Happenings

Sermons by Pastor Walter Snyder plus announcements, articles, videos, and anything else that doesn’t fit Ask the Pastor or the Luther Library.





05 January 2014

Sermon: Christmas 2A (OT)

5 January AD 2014
The Second Sunday after Christmas

Title: A Heart That Hears (MP3 Audio)

A Hearing Heart Summary: When God asked him what gift he desired, Solomon asked literally for “a hearing heart.” He desired that his entire being pay attention to the will of the Lord and the needs of the people.

If our own hearts “heard” in such fashion, we would move quickly to obey God and care for other people. Frequently, however, our spiritual ears are deaf — all too often because we plug them ourselves to avoid hearing what the Lord would ask of us.

Thank God that He sent His Son to hear and obey on our behalf. He listened well and fully followed the Father’s commands. He also paid attention to the needs of those around Him and cared for the physical, mental, and spiritual needs of Jews, Samaritans, Romans, and others.

Although Jesus paid full attention to His Father’s will, the Father saw fit to punish Him for our failure to do the same. In Baptism, we benefit from His death, receiving forgiveness for our own unhearing hearts. Christ also sends His Holy Spirit to open our hearts to the Lord and to man, keeping us in faith toward God and fervent love toward one another.

Text: And the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, for that was the great high place. Solomon used to offer a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night, and God said, “Ask what I shall give you.”

And Solomon said, “You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant David my father, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart toward you. And you have kept for him this great and steadfast love and have given him a son to sit on his throne this day.

Solomon's Dream “And now, O Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of David my father, although I am but a little child. I do not know how to go out or come in. And your servant is in the midst of your people whom you have chosen, a great people, too many to be numbered or counted for multitude.

“Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?”

It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. And God said to him, “Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, behold, I now do according to your word. Behold, I give you a wise and discerning mind, so that none like you has been before you and none like you shall arise after you.

“I give you also what you have not asked, both riches and honor, so that no other king shall compare with you, all your days. And if you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.”

And Solomon awoke, and behold, it was a dream. Then he came to Jerusalem and stood before the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and offered up burnt offerings and peace offerings, and made a feast for all his servants. 1 Kings 3:4-15

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Audio: Click to hear the MP3 of A Heart That Hears.

NB: For some reason, a few people have had problems trying to play the inline audio if Windows Media is their default MP3 player. If this occurs, you can either change to QuickTime or another default browser player, copy and paste the link directly into a selected player, or download it to your computer, where it seems to work regardless of which player. Several folks have suggested VLC Player from VideoLAN.

Other Readings: Psalm 119:97-104; Ephesians 1:3-14; Luke 2:40-52

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