Sermon for Advent 4 – 12.18.22

+ 4th Sunday in Advent – December 18th, 2022 +

Series A: Isaiah 7:10-17; Romans 1:1-7; Matthew 1:18-25

Beautiful Savior Lutheran

Milton, WA

 

“God With Us”

 

In the Name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

What’s in a name? Shakespeare famously wrote. Names are given to us. Names are part of our identity. Names have meaning. Names have power. You are baptized in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

 

And, as we hear in Matthew 1, names also tell us a story.

 

“Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”

 

All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,  and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). 

 

Did you hear some of the names in Matthew’s gospel? There’s Joseph and Mary. There’s the title, Son of David. And then there are the two most important names in this story, and in the story of Scripture: Jesus. Immanuel.

 

Matthew’s account of Christmas is full of names. And what story do these names tell us? The greatest story of all…the story of God’s saving, gracious love for us in sending Jesus.

 

The name of Joseph takes us back to Genesis, to another man by the name of Joseph. He was betrayed by his brothers. Sold into slavery. Imprisoned. Eventually, the Lord gave him great authority over Egypt, and even his own brothers. And with that that power and authority he served, provided food for the people; he forgave his brothers and showed them mercy. Our Lord did all of this through Joseph in the OT so that one day, when another Joseph came along, this carpenter from Nazareth would also be called upon to serve and provide and care for the Christ Child who would in time serve, provide, and care for all people by his life and death on the cross.

 

The name of Mary, likewise, takes us back to the Old Testament, to Moses’ sister Miriam, who sang beautifully and triumphantly by the shores of the Red Sea: I will sing unto the Lord for he has triumphed gloriously, the horse and his rider he has thrown into the sea. Now in this child in her womb, who is Jesus, God in the flesh; he will accomplish a greater exodus through the grave and out again in his resurrection on the third day. Mary’s son, our Lord, has indeed conquered the Pharaoh of hell, drowned our sin in the Red Sea of our baptism, and rescued us from bondage and slavery to sin.

 

This is what our Lord promised King David, when he declared that there would be a ruler that would come forth from his family whose throne and reign would endure forever. Jesus is not only a son of David, born in his family tree through Mary, and cared for by one of his family tree in Joseph. Jesus is also the Son of David, a royal name that declares Jesus is the long-expected King who comes to rule and reign forever by his birth, life, death, and resurrection for us.

 

 

Jesus’ name tells us exactly who he is and what he came to do. Jesus means YHWH saves. The Lord saves. Who does he save? You. Me. All who believe in his saving name. What does he save us from? Sin, death, condemnation. Even before he is born, the angel tells Joseph, and all who hear these blessed words – the meaning and power and gift of this child he is to name Jesus. Jesus’ name tells us the story – which is the story of all Holy Scripture – the story of God’s grace and mercy come to save you from sin in Jesus.

 

“Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.  She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”

 

This is why Jesus came. For you. To fix what we had broken. To mend what was marred. To find us who were lost. To save us who were perishing. To ensure that ours will be a never-ending story in his saving name. Not only then. But now. Today. For Jesus is also Immanuel, which means God with us.

 

God with us in life and death.

God with us in joy and sorrow.

God with us in calm and strife.

God with us in contentment and anxiety.

God with us in health and sickness.

God with us in trust and in doubt.

God with us in times of peace and pain.

God with us in our laughter and our weeping.

God with us on the cross, in the grave, and in His resurrection in which we are baptized.

God with us in his humble words that transform simple water into a flood of forgiveness.

God with us in his humble words that cause ordinary bread and wine to host a Christmas feast of his body and blood.

 

God with us this Advent, and every day until he comes again…

 

In the Name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beautiful Savior

is a traditional Lutheran Church, faithful to God's Word and His Sacraments. We equip God's people to serve, love, and encourage one another as we grow in our personal relationship with Christ. We reach out to the community as beacons of light, sharing the love of God in Christ Jesus, our Savior.

Church Office Hours

Monday - Thursday 8:30am-3:30pm

Friday 8:30am-11:30am

The office is closed on Fridays during the summer months of June, July, and August.

Preschool Office Hours

August - May
Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday
8:30am-12:30pm

By appointment only June and July

Contact

Address
2306 Milton Way
Milton, WA 98354
Phone
(253) 922-6977
Fax
(253) 922-6977