1. Belief in Jesus is no longer a given. Today, we need to make a case. Today, we must give an account.
  2. God’s Spirit, the Paraclete, works through the promises spoken by God’s people. Through those promises, He leads people to look for the Lord’s salvation.
  3. But miraculous as was Mary's faith and as extraordinary as was the manner of His conception, it is the identity and work of the boy which makes Him so significant, especially for your hearers.
  4. This Sunday offers you the opportunity to speak a word which exposes, enlightens, and ultimately enlivens your hearers as they prepare to celebrate Christmas.
  5. Mark reminds us in this text that John was a redirection specialist. Come to think of it, so are you.
  6. As we do our part in the mission of our Master, we join with all believers to keep a constant and uninterrupted vigil until the great day of His return.
  7. With their minds set on God’s grace in Christ for them and for all, your congregation will leave church this week prepared to be unfairly gracious toward everyone they encounter.
  8. Forgiveness is hard, especially when we have been deeply hurt and badly wounded, but this should drive us back even more to our gracious and forgiving Father.
  9. "Greatest" according to the mind of God does not come from accomplishment or advancement or accolade. To be the greatest is to become the least.
  10. Comfort, ease, pleasure, happiness, these are worth pursuing, say the preachers of this world. Suffering is not. Do whatever you must to avoid it. In Christ, however, we see suffering differently.
  11. This self-effacing God delights in showering His favor upon those of low estate. He lifts up the humble, reaches out to the downtrodden, welcomes the outcast, and befriends the foreigner.
  12. In many cases, the expectations are not realistic. Sometimes we expect things to be much better than they could possibly be. On the other hand, sometimes our expectations are far too low.

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