Fourth Monday in Advent

Now is the time to prepare for the Coming of the Messiah this Advent Season.  Meet us here each day of Advent where we will be posting a blog written by members of First Presbyterian Church of Bethlehem,  representing an intergenerational sampling of contributors as they reflect on the scripture selections from the Daily Lectionary Advent readings from the Book of Common Worship. If you would like to download a copy of the First Presbyterian Church of Bethlehem Advent Devotional, CLICK HERE.

LECTIONARY READING: 2 Samuel 7:1–17; Titus 2:11–3:8a; Luke 1:39–48a, 48b–56

The familiar Christmas song, “I’ll be home for Christmas, you can count on me….” may remind us of a gift-laden tree or a feast table.  Our hearts swell with memories of loved ones, or longings for sweet times together.

A good home is a great gift.  King David intends to build a home for God.  But God presses the pause button, and reverses the offer; God will establish a home for David.  God promises a reprieve from enemies, the certainty of offspring, and the security of a place for God’s chosen people.  These promises remind David that while he rests, God is at work.

In New Testament times, God’s people are eager (again) to compile a list of good deeds long enough to achieve salvation.  But the Apostle Paul encourages Titus to rest in grace.  This grace has appeared through Christ who gave himself to secure our coming home to God.  This grace is not because of any human quest, but by God’s unending mercy.

We seek to understand, but it’s beyond human comprehension.  Grace.  

We might rather earn, but it’s beyond our earning.  Grace.  

By this grace, we are equipped to wait with hope for the appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.  This is Advent: we wait for our Redeemer, for he comes to bring us home to God.  

Prayer: “Our God, our Help in ages past, Our Hope for years to come,  be Thou our Guide while life shall last, and our eternal home.” -Isaac Watts

-Rev. Beth Case