Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Thursday prior to Advent 4


Romans 16:25–27—A fitting end to the book of Romans, in which St. Paul has so clearly proclaimed Christ as the Savior of the world, apart from works, this doxology (hymn of praise) is especially appropriate during this Advent season, as we prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ, who ‘has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations.

The age old mystery was revealed to all nations in the Scriptures and preaching of Christ. This reading constitutes the closing words of the book of St. Paul’s letter to the Romans, “Now to him…be glory…” The passage is appropriate for this week because of Paul reference to the disclosure of the mystery kept secret for ages. The revelation is the coming of Christ. This was forecast and promised by the prophets. This Gospel of revelation is now shared with all nations.

The child born in a manger in Bethlehem was none other than the Son of God, the promised Messiah. Because “The word became flesh,” Advent as the time of preparation for the Messiah, makes sense. This holy child is “very God of very God.” In him God invaded human history. He was the Christ-event, the Word-event. If this is not true, then there is no meaning or message to Advent.[2]

As we get closer to the time of celebrating Christ’s coming we prepare earnestly in prayer. The following prayers correspond with the words of the great Advent hymn, “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.”

O Come Thou wisdom from on high,
Who ord’rest all things mightily;
To us the path of knowledge ho
And teach us in the way to go
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel Shall come to thee, O Israel 

O Wisdom, Proceeding from the mouth of the Most High, pervading and permeating all creation, mightily ordering all things; come and teach us the way of prudence.[3]


[1] Image copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things
[2] Lectionary Preaching Workbook Series B, John Brokhoff © 1980 CSS Publishing, Lima, OH
[3] O Come, O Come Emmanuel, Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis

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