Sermon for 01/10/20/21, 1st Sunday after Epiphany

Genesis 1:1-5; Psalm 29:1-10; Acts 19:1-7; Mark 1:4-11

In Genesis, the world that we know it is being created. The first verse of the Bible simply presents us with God. The rest is an expansion on the theme of who God is, what He is like, and what He is doing. God has no beginning—–He is eternal; He is without beginning and without ending. He brings about the beginning of all else through His power as Creator. The eternity of God is difficult for the human mind to comprehend since we are so rooted in time and are accustomed to measuring life by the passage o time. Eternity is not simply the unlimited time, forever extending backwards and forwards. Eternity is another dimension and belongs solely to God. Time is a dimension of existence and belongs solely to God. God existed in the dimension of eternity hen He he created time. He was already living when time came into being.

The Spirit of God participated in the creation of the world. The Hebrew word “ruach” may refer to God’s Spirit, the spirit of a person, breath or wind. Scholars are divided about whether the reference says here is to the Spirit of God or that the Spirit was with Him. God created a good world. He did not create part of the world to be intrinsically evil but left evil as a possibility., since He wanted humans to be free to love and serve Him. Such freedom required the possibility of sin and its evil consequences. Evil is whatever or whoever disrupts the goodness of God’s world.

The world at first was formless. The deep (Hebrew – rehom). The chaotic waters were rolling but had no form and appeared to be angry. Still, To was in complete control, hovering just above the waters. In short, the earth was being formed and would be perfect when God was ready, much like us whom He also created.

In Psalm 29 God makes Himself known is a variety of ways. In the psalm His presence leads the people to praise Him. The psalmist saw Him in a powerful thunderstorm, moving from North to South. He called upon mighty angels to credit the lord with glory and strength, described the seven-fold voice of God, thundering over his people. God’s people need to be aware of signs of His glory and strength, and such signs should lift our heart to praise Him.

In the story from Acts, Paul said this upon entering Ephesus, that some interpreters had tried to make these twelve disciples as Ephesus Christians who simply had not yet received the Holy Spirit. This would be hard, as these people had not even heard of the Holy Spirit yet. They had been disciples of John the Baptist, but they had received only John’s baptism. Therefore they knew only what John had told them. Paul told the people to believe in the One coming after John, that is, in Jesus. When they came to belief, they then were baptized in Jesus name. Paul then laid his hands on them, and they became Christians. The Holy Spirit came and gave them power to speak in tongues and prophesy, which means to witness to Jesus, just as the disciples had done at Pentecost, fulfilling the promise of Jesus to the ends of the earth.

In the Scripture of Mark, it opens with a note from Matthew 3:4 17 mentioned that John preached repentance and required evidence of it in order to baptize his converts. Mark used the specific phrase” Baptism of repentance” ‘Repent means to turn around’ “Repent means to ‘turn around’ in both Hebrew (shub) and Greek (metanoeo).’ Thus baptism became for John and for later Christians a sign of turn one’s whole life around and directing it toward faith in God.

Beloved, if you say, “I believe in Jesus, and are baptized, but do not change the way you live your life, have done nothing!” However, if you take instruction of the meaning of baptism, commit yourself to serving Jesus and are baptized in His name, you life will change forever.” You see, if it is only words to you, you haven’t made a commitment, not really. If you say the words and feel the power of Christ coming over you, then you will feel the power of the Holy Spirit coming into you your life will be something meaningful. You will not look at other people the same, you will have compassion for them and a desire to help them, to feed them, to help clothe them and see to it, they have an opportunity to provide for themselves, and they will in return, help others. Our Christ sought the best in others, and we can have the same kind of love. Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

2 thoughts on “Meditation

  1. That definitely sounded like the gauntlet hitting the ground!

    Chris Pearson

    Germer Beaman & Brown
    1 Barton Skyway
    1501 S. Mopac Expy. Suite A400
    Austin, Texas. 78746

    To reach me, reply to this, or —
    512-750-2823 (cell – best bet)
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