It is no wonder that the Scripture says of Him, "Jesus could not be hid." After His message to the Scribes and Pharisees He departed from them and went down to the borders of Tyre and Sidon. He entered a certain house to get away from the multitude, but the Word says, "He could not be hid." From His coming into the world, His life could never be hid.
At His Birth He Could Not Be Hid. God put out a special star over Bethlehem the night He was born, and a group of angels announced the event to a group of lowly shepherds on the hills of Judah. A heavenly chorus began to sing, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men."
At His Presentation He Could Not Be Hid. When the days were fulfilled, Mary brought Jesus to the temple to present Him to the Lord as the Law of Moses commanded. In the temple was an old man named Simeon. The Holy Ghost had revealed to him that he would not see death until he had seen the Lord’s Christ. When Simeon saw Jesus, he took Him in his arms and blessed God, and said, "Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy work: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation."
At His Baptism He Could Not Be Hid. John had preached of the One that would come after him, whose shoe latches he wasn’t worthy to unloosen, and the day Jesus appeared, John lifted up his hand and said, "Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world." When John baptized Jesus, the heavens opened and Spirit descended in the form of a dove upon Jesus and a voice said, "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased."
In His Earthly Ministry He Could Not Be Hid. Often times Jesus would grow weary and tired. He would steal away to rest, but He could not hide. Our text reveals this. "He could not be hid."
At His Crucifixion He Could Not Be Hid. Though the world denied Him as Lord, all creation revealed that He was the Son of God. The sun refused to shine, the moon gave no light. The earth trembled and the rocks split asunder. He was lifted, openly, publicly between heaven and earth.
At His Burial He Could Not Be Hid. They placed His body in a borrowed tomb and placed a great stone at the door. The Roman soldiers determined to hide Him for good. They placed a Roman seal on the door; but when it was time for the Scriptures to be fulfilled, He came forth. Death, hell nor the grave could not hide Him.
In the early century, satan tried to hide Jesus' humility, divinity etc. but failed. Satan even tries to do that today. But my friends, satan cannot defeat Jesus now the way he could not defeat Jesus then.
“And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself."” John 12:32
The sin of our souls was the troubled of Christ's soul, when he undertook to redeem and save us, and to make his soul an offering for our sin. Christ was willing to suffer, yet prayed to be saved from suffering. Prayer against trouble may well agree with patience under it, and submission to the will of God in it. Our Lord Jesus undertook to satisfy God's injured honour, and he did it by humbling himself. The voice of the Father from heaven, which had declared him to be his beloved Son, at his baptism, and when he was transfigured, was heard proclaiming that He had both glorified his name, and would glorify it. Christ, reconciling the world to God by the merit of his death, broke the power of death, and cast out Satan as a destroyer. Christ, bringing the world to God by the doctrine of his cross, broke the power of sin, and cast out Satan as a deceiver. The soul that was at a distance from Christ, is brought to love him and trust him. Jesus was now going to heaven, and he would draw men's hearts to him thither. There is power in the death of Christ to draw souls to him. We have heard from the gospel that which exalts free grace, and we have heard also that which enjoins duty; we must from the heart embrace both, and not separate them.
“which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth." - Colossians 1:6
At churches were growing in the beginning, think about Roman persecutions. Many people were killed by Roman government.
Nero, the emperor, was so ruthless and wicked used to nail Christians on his wall as showpiece. Nero had Christians wrapped in animal skins and smeared with their bloody scent so they would be attacked even more ferociously. Then he lit his garden at night with Christians wearing robes dipped in wax! One of the Book of Martyrs tells of those pulled apart on the rack, boiled in oil, flayed alive, or roasted on a gridiron…and much more too gruesome to go into. He used to throw Christians in front of lions and had established catacombs made up of skulls of Christians. He was a tool of satan. No one knew about the catacombs and later it was discovered by accident. We realize that even though Nero was powerful and also was a tool of satan, could not destroy the proof of the work of the God. Gospel still came out and Lord reached out to people. Gospel cannot be hidden.
The Diocletianic or Great Persecution was the last and most severe persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire. In 303, the Emperors Diocletian, Maximian, Galerius, and Constantius issued a series of edicts rescinding the legal rights of Christians and demanding that they comply with traditional Roman religious practices. Later edicts targeted the clergy and ordered all inhabitants to sacrifice to the Roman gods (a policy known as universal sacrifice). Constantine's decision to cease the persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire was a turning point for Early Christianity, sometimes referred to as the Triumph of the Church, the Peace of the Church or the Constantinian shift. In 313, Constantine and Licinius issued the Edict of Milan decriminalizing Christian worship. The emperor became a great patron of the Church and set a precedent for the position of the Christian emperor within the Church and the notion of orthodoxy, Christendom, ecumenical councils and the state church of the Roman Empire declared by edict in 380.
Today people are getting killed for unwanted reasons like drugs, depression etc. Whereas during the old denture people were getting killed because of their faith. No power can hide Jesus or stop the Gospel!
Illustration:The history of the Cuban church after the 1959 Revolution can be told in three movements: - The 1960s were a decade of persecution; the church declined in size as many Christians left Cuba or left the faith. - The '70s and '80s were decades of discrimination; the church was consolidated to the faithful few. - The '90s—when Cuba's Soviet support system fell apart—became a decade of revival that continues today.
Cuban churches and missionaries in the late 90s went through great number of persecutions. Most of the pastors have had opportunities to leave Cuba, but said God has called them to stay and serve their native country. "The best place in the world for me is the center of God's will," said one 33-year-old pastor. "If you are there, you can withstand anything."
"All things have a divine purpose behind them," said a church leader. "Our limitations have caused the church to grow."
Another pastor said, "And the greatest revival is yet to come. In the end, we want to see all of Cuba for Christ."
Irrespective of discrimination and persecution, the church grew even more. The Gospel cannot be hid neither Christ can be hid.
“For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness.” - 1 Thessalonians 5:5
“"You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.” - Matthew 5:14
Ye are the salt of the earth. Mankind, lying in ignorance and wickedness, were as a vast heap, ready to putrify; but Christ sent forth his disciples, by their lives and doctrines to season it with knowledge and grace. If they are not such as they should be, they are as salt that has lost its savour. If a man can take up the profession of Christ, and yet remain graceless, no other doctrine, no other means, can make him profitable. Our light must shine, by doing such good works as men may see. What is between God and our souls, must be kept to ourselves; but that which is of itself open to the sight of men, we must study to make suitable to our profession, and praiseworthy. We must aim at the glory of God.
We must reflect Christ. Your marriage, your career, your work, all your actions should reflect Christ. For it is written, "I am sending sheep among wolves."
You need to speak to God. You need to spend time reading the word of God and speak with Him everyday via the mode of prayer. If we spend most of our time with negative people we generally become like them. If we spend most of our time with pessimistic people, we become like them. If we spend most of our time with good people, it starts reflecting in us. Likewise, in order to be Godlike, we need to spend more and more time with Him.
What is your purpose of life? Our purpose is not the kingdom of this world, but to become like Jesus. We are on our way to heaven and let us not hide this. So let us show people what the love of God is and what the love of Christ means.
At times we become very loud about the things we possess. We brag about a great eye glass we recently bought, we brag about the hair colour, we brag about the shirt etc. Let this not deceive you people, let people see Jesus through you. If He is our father, may His characteristics shine through you!
Illustration: On 15th February 1597, 26 Christians were crucified at Niz-hiz-aka Hill in Nagasaki, Japan. Amongst them was a young seventeen year old boy, Thomas Kosaki, who had been sentenced to die for his Christian witness - along with his father. He wrote a letter to his mother the evening before his crucifixion.
"Mother, we are supposed to be crucified tomorrow in Nagaski. Please do not worry about anything because we will be waiting for you to come to heaven. Everything in the world vanishes like a dream. Be sure that you never lose the happiness of heaven. Be patient and show love to many people. Most of all, about my little brothers Mansho and Philipo, please see to it that they are not delivered into the hands of the Gentiles. Mother, I commit you to the Lord.”
Don't hide, let Him shine through you. Nothing can hide the presence of God, but individuals that chose not to allow Christ reflect them.
Jesus, who is the light of the world, re-creates us into the light of the world. We are light, not because of anything in ourselves, but because we are in a supernatural union with the light of the world. He calls us to follow after him, and he says, “Whoever follows me will have the light of life and will never walk in darkness”.
Our focus must always be on the light, humbly trusting Jesus to reveal the light through us. Prayerfully remember -- - My influence and visibility is a result of who lives in me, not because of what I do. It is God who puts me in a place of influence and visibility. - I am merely a steward of my influence and visibility, so it is important I get out of the way and let Jesus work through me. - Only God can measure the significance of my influence and visibility. I may influence one person who will then influence the world. My focus is on following Jesus wherever he leads.
May people see Christ through you and may we all be able to glorify His name. We hope you enjoyed today's sermon and you must now plan to work on reflecting Christ through your lives. God Bless!