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2013-12-22 Watsonville

by Tim Isbell

The Watsonville Church of the Nazarene invited me to preach in its 2 services on Sunday just before Christmas. So I used the I used Revised Common Lectionary gospel reading (Matthew) for the 4th Sunday of Advent, and it provided a good basis to preach about the Incarnation of Jesus in the first century. This concept of God coming into his creation in order to be present with his people is one of the really Big Ideas of Christian Faith. The complete sermon notes for this sermon are at The Incarnation (God Among Us)

As I understand Christian faith, there are essentially 10 Big Ideas. This sermon addresses one of them. To see the other 9 ideas click on The 10 Big Ideas of Christian Faith. There you will find links to the preaching notes for all 10 Big Idea sermons. If you are in investigator of Christian faith, this is a fast way to grasp the essential concepts of Christian faith. If you are a long-time Christian but have difficulty "seeing the forest for the trees," then reading this material will help you a grow in your faith. And when you find yourself in spiritual conversations with investigators, a grasp of the Big Ideas really helps.

As part of the message I mentioned a way of reading only 1/3 of the Bible and getting the whole story line. I've labeled it the Story Line Method; you'll find it as the second option in Bible Reading Strategies

Especially in the second worship, I talked a little about the lectionary. For more on this click on Lectionary BasicsThe third option covered in Bible Reading Strategies is the Lectionary Method.

In several of these Big Ideas you'll notice that I mention the term Alternate Life. This is a concept I later developed much further. For more about this concept click on The Alternate Life Collection.

Finally, a word about the picture at the top-right of this webpage: it's is a part of one of the stained glass windows at the Second Baptist Church of Toledo, Ohio. This is the church Robin (my wife) grew up in.

Thanks for inviting me to preach in your church. May God bless you in this transition time.