Good News of Great Joy


In those days  a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered.  This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria.  And all went to be registered, each to his own town.  And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to  the city of David, which is called  Bethlehem,  because he was of the house and lineage of David,  to be registered with Mary, his betrothed,  who was with child.  And  while they were there, the time came for her to give birth.  And she gave birth to her firstborn son and  wrapped him in swaddling cloths and  laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and  the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. For a unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.  And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.”  And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child.  And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

Earworm Wednesday: Handel’s Messiah ~ King’s College Cambridge Choir


Based upon a libretto composed by Charles Jennens which using passages from the Old Testament and Revelation the libretto dealt with prophecy of Christ’s coming, his birth, death, resurrection and victory over sin and Christ’s second coming Handel made it into an oratorio.  The speed in which he composed this is legendary and in composing the famous Hallelujah Chorus he said that he saw the heavens open and beheld the face of God.  It was first performed on Easter, since then it has been a Christmas favorite although mainly the highlights of the oratorio not the entire work.

This is the King’s College Cambridge Choir doing this classical work.

Catechism


Q. 75 How does baptism remind you and assure you that Christ’s one sacrifice on the cross is for you personally?

A.  In this way: Christ instituted this outward washing and with it gave the promise that, as surely as water washes away the dirt from the body, so certainly his blood and his Spirit wash away my soul’s impurity, in other words, all my sins.

Acts 2:38

Matt. 3:11; Rom. 6:3-10; 1 Pet. 3:21

Q. 76 What does it mean to be washed with Christ’s blood and Spirit?

A.  To be washed with Christ’s blood means that God, by grace, has forgiven my sins because of Christ’s blood poured out for me in his sacrifice on the cross. To be washed with Christ’s Spirit means that the Holy Spirit has renewed me and set me apart to be a member of Christ so that more and more I become dead to sin and increasingly live a holy and blameless life.

Zech. 13:1; Eph. 1:7-8; Heb. 12:24; 1 Pet. 1:2; Rev. 1:5

Ezek. 36:25-27; John 3:5-8; Rom. 6:4; 1 Cor. 6:11; Col. 2:11-12

Q. 77 Where does Christ promise that we are washed with his blood and Spirit as surely as we are washed with the water of baptism?

A.  In the institution of baptism where he says:  “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”  “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”  This promise is repeated when Scripture calls baptism the washing of rebirth3 and the washing away of sins.

1Matt. 28:19

2Mark 16:16

3Tit. 3:5

4Acts 22:16

Frenetic Friday Night


And now coming to you live from the secret cave underneath Superman’s fortress of solitude in the Arctic it is the Frenetic Friday show!  Accept no substitute, void where prohibited by law.

A Charlie Brown’s Winter Holiday.

It seems as we get closer to Christmas the grinchier the secularists become.  Case in point:  In Johnson County, Kentucky the school district has censored a stage production of a Charlie Brown’s Christmas.  Seems the portion where Linus steps out on the stage and quotes the second chapter of Luke is verboten.  In other schools in the district they were told to remove any “religious” content from their Christmas productions.  Silent Night became Whip/Nae Nae.  But I have a question, what will they have Charlie Brown say at that critical juncture?  Will it be “Can anyone tell me the true meaning of Winter Holiday?”<source>

Going from Kentucky to the land of Israel.  Archaeologists have found a 1500 year old marble slab that has Hebrew on it saying “Remembered for good” where the slab was found is the city of Kursi, where they believe the Gadarene demoniac was healed by having the demons cast from him into swine.  A church was built on the site around 500 A.D. but destroyed in 614 A.D. by the Persians and lost until 1970’s.   Because Christians tended to build churches where important events in the life of Christ occurred the church found there is another indication that it is where the miracle occurred.   <source>

Now on to England where a hospitalized convert to Christianity illustrates what it means to count the cost.

Nissar Hussain a convert from Islam to Christianity was beaten by his Muslim neighbors because they consider him an apostate, but this is just one incident in fifteen years of being persecuted for his faith.

n the UK, three weeks ago, Nissar was beaten to within an inch of his life by Muslim neighbours to revile him as an apostate and a blasphemer. “They split my kneecap,” he told Breitbart London. “The doctor told me that’s the hardest bone in your body, it takes a lot of force to break it. But when they were beating me I kept my arms around my head and kept moving. One blow like that to my head and I would have been a gonner.”

“I never thought in my wildest imagination this would happen” he said. “When I first converted I knew I knew I’d be shunned. I’d get a few name calls, maybe angry reactions through confrontation here and there, but I never thought it would come to this – years of physical, verbal, criminal abuse and then suddenly almost my life being snuffed out. All because of their taking offense to me being a convert.”

Read more of his inspiring story here:  Hospitalized Christian Convert

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Recognize that?  It is the first amendment of the United States Constitution.  Now watch this:

Think about that.  Makes you wonder how many other rights they would petition away.

Men every so often we are confronted by the need to do something special for our special someone on the holidays.  Being men sometimes we need some instructions to get it right so with that in mind here is a PSA from the Art of Manliness.

Grab those hammers!

And that is it for Frenetic Friday Night!  There will not be a Frenetic Friday Night next week because it is Christmas.

Good night!