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Sermon Devotional Guide - Jan 3

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Devotional guide to my sermon of January 3

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Sermon Devotional Guide - Jan 3

  1. 1. Sermon Texts For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. Now the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. 2 Cor. 5.1-5 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied. 1 Cor. 15:12-19 Reflection Questions 1. What do you think Paul meant by the phrase, “if there is no resurrection of the dead we are, of all people, most to be pitied”? 2. Paul writes that we—in our present condition—groan, longing for hope, justice, healing, and freedom from sin. Do you feel that way? Have there been times when you felt that way more than others? Why? 3. How does Jesus’ resurrection relate to the forgiveness of sins? 4. The resurrection—an actual coming back to life of a person who had died—is central to the message and to the hope of the Christian faith. If the resurrection is a metaphor, do you think it changes the meaning and content of the Christian faith? 5. What is the source of your beliefs about God? Where do you look to learn who God is? Your own experience? The Bible? Have you considered studying the Apostles’ Creed or one of the Confessions? Prayer Gracious God, We thank you for your Word, which is a treasure of wisdom for us. Help us to daily meet you in its pages to the end that by the ministry of your Holy Spirit we may become increasingly like Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen

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