by Bob Wickizer

The Messenger
Bob Wickizer
2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16; Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26; Romans 16:25-27; Luke 1:26-38
Advent 4

At 7:45 this morning I gave a sermon that changed my life - or rather, an angel in the congregation this morning delivered a message to me that enabled me to change my life.

To tell you the story I must give you a summary of the original sermon that arose from speculation that God delegated the task of which human being would have the honor of bearing the Christ Child and that task fell upon the angel Gabriel. So the sermon was cast in a modern 21st century period with Gabriel on a kind of scouting trip visiting various people to see who would hear and accept the message.

Winding backwards a bit into the story the introduction addressed the issue of angels and how today's culture has popularized the notion of angels. Indeed from the 1990s to the present, angels have become mainstream in American culture as a soft, fuzzy, feel-good counterpoint to the evil that surrounds us.

Sometimes when visiting people in the hospital I would be asked by someone, "Do you believe in angels?" Before responding I would usually reply "Why do you ask?" and the person would tell me about being saved by an angel or watched over or even visitations. Occasionally someone would tell me something like "I woke up in the middle of the night and I got this message... I just knew beyond a doubt that I (had to change my job) (had to quit smoking) (etc.)"

When finally pressed to answer their question, I would simply say "Yes, I believe that God sends messengers to us in all kinds of ways and I believe that people are given a choice to change their life or not as a result." No matter how the message is packaged or the form in which it is delivered or even who delivers the message, when you change your life as a result of a message, you have been given a gift from God.

In Greek the word "angel" means simply a messenger. At about ten minutes before 9:00 t ...

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