Isaiah 64:1-9, Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19, I Corinthians 1:3-9, Mark 13:24-37
Do you remember the excitement you felt as a child waiting for Christmas day? It was with that same anticipation that the Jewish people looked for their Messiah. From the time of Adam and Eve, when sin entered the world, God had been separated from his children. In Isaiah 64:6-7 we read:
“All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. No one calls on your name or strives to lay hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us and have given us over to our sins.”
God in his divine grace did not forget his chosen people. He spoke through the prophet Isaiah promising them a Savior. Psalm 80:17-19 gives us a glimpse of that Messiah:
“Let your hand rest on the man at your right hand, the son of man you have raised up for yourself. Then we will not turn away from you; revive us, and we will call on your name. Restore us, Lord God Almighty; make you face shine on us, that we may be saved.”
Throughout the Old Testament God is there for his children, but he is somewhat of a mystery. To the Israelites He is above them, a cloud by day and fire by night. Even Abraham and Moses who stood before the Lord saw only a burning bush or a brilliance too bright for the human eye to behold. It is not until the Christ child comes into the world that we meet God face to face. Jesus is the Living God, love personified. In him we begin to understand the Father who is in Heaven, our Creator who has come down to earth once again to claim us as his precious children.
Mark 13:26-27 gives a descriptive account of Christ’s return when he will gather up his people:
“At that time people will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens.”
As we enter the season of Advent, may we await the coming of our Lord with the same excited anticipation as that of the Jewish people of old. May our focus remain sharp as we look to God for his divine guidance and praise him for his everlasting love.