March 13th, 2016
How often have you wanted a reset button, to be free of all the guilt binding you? Those who hear God’s word can be set free! In Isaiah 61, we read of the year of Jubilee, a period in which all debts were cancelled and those who have been defeated by the circumstances of life could be given a fresh start. We hear these words again in Luke, where Jesus proclaims to be the ultimate fulfillment of this promise, to free those bound by sin. In listening to God, we receive this freedom, unsurpassable peace, and an eternal crown replacing all mourning.
Isaiah 61:1-3 (ESV) – “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring the good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to grant those who mourn in Zion – to give them a beautiful vengeance of instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.”
Luke 4:21 (ESV) – “And he began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”
Philipians 4:7 (ESV) – “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Listen to hear more from Pastor Dan and come visit our church on Sunday’s at 10 AM in the Long Branch neighbourhood!
the first three versus the spirit of the sovereign Lord is on me because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim the good news to the poor he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted how many how many brokenhearted do you know in your life people that have broken hearts people that have gone through things that have just absolutely absolutely shattered their their their hearts their minds their will has broken things that that they are struggling with and so and then he says to proclaim freedom to the captives and released from darkness for the prisoners to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God to comfort all who mourn and provide for those who grieve in Zion to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes a crown of beauty instead of ashes now I need to tell you a story and please don’t judge me or us as parents but you know kids do things that you can’t protect son and predict something sometimes and you have your own stories but this week I was at the office and Nancy sends me a picture and I shared that with some of you she sends me a picture of our couch which was like we got it used and stuff and was already beat up but now it’s got this this iron imprint on it okay and so she kgg she bought me iron for my office just in case I need to look better you know and so and so she went downstairs to laundry and Tim our three year old decided to test out the iron okay so he comes down and he says oh mama I have a boo-boo and so he burned his finger first of all it wasn’t crying he’s a tough little boy wasn’t crying but then Nancy comes back it comes back up and she smells something in the you know in the kitchen area and stuff and so she she goes and she looks at the couch and the iron is on the couch so he took the iron and he plugged it in okay and then he put it on the couch and and then she sends me another picture of him you know just really sad you know crying he’s holding his finger but so here’s the thing I as a parent can tell him that and he knows it’s no good but unless he actually follows through and he does it then then there is a result but there’s another result when he doesn’t listen it’s it’s it’s a it’s a result that I do not desire and often in our lives you know we we hear the word of God but we don’t do it and there was this lady Dorothy L Sayers and in her play she that was named the men born to be king she warns against this you know treating of God’s Word and of God’s drama everything that has been going on as a simply and ordinary you know bed size story and so she warns people’s like don’t treat this as something that your parents or maybe you read just before going to bed don’t read this as just a story a tale or or something and let it live in you and when it lives in you it has a completely different it it gives a completely different result different fruits and so I think that no one is listening to her well no and a few are listening to her a lot of people are thinking of Christianity of the Christian story as just another tale just something you know and I think the world today is tolerating us preaching the gospel they’re just tolerating it and I don’t know if you haven’t have had a conversation with someone who is a very heated and you know talker you have an argument with them and they don’t hear your argument when they pause they pause in the conversation just to come up with another point to hit you with okay and I don’t know if you know people like that but sometimes when when things are heated people talk talk talk talk and then the only time they stop is to think of something else and then when you talk they don’t listen they they don’t hear what you have to say they’re coming up with something new to hit you with and I think that today the world is just like that they they they tolerate simply when they are not overwhelming us or the church or Christians in this church in in this in this world with with their own ideas when they are quiet they just kind of it seems that they’re just kind of waiting to hit you with with another thing and so the hope of the world hinges on a few people that would really listen to this divine message that we just read a few has to have to listen and so when you listen to God when you listen and you obey Him when you listen to God you have freedom how many of you need freedom in your life just just three very simple words today I’m gonna give you and first of all is first of them is freedom we need freedom in our lives there is people in this world your friends people that you know that are bound and are brokenhearted are sort of prisoners to the things that they do prisoners to this Dark Prince and they need to be freed and so it says the spirit of the law of the sovereign Lord is upon me and he has anointed me to preach a certain thing preach good news to the poor he has anointed you he has he has called you to preach and to give good news to the poor to send he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted proclaim freedom to the captives people who hear who hear God’s Word are set free everyone say say set free can you just imagine what our lives and what our society would be when people would be set free there’s so many people that they think they are free but they’re they’re captured they they don’t live their lives in freedom the captured and so the audience that Isaiah is speaking to are of course or is exiled Israel the good tidings are the good news that God is proclaiming to them is that they can return to their homeland of Palestine and that’s in chapter 40 of of Isaiah now the good news amounts to a proclamation of freedom okay the good news was hey freedom is coming you’re gonna be free and till then it was incredible because they were not free they were bound and God’s message today is to buy to bind up the brokenhearted to proclaim freedom to the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor now I don’t think it’s hard to identify ourselves with the captors of of Israel okay we have not walked in their shoes but if the person is not free from from sin and free in Christ that person is captive that person can absolutely identify with with what they were going through and so it returned from captivity is an experience I think needed for every person now the word captives here literally refers to spoils carried away by those that conquer okay there are some things that the devil wants to steal from you it was to take it and he wants to run away with those things and the sad thing is that often we don’t realize that he’s taking stuff from us that he’s robbing us or he’s he’s he’s guiding us he’s taking us by ahead by the hand and he’s leading us to a dark place then then then that we have to be freed from the dark place is that that that prisoners need to be brought out of now the person is not it’s not enslaved by Satan’s devious allurements by or he’s he’s he’s enslaved by selfish pride and by really empty habits and and and empty activities we often devote ourselves to all that stuff that we we go through motions we go through empty things in our lives just that they would make us feel fulfilled right now but then but then in five minutes and in a day or a month they leave us empty again I think those people that that that feel that way they need to escape that kingdom of darkness but they want to do it but they are unable to do it and if only they would they would stop playing with the change then that bind them you know often people are bound with change in their lives with with like I said empty activities empty empty things empty habits and and and they are toying with them they’re playing with those chains only if they would just realize okay this is a chain it’s something that is meant to bind me and and and limit me I need to leave it let’s dive into this the year of the Lord’s favor and it alludes to I the year of Jubilee in Leviticus chapter 25 okay it’s it’s it’s it’s an awesome chapter and and it occurred the year of Jubilee it occurred every 50 years every 49 like fiftieth year was the year of Jubilee or the year of Lord’s favor and if you read this this chapter the twenty-fifth chapter it is it is quite remarkable because it was sort of like remember I said to reset your life it was like a reset button that that every you see every seven years God said don’t work the ground the ground has to rest and so and then seven times seven was 49 years and then on the fiftieth year it was the year of Jubilee and what would happen back then it they would basically they would be freed what it said was you are free debts are canceled if you had debts if you had if you had to sell yourself to slaver because of whatever on the fiftieth year you were free you were able to pick up your stuff and go to back to your family you are able to to go and get your your land back I don’t know exactly how it worked because it could be confusing but that’s what the bio says that’s what God intended but there is realized there’s very little evidence that they were actually following this to the T okay and so the intent was that everything was reset it was like okay the year of Jubilee the year of Lord’s favor everything goes back so if you it was basically a chance for people for people to start their lives all over again very interesting and so if you were in debt that that was cancelled if you were enslaved you were free now so those who had been forced to sell themselves to the as slaves to their creditors because they they had debts to pay now they were set free family property was restored God’s law decree that an Israelite inheritance could be or could remain sold until the next year of Jubilee okay so this was God’s Way of really like I just said periodically granting a new start a fresh start for those defeated by circumstances of life and I think that people are crying out today in this world I need a year of Jubilee I need a year of Lord’s favor I need to reset my life I need to reset things in my life I am defeated I am defeated by the circumstances I just just buy stuff in my life I think sadly enough there is just like I said not much evidence that Israelites were following this into the tea and living by the requirement of the year of Jubilee and so for I think this reason it became sort of a shadow of the of the promise a messianic era in the in this in this year it was like Lord’s favor it was the the Lord’s year now I think every heart desires to be free right you desire you desire to be you want to be free and so you want for all things to be to be right to be to be good and Jesus spoke of this desires of this desire and he stood and he read in the synagogue in Nazareth okaythat’s and he and and Isaiah 61 was selected so if you have your Bibles Luke chapter 4 or if you’re taking notes Luke chapter 4 verse 16 and 2 verse 21 so this is what it says and so he went to Nazareth where he had been brought up and on the Sabbath day he he went into the synagogue as was his custom he stood up and read and this is where he and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him unrolling it he found the place where it was where it is written the Spirit of the Lord is upon me because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor he has sent me to proclaim freedom to the prisoners and recover of recovery of sight to the blind to set the oppressed free to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor then the roll then he rolled up the scroll gave it back to the attendant and sat down the eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him he began by saying to them today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing now imagine Isaiah said it and now Jesus years later is standing in the synagogue and he’s reading this and he’s proclaiming look I am it right I am the freedom I am the freedom and so in that moment he announced himself as the ultimate fulfillment of God’s promise of freedom if a person needs freedom where where can that person find freedom where in Jesus and Jesus there’s free Jesus paid the price and so today we can be a part of this eternal year of Jubilee be a that became possible in Christ and Jesus Christ and became possible in Jesus Christ and so every person now @na at any time when sin binds them they are broken they can be set free they can be set free so just what Sarah said today she said that there was this feeling of you know God sort of made it fresh again the doubts went away and you see this is this is it that you can have freedom in Jesus when you listen to God you can have freedom in Jesus and today I want to encourage you don’t put that aside don’t just put it under the table sweep it up and just say yeah yeah you know pastor then great message and stuff but then I have to leave this place I have to leave I have to go through that door and then and then my life starts not only your life is now don’t think that your life starts later when you leave this church like it’s not that you’re taking a break from your life right now this is your life and so the decisions that you make make them today and let’s live by them if you need to be set free from something believe hold on to it and then Jesus there’s freedom and you say yes or amen look and Jesus there’s freedom all sins can be broken people can be set free secondly and when you listen to God there is peace the Spirit of the Lord is upon me because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted and to proclaim freedom to the captive and release from darkness for the prisoners those who listen to God have peace as well as freedom you have freedom yeah you have peace you have peace and Isiah appeals particularly to the brokenhearted here you know literally the word means that which is shattered broken heart that which is shattered you see a broken arm can be set in place and with time it will what it will heal if you break your leg you go to the emergency they will set it but with time you will be as good as new you can run again takes short time to heal see and when when when when your heart is broken it is totally totally different the heart can be broken for life your character can be broken for life time say you know people say or time heals all wounds well a broken heart is rarely healed by just time often what happens when the heart is broken it it gets even worse I don’t know how it’s impossible but it does when nothing is done about the this broken heart it’s not like it’s going to heal itself when the heart is broken there’s only one person that can heal that heart now what would make what would serve that kind of blow that would break a heart well and here we can have many many answers circumstances can pile up one on top of another until the heart is in despair people just can’t breathe anymore there is anxieties in people’s lives that make the heart empty and to feel a oneself out an outcast people feel like outcasts and to feel that that they are not a part of this inner circle of things can break your heart they’re people that are trying desperately to fit in to be a part of something greater than they are and they try to find it here on this earth but but it’s an in it’s and they should find it but we should know and we should tell that to others that the only way to be completely healed of a broken heart as you allow Jesus to mend that heart you allow Jesus to work on your heart and I read that somewhere there was a preacher who said that when he was a when he was a young man young preacher he worried about what the world thought of him you know later in life he came to the place where he simply didn’t care what the world was thinking about him and then by the end of his life he has discovered that the world was never really thinking of it you know how we go through phases we think they are what what is everyone thinking of me and then you know when we are crushed when when we then we say oh I don’t care what everyone is thinking of me I don’t care what this person if that person is thinking of me we go through phases and then at some point we realize you know all this stuff sometimes we were thinking that people were thinking of us or people were criticizing us or or and then going oh I don’t care what they think well sometimes the case is that no one was actually thinking anything and so we diagnosed a broken heart by looking for this inner peace and so as long as there is a as there is peace in that heart that hot is not utterly broken and so I think that if you’re here and if you need your heart to be mended you look for peace you look for peace that comes only from God that which Rob’s the heart of peace is really often sin in our lives or a guilt that comes from sin you know we are we fall into sin we come out and then that guilt just just comes and knocks on our door and knocks us down and the circumstance after another circumstance and it breaks our heart God’s offered peace is not a ticket to just security away from all the problems okay like you can have God’s peace and you will still be going through different circumstances it’s not that when you have God’s peace you’re not going to be going through difficult circumstances but it is it is it is calling that peace is calling for purpose you see I think it’s it’s it’s it’s a terrible terrible life or or or or it’s a it’s it’s quite a you know a desperate situation when the fear that that that is in our lives the fear that we that we that is there that our life is slipping away without any meaningful purpose that days go by you know okay I’m just gonna look I’m not that old yet but listen all young people listen really I can think like I’m 41 now right so but I can think in my mind I am like I feel like I’m like 18 you know I can still go I can I can still you know and and and it and it and it’s alright it’s good but but listen but then I have this realization that that that I only have now not when I was 18 or 20 life is short time goes by so fast I can’t go back and be 20 again and the faster you understand and and and you begin to you begin to have this revealed to you that you make the most out of the days that you have don’t think that you are invincible don’t think that you are you know 15 20 25 and then you have the whole life ahead of you yes but it goes by like this goes by very fast make the most out of everything if you want to have a purpose maybe you are living and and and you think oh my whole life is ahead of me I I will you know but you don’t have a purpose and you think oh you know I don’t need to think about the purpose now you know when I grow up when I have a job when I have a you know a family when I have when I’m established then I’m gonna think of a purpose no think of your life’s purpose now and when you think of your life’s purpose what is the purpose that that you even here on this on this earth see people and I and I’m go into this because time is running oh I see time is running like I feel like I just started the sermon and now I have to finish it but there’s a there’s a person who wrote and was trying to describe all this like our society and and his name is Paul torn ear and and he depicted our civilization in terms of of something that is just going on and people don’t really understand what’s going on so like like a rebellious child our world is asserting itself in the pure negative form he said we are suddenly against all the past all authority all values without offering anything to replace what we would wreak and he defined a neurosis as an inner conflict that there was a conflict in a person and he was quoting Jung and and this is what he said sorry just bear with me and I want to read you what what read to you what what is it because he is unaware of a neurotic person is a person that does is not aware of his problems and having thrown Christ and the gospel out the back door our world now wonders why is it sick never dreaming what the real problems are and then then he wrote that when God is dethroned fear rules person’s life fear rules and so he attributed much of the emphasis on scientific research to humans desire to escape fear by banishing all mystery so in other words if you knew everything that who though there’ll be no mystery you would have no fear so many people fear the future well because why because they don’t know the future but if we would know the future then we would not fear it and so the scientists so he would say well maybe you know that the scientists would have the the the answer and yet Harold Urey one of the scientists who contributed to the development of the atomic bomb this is what he said I write to make you afraid I myself am a man who is afraid all wise men I know are afraid crazy stuff only the gospel offers peace only Jesus can come and give you peace I all the things here on this earth yes they are helpful I’m not against science I’m not against psychology I’m not in fact God is telling us to use that to our advantage to be wise in it but we can’t look at it as the only answer that there is because even the most genius scientist have fear in their lives and so only the gospel peace and and and uh let let me just say this Philippians 4:7 and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus again where is the answer where is the answer peace and freedom Jesus is the answer trust the Holy Spirit every single day when Jesus left this earth he he said he said I will send you an comforter and the comforter is here is available to you so if you have fear in your life if you have anxiety in your life if you if you are afraid of the future afraid of anything the Bible says look you don’t need to fear you can have peace from God this surpasses all understanding and the last thing when you listen you have a crown and I I just I don’t have time to just go through all of it but then it says to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes a crown of beauty instead of ashes in the promise of a crown is is beautiful beauty instead of ashes crown of beauty instead of ash now to understand the promise I think that one one must remember the customs of mourning among the Israelites ashes were to put on there on the head of a grim as a grim crown people were mourning something by God’s grace I think the ashes shall be replaced by a by this this just just incredible heritage that we have in Jesus Christ whatever you are mourning about whatever is it has happened in your life in the past and whatever is weighing you down now because of Jesus you can be freed of that instead of ashes instead of things that are weighing you down in this in this world in your life God will replace the ashes with a beauty with a crown of beauty that you can walk around you can walk anywhere not with something that is weighing you down but in peace and freedom that only comes from God see when sin comes into our lives it consumes us it consumes our dreams consumes everything and it leaves ashes it’s like a fire it will burn you up the price for sin is always always bigger than you think it was going to be [Music] you think that your strong strength is only like ashes it’s here today but tomorrow it’s not gonna be here you need to put your trust in God acceptable year of the Lord and I think that let me just finish with this there was a story of a an inmate a prisoner who was on on a condemned or a convicted convicted killer that lived on death row and the news reached him that a pardon was being considered and he pled fervently against it he did not want to be pardoned and because of that they had to order some more tests psychiatric tests why would he not write like why would he not want to live and I think that many people in this in this world maybe there’s someone here who is sort of like that person because to to say no to Jesus to say no to salvation it doesn’t make sense it does not make sense he offers freedom he offered strength [Music] you