Do Future Mission Work Now

Based on:  Deuteronomy 6:1-9

One of my seminary professors was talking about family devotions with a group of people.  He showed them a picture of a family from the late 1800’s.  The mother had died and the picture showed the father with his seven or eight children.  I don’t remember all the details, but I do remember the very compelling main point.  This man had plenty to do to raise his children, but he consistently took time for devotions with his family and taught them the truths of God’s Word.  The value this man placed on God’s Word showed throughout his life and his example made a huge impact on his children.  Not only his children, but also on his grandchildren and great-grandchildren as his love for God’s Word was passed on from generation to generation.  In fact, you can still see his love for God’s word in many of his descendants, one of whom was my seminary professor.  From this one family has come two Synod presidents, dozens of pastors and teachers, and hundreds of faithful lay men and women.  If you think about the many people that would have heard about Jesus through this one man’s descendants, you could say that he had and still has an impact on thousands of people because he shared his love for the Gospel with his children.

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The Lord Raised Up a Prophet

Based On: Deuteronomy 18:15-20

“Do not be afraid.”  That is one of the first things the angel said to the prophet Daniel when the angel appeared to him.  And when an angel appeared to Mary, the mother of Jesus, and to the shepherds to announce the Savior’s birth, what were the first words those angels spoke?  “Do not be afraid.”  Why do the angels need to tell people not to be afraid?  If the angels were the cute and sometimes baby like little creatures as often depicted, would they really need to say, “Do not be afraid”?  No, probably not.  Those visited by angels knew these creatures were powerful and holy.  A visit from an angel would certainly be cause us to be afraid, but to stand in the presence of the almighty God would be even more terrifying.  Not just because he is powerful, but because he is also holy.  God knows his appearance in glory would literally scare us to death and therefore instead of coming to us in his glory or sending an angel, the Lord raised up a Prophet from among us to speak his words to us.

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Immersed in God’s Word

Based on: Deuteronomy 11:18-21,26-28

“No, you may not just eat dessert.  You have to eat real food too.”  “Get your homework done, then you can go play.”  “Yes, you have to wear a coat.  It’s cold outside.”  Do you remember your parents ever saying things like these?  Or how about this one, “Don’t run while you are holding those scissors.”  Our parents gave commands for us to follow.  Perhaps we didn’t understand why at the time but usually, as adults, we see the wisdom of their words.

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Teach It To the Children

Based on: Deuteronomy 11:1-7,16-21

Today we will install two teachers into our Lutheran Elementary School.  You know, the Bible really doesn’t say anything specific about running an elementary school, but God does command the entire church in the Great Commission to make disciples of all nations by baptizing and also teaching.  This church agrees that it has the responsibility to teach children.  Whenever we baptize a child in a worship service the congregation is asked if it will carry out this responsibility to teach the child that was just baptized, and the congregation responds with, "Yes, as God gives me strength."

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The Lord Raised Up a Prophet

Based on: Deuteronomy 18:15-20

“Do not be afraid.” That is one of the first things the angel said to the prophet Daniel when the angel appeared to him. And when an angel appeared to Mary, the mother of Jesus, and to the shepherds to announce the Savior’s birth, what were the first words those angels spoke? “Do not be afraid.” Why do the angels need to tell people not to be afraid? If the angels were the cute and sometimes baby like little creatures as often depicted, would they really need to say, “Do not be afraid”? No, probably not. Those visited by angels knew these creatures were powerful and holy. Daniel describes the angel that visited him as having a face like lightning, eyes like flaming torches, and a voice like the sound of a multitude. It is no wonder the angel had to tell Daniel, “Do not be afraid.” A visit from an angel would certainly cause us to be afraid, but to stand in the presence of the almighty God would be even more terrifying. God knows this and therefore instead of coming to us in his glory or sending an angel, the Lord raised up a Prophet from among us to speak his words to us.

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