for all of mankind, including each and everyone of us gathered here at Emmanuel this morning.  AMEN.

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