by Christopher Harbin

This content is part of a series.

NOTE: This sermon is part 49 and 50 of a 50 part devotional series. Two sermons outlines are included in this download.


Forty-Ninth Day (49 of 50)
Series: Easter Devotion
Christopher Harbin
I Peter 4:16-19

‘‘Don’t be ashamed to suffer for being a Christian. Praise God that you belong to him. God has already begun judging his own people. And if his judgment begins with us, imagine how terrible it will be for those who refuse to obey his message. The Scriptures say, ‘If good people barely escape, what will happen to sinners and to others who don’t respect God?’ If you suffer for obeying God, you must have complete faith in your faithful Creator and keep on doing right.’’ 1 Peter 4:16-19

This passage seems a reversal on our popular notions of and angry God in the Old Testament and a loving God in the New. Certainly, Peter comes from a background that would tend to emphasize God’s judgment more than we see in the words and deeds of Jesus Christ. At work here is also the idea common in Judaism of the day that everything that happened for our good or ill was tied closely with God’s operant will. While that is also a common thread in the increasingly popular versions of a Calvinistic theology, there is more going on here than such an interpretation would adequately explain.


Fiftieth Day (50 of 50)
Series: Easter Devotion
Christopher Harbin
Zechariah 8:18-19

‘‘Yahweh All Powerful told me to say: ‘People of Judah, I, Yahweh, demand that whenever you go without food as a way of worshipping me, it should become a time of celebration. No matter if it’s the fourth month, the fifth month, the seventh month, or the tenth month, you should have a joyful festival. So love truth and live at peace.’’’ Zechariah 8:18-19

So much for a somber, depressed service as pleasing to God! Worship is to be a celebration of joy an interaction. This joy is not simply an option in Zechariah’s witness, but a direct command of Yahweh that our worship spill over from an attitude of rejoicing in God’s love.

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