“. . . you shall call his name Jesus,
for he will save his people from their sins.” Matthew 1:21

What is Advent? This morning begins our celebration of Advent. So what is it? Advent is the traditional season of waiting, expecting, and hoping as we look forward to celebrating the coming of Christ at Christmas. The word “advent” comes from a Latin word that means “coming.” During this season, we put ourselves in the shoes of those faithful generations who waited patiently for the coming of Messiah. At the same time, we also celebrate the fact that we know He has already come in fulfillment of Scripture and will come again in His second advent when He fills this world with the promise of His kingdom. So Advent is a time for renewing our hope and yearning for Christ our King!

What is the point of the Advent Wreath. It is a long standing tradition. For hundreds of years Christians have used an Advent wreath to symbolize their hope in the coming of Christ. By lighting the candles and reading the biblical story, we are remind ourselves of the meaning of Christ’s birth and the reason He came. The candles on the outside of the ring represent each of the four weeks leading up to Christmas, while the center candle represents Christ Himself in His coming. Our focus this year will be on the following Advent themes:

Week #1 – Longing for Christ to set things right (Psalm 8 and Hebrews 2)
Week #2 – Prophesy and God’s Promise to Bethlehem (Micah 5:1-5)
Week #3 – Mary and God’s Promise Fulfilled to the Virgin (Luke 1:26-39)
Week #4 – Joseph and God’s Promise to a Just Man (Matthew 1:18-25)

It is our hope that this weekly focus will help you fixs your attention and that of your children on the promise of Christ fulfillment at Christmas. Then, with the coming of January and the New Year, we will begin a new study in the book of Galatians. And boy, do we need Galatians! I have rarely felt the sense of urgency I feel now as I consider our need for the Gospel truths in Galatians.

Looking forward to the Joy of Celebrating Him with You!

Pastor Scott