Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Mid-Week Advent 1

Lord our God, grant that we may be ready to receive Christ when He comes in glory and to share in the banquet of heaven, where He lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen

As we begin our preparation for the celebration of Christmas through the season of Advent we anticipate Christ’s Second Advent – His return visibly to this earth as judge and king. In the Old Testament through the prophet Jeremiah we are told that God would send us His Messiah to execute justice and righteousness on this earth. God promises to send a Branch from David.

1. God promises to fulfill his promiseThe days are coming,’ declares the LORD, ‘when I will fulfill the gracious promise I made to the house of Israel and to the house of Judah Vs. 14

a. Was not this promise fulfilled in Christ? Ultimately, they are combined in the highest sense in Christ and are yet to be fulfilled in His reign on earth. (cf. Ps 110:4) The Psalmist David under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit could look into time and see the coming Savior Jesus coming to assume His throne as a royal priest under a divine order. Says David, The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind: “You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.

b. There is still a promise to be fulfilled. That will come at the end of days. (Parousia) When Jesus breaks into time and space for a second time then all honor authority dominion will be given to Him when He returns as judge and king.

c. Has the promise been fulfilled in you? What is needed now, more then ever, is a personal experience with Jesus Christ. How does that happen? It happens when we meet Him where He will be found; in the waters of Holy Baptism, in His meal, in His word which is read, proclaimed, taught, shared. His desire is to grow deeper in a relationship with you.
True, the preparation for the season of Christmas is filled with its own hectic pace and its own agendas and plans. To this night, while it is still early in the Advent season, make an intentional plan to meet the Lord where He can be found so that you may grow in faith in this season.

2. Who then is the One who is coming?

a. He is the Son of David – royalty – vs.15 In those days and at that time I will make a righteous Branch sprout from David’s line; he will do what is just and right in the land. Jeremiah's picture of the coming Messiah is varied and unique. Those days" are the messianic times. It is through the Lord’s Messiah, the righteous One, that the restoration and attendant blessings will be realized.

b. His work; justice and righteousness vs.15b – he will do what is just and right in the land. This is the purpose of His coming. He chose to break into time and space to begin the work of your redemption. That plan was to restore the earth back to the Father. And how did He do this? Through the shedding of innocent blood. Through His sacrifice for sin. Through His innocent suffering and death. That, you might be His own and live before Him in righteousness and innocence forever.

c. Result of His coming – salvation – vs.16 - In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will live in safety. This is the name by which it will be called: The LORD Our Righteousness.
Salvation and safety are in store for Judah and Jerusalem because of the presence of justice and righteousness personified in the person of Jesus Christ.

God promises to send a Branch from David. That Branch came in the person of Jesus Christ. His coming will result in new beginnings.

Schnorr von Carolsfeld, woodcuts © WELS Permission to use these copyrighted items is limited to personal and congregational use.

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