This Sunday, we celebrate the beginning of our Advent season, literally, "the coming of Christ." It is also the church's new year. As we heard from Rev. Cindy last week, Jesus' death on the cross for sins was his coronation ceremony if you will. It was the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies concerning Israel and their Messiah. It was also the end of the temple worship as Israel knew it. God would now dwell with His people and they would be his temple. Our readings reflect God's promise for Israel and us beginning in Jeremiah:
Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will fulfill the promise I made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David, and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In those days Judah will be saved, and Jerusalem will dwell securely. And this is the name by which it will be called: ‘The Lord is our righteousness."
But as usual, the disciples want to know what the signs will be when all these things come to pass.
So Jesus takes them aside and tells them what to expect. The bottom line of the message for them -and us- is this:
Stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place,
and to stand before the Son of Man.
So as our Advent season begins, let us prepare the way for our King, Jesus, and stay awake or alert because we do not know when He will arrive.