Return to the Ancient Paths – Part 2 | Jeremiah 6:16

Return to the Ancient Paths – Part 2 | Jeremiah 6:16

Returning to the Ancient Paths Part 2

Before we begin today’s sermon would you join me in praying the words our Lord taught us to pray?

Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 
Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done
in earth, as it is in heaven. 
Give us this day our daily bread. 
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: Amen

Please Stand for the Reading of God’s Word

Jeremiah 6:16 ESV  Thus says the LORD: “Stand by the roads, and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’

Deuteronomy 32:7 ESV  Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations; ask your father, and he will show you, your elders, and they will tell you.

  • Today we continue our series on returning to the ancient paths…
    • Now I wouldn’t blame you thinking “Hey pastor Christian, shouldn’t you be preaching about the derecho and the destruction…?”
      • But I want you to know that one of the main reasons we want to return to the ancient paths… one of the main reasons we want to install ancient liturgy back in our church is EXACTLY for times like this.
      • So at the very least, when there is no power, and your rough is collapsing in, and your tired and maybe even frightened…
      • That at the very least you might be able to pray “Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name”.
      • That these Biblical prayers and traditions might be so ingrained in you that you need not struggle to remember a verse, or a prayer… but that your instinct would be to lean on those you know and pray and recite.
        • Not vain repetition, but Holy repetition.
      • In fact, next week I will be preaching a full sermon in length about this very subject… how liturgy actually protects the faith… but this week I want to preach a little more about the ancient paths and Jesus our Savior and Lord…

Bring Up Title Slide

PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY PRAY

When we Remember the Ancient Paths we Gain a Richer Understanding of the Gospel.

John 5:46-47 ESV  For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote of me.  (47)  But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words?”

  • Jesus, here in John, makes a very powerful statement regarding the ancient paths…
    • Because I think we can all agree that Moses ways are now ancient paths.
  • So Jesus says “Look at the ancient paths, the ancient ways… if you would have believed them… if you would have believed in the ways and the words of Moses, then you would believe me! If you would have been true to the words and the law that Moses passed down, then you would believe me!
    • Why, because the ancient paths lead to Christ!
    • But what does that mean today? We have found Christ, why do we need to study the ancient paths?
      • Because understanding, following, and walking in the ancient paths will give us a richer understanding of the gospel… a richer understanding of the Christ… a richer understanding of our faith.
  • Because the fact is, Jesus didn’t just pop out of no where and say “You have all got it wrong, but I am here to fix it”.
    • In fact Jesus is talked about all the way back in Genesis, Numbers, and even Dueteronomy.

Genesis 49:10 ESV  The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until tribute comes to him; and to him shall be the obedience of the peoples.

Numbers 24:17 ESV  I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near: a star shall come out of Jacob, and a scepter shall rise out of Israel; it shall crush the forehead of Moab and break down all the sons of Sheth.

Deuteronomy 18:15-18 ESV “The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brothers—it is to him you shall listen—  (16)  just as you desired of the LORD your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly, when you said, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God or see this great fire any more, lest I die.’  (17)  And the LORD said to me, ‘They are right in what they have spoken.  (18)  I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brothers. And I will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him.

  • These three verses are still believed in Jewish circles to be talking about the Messiah… all three verses from Moses… What do we learn from these?
    • The scepter will not depart from Judah, so we know the Messiah will be a king in the line of the tribe of Judah.
    • That King will crush Satan and God’s enemy under His heel.
    • That King will only speak the words that God tells Him to speak, He will be a prophet, like Moses.
      • So Jesus says “If you would have believed what Moses wrote, you would believe in me”.
      • Then my next question is “Do we believe what Moses wrote? Because for us to believe it we need to read it”.
      • These verses add depth and understanding and background to who our Jesus is…
      • But what good are they to us if we don’t know who Judah is, or why his tribe is important… if we don’t know who Moab is or who Seth is….
      • If we don’t know who Moses is, and if we have never studied the way in which He talks to God then how will we understand how Christ talks to God when scripture likens Christs verbal relationship with the father to that of Moses?
  • Watch this guys, how many of y’all have never been to a traditional Jewish Passover meal?
    • Show of hands…
    • Now of those who raised their hands, how many of y’all HAVE taken communion before?
      • Have you ever thought “Why do we take communion?”
      • Why did Jesus say His body was bread and His blood was wine?
      • BECAUSE THE TRUTH IS CHRIST DIDN’T
      • Jesus didn’t say “My body is a random piece of French bread and my blood is generic brand grape juice that you should drink from a teeny tiny little cup”.
      • No, Jesus, when He instituted communion… we He commanded us to take communion in remembrance of Him… Jesus was at a liturgical meal, a PASSOVER SEDAR.
      • And there are parts of that Passover seder that nobody understood even though they did it for thousands of years…
      • But they would do it in a very specific way because they were very strict in their liturgy…
        • Then comes Jesus and looks at their liturgical practices… and He says “I know you have been breaking this piece of bread that is considered sinless, perfect, stripped and pierced… I know you have been breaking this peace of bread that is part of a 3 part unity… you break the bread, hide it away for some time, then restore it…
        • I know you have been doing this and YOU DON’T KNOW WHY.
        • LET ME TELL YOU WHY: THIS IS MY BODY.
      • Jesus didn’t look at a random piece of French bread, no, He took a very specific piece of unleavened bread, the Afikomen, and He said “THIS IS MY BODY BROKEN FOR YOU”
      • And if you don’t know what the Afikomen is or the spiritual significance of it is, then the meaning of that part of communion is lost!
      • And it wasn’t Hyvee brand grape juice Jesus passed around saying “This is my blood” but it was a cup of wine, and not just any cup of wine, but the cup after dinner, and this cup had a very specific historical significance…
      • It was the cup of REDEMPTION.
      • But if you don’t know about the cups of the Sedar and their specific blessings then the meaning of this part of communion is lost.
    • So we have a bunch of Christians walking around taking communion because JESUS said to or something… so we are going to eat this stale cracker and read a verse that kind of makes sense and then drink this juice and pray a prayer that kind of sort of relates to juice or something about blood… then we call it communion and feel good about ourselves…
    • And praise God that the practice of communion has survived, but shame on us, the church that Passover did not.
  • You want to know why Passover didn’t survive? It survived for the first 250 years after Christ… Christian’s celebrated it every year, but then something happened. Well, not something, but someone… and his name was Constantine.
    • Constintine was a Roman Emperor in the late 200’s and early 300’s. He converted to Christianity and did his best to force everyone to be Christians… He also HATED THE JEWS and made it clear that he believed that following any Jewish Custom was not appropriate for a Christian…

“It was, in the first place, declared improper to follow the custom of the Jews in the celebration of this holy festival [Passover], because, their hands having been stained with crime, the minds of these wretched men are necessarily blinded. … Let us, then, have nothing in common with the Jews, who are our adversaries. … Let us … studiously avoiding all contact with that evil way. … For how can they entertain right views on any point who, after having compassed the death of the Lord, being out of their minds, are guided not by sound reason, but by an unrestrained passion, wherever their innate madness carries them. … lest your pure minds should appear to share in the customs of a people so utterly depraved. … Therefore, this irregularity must be corrected, in order that we may no more have any thing in common with those parricides and the murderers of our Lord. … no single point in common with the perjury of the Jews.” -Constantine the Great, AD 325

  • MURDERS OF OUR LORD?! Better check your history book there Constantine, it was the ROMANS who murdered Jesus… SOME Jews demanded it, but it was the Romans who carried out the crime!
    • Constantine wrote this letter to thousands of priests and bishops, thus ended Passover for the majority of Christians forever.
    • Why? Because Constantine saw Passover as Jewish and he HATED the JEWS!
      • NEWS FLASH! JESUS WAS A JEW! HE CAME TO SAVE THE JEWS! HE CAME TO MAKE US JEWISH BY GRAFTING US INTO THE VINE.

Ephesians 2:11-13  Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands—  (12)  remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.  (13)  But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

Ephesians 2:19  So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God,

Ephesians 3:6  This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.

Romans 11:17  But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree,

  • What does all of this mean? It mean’s WE ARE JEWISH!

Galatians 3:29  And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.

  • That means if you belong to Christ then YOU ARE JEWISH!!!!!!!! If you are anti-semitc… that means if you hate Jews… then you are anti Christian! If you hate Jews then you hate Christ and those who belong to Him.
    • But not only that but as a Christian our heritage is their heritage. Their traditions are OUR TRADITIONS! THEIR FEASTS ARE OUR FEASTS.
  • Do you know why the feasts exist? To teach us about God and the Messiah! They are there to teach us and our children!
    • The Feast of Passover teaches us that God will Passover sin for anyone marked by the blood of the lamb. Christ is the Passover lamb.
    • The Feast of Trumpets is celebrated by Jews every year, they believe the Messiah will come at the blast of the final trumpet. The Bible says that Christ will come at the final trump!
    • The Feast of Atonement teaches us that forgiveness of sin comes only by repentance and the shedding of blood. Jesus teaches us that His blood atones if we would repent and turn to Him.
    • The Feast of Tabernacles teaches us that God want’s to be with us. Jesus is called Emanual, God with us.
  • If we still celebrated these feasts today, as I fully believe God intends, then we would all know exactly what Emanual means to the world, we would know what Atonement is and how to achieve it, we would blow the trumpet every year faithfully expecting Christ to return, and we would understand COMMUNION.
    • And not just us, but our kids would understand these things and so much more because these feasts are designed to teach children.
  • Therefore at CLC we celebrate Passover every year, the same way Jews have been doing it for thousands of years.
    • And I am sorry that we didn’t do it this year, that was my failure in the Corvid lock down, it wont happen again!
    • And please don’t start calling this legalism.
      • It’s not legalist to celebrate Christmas every year is it?
      • What about Easter?
      • WHAT IF WE TOOK PASSOVER AND CELEBRATED IT WITH THE JOY AND PASSION OF CHRISTMAS?! Not as a burden but as a celebration!
        • I tell you what we are going to be stepping up our Passover game from now on! And once we get good at that, expect more feasts to come into the picture! For the joy and the fullness of Christ!
  • Because all of these feasts and all of these traditions and all of these ancient paths enrich our understand of Jesus! And the give us a fuller understanding of the Gospel!
  • Now I want to close with one more example from scripture

Acts 17:10-11 ESV  The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue.  (11)  Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.

  • Paul was a church planter… and I know a thing or two about church planting. You know how Paul found a pastor in a city with no Christians?
    • He went to the Synagogue, preached the Gospel, got a Rabi saved, and BOOM instant pastor.
    • Why, because the Rabi already understands the fullness of the Gospel, all he is missing is the Cornerstone, the thing that holds it all together, and when the rabi realizes the cornerstone is Christ then he is fully ready to preach and teach.
    • They didn’t need the New Testament, it wasn’t written yet, but they didn’t need it, why?
      • Because every theological teaching in the New Testament can be found in the Old Testament, there really is nothing theologically new.
      • Christ didn’t change anything, because God doesn’t change. Christ simply COMPLETED things, He is the stone that holds it all together!

Conclusion

  • So what’s our take away?
    • Well, our take away is that we have been doing church wrong… for thousands of years.
      • That’s not to say that we have not been glorifying Christ, serving Him, honoring the gospel and the great commission…
      • But it is to say that we have not been complete in our traditions, and in doing so we have cut ourselves short and frankly many of us have stayed babies in the faith.
    • We are going to talk next week, in our final part of this series, about how these ancient paths and liturgical prayers actually protect the faith. But for now, know that things are going to get so much sweeter and richer in our walk with Christ, amen?! AMEN!
  • Gospel Call


יאר יהוה פניו אליך ויחנך
ישא יהוה פניו אליך וישם לך שׁלום

“May the LORD bless you and keep you;
May the LORD shine his face upon you and be gracious to you;
May the LORD lift up his face upon you and give you his peace.”

You are dismissed from this place but not from His Presence

ye·va·re’·khe·kha’ · Adonai · ve·yeesh’·me·re’·kha

ya·eir · Adonai · pa·nav · e·ley’·kha · vee·khoon·ne’·kah

ees·sa · Adonai · pa·nav · e·ley’·kha · ve·ya·seim · le·kha · sha·lom


“May the LORD bless you and keep you;
May the LORD shine his face upon you and be gracious to you;
May the LORD lift up his face upon you and give you his peace.”

You are dismissed from this place but not from His Presence

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