Christmas Keywords 1: Come

Question for reflection …
How will you prepare your heart this Advent for Christ’s coming?

Today is the first Sunday of Advent. Our Advent series will look at several keywords of the Christmas story. Today, we’ll look at the word “come.”

The word “Advent” comes from the Latin word, adventus, which means “coming.”

There has always been a yearning for God to come (there still is). In fact, the Scriptures are full of stories of God coming to us. I like the way the writer to the Hebrews put it: “Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets” (1.1).

We can go all the way back to the beginning of the Bible and talk about Creation. Early on, after Adam and Eve committed the very first sin, God came looking for them.

I also think of God coming and appearing to Moses in the burning bush, as he prepared to come and visit his people, Israel, in captivity. God also came to other people groups, like Nineveh, where God confronted the people with their sin through the prophet, Jonah.

But the greatest example of God coming to us is through Jesus Christ. A moment ago, I read Hebrews 1.1. The very next verse says, “But now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son" (1.2).

John 1.1-14

Jesus came to bring abundant life!
"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." (John 10.10)

God’s coming always requires a response!
“Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.” (Matthew 4.17)

Our response is to repent, to return. God’s coming always requires a response. We can come to God because God comes to us!

In fact, it’s our responsibility to come to God. I like one definition I heard for responsibility: it’s the ability to respond! Action is important, more than belief. Polls show that most everyone believes in God, and many even believe that Jesus is God’s Son. But there is a huge disconnect between the number of people who “believe” and the number of people who act on those beliefs! (For example, some estimates are that only about 20% of the American population attend worship each week.)

Question for reflection …
Have you acted on Christ’s invitation to come into your heart/life?

"I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me." (John 14.6)

Because of what God has done for us, through Jesus, we can come confidently to God’s throne. (See Hebrews 4.14-16)

I mentioned earlier that the Scriptures are filled with stories of God’s coming to us. And not only does the Story begin with God’s creating us, and coming to us, and even God’s yearning to come to us, it ends that way as well. The final words of the New Testament are, “Come, Lord Jesus!” (Revelation 22.21)

Questions for reflection …

  • Are these words your heart’s yearning as well?
  • Do you long for Christ to come?
  • Are you prepared?
  • What are you doing to prepare for his coming?

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