Summary: What is uncertain is not the “coming” of Christ but our own reception of him, our own response to him, our own readiness and capacity to “go forth to meet him.
Speaking of Jesus the Christ:
"What is uncertain is not the “coming” of Christ but our own reception of him, our own response to him, our own readiness and capacity to “go forth to meet him.”
Quote from Thomas Merton
The time between the Hebrew Scriptures and the Greek New Testament God didn’t say a word to them. He was silent for four hundred years!
So Isaiah was explaining to God:
"YOU were angry and we sinned...Because you hide yourself we transgressed..." blaming God for-or explaining to God- their action in one verse and yet able to acknowledge the inclusive nature of transgressions in the next.
This is the first Sunday of Advent. Advent is a time to prepare for God coming to earth.
Luke 2:8 That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. 9 Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, 10 but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. 11 The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!
Luke 2:14 “Glory to God in highest heaven,
and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”
Here God does not stay a warm, snugly baby for long. Before long, this God is challenging us to act, think and even pray differently. We can't anticipate what will be asked of us. We can just wait and hear the Holy Spirit if we are open to hearing.
It would be easier if all we had to do was prepare for Christ at Christmas by shopping, writing cards, decorating and putting up Christmas Trees and all the decorations. But this God is not asking for a beautiful house to be received in, rather an open heart that God wants us to have is a requirement of God. Having an open heart is more challenging for us that anything else?
Looking at these Scriptures we can get what is going on during this time in our Hebrew text:
4 For since the world began,
no ear has heard
and no eye has seen a God like you,
who works for those who wait for him!
* Waiting on God isn't doing nothing. It’s doing all we can while waiting for him.
5 You (God) welcome those who gladly do good,
who follow godly ways.
But you have been very angry with us,
----Why was that?----
7 Yet no one calls on your name
or pleads with you for mercy.
Therefore, you have turned away from us
and turned us over to our sins.
8 And yet, O Lord, you are our Father.
We are the clay, and you are the potter.
We all are formed by your hand.
* A potter can’t work with dry clay.
-Being wet with the tears over the things we don't do
-Being wet with the tears over not listening to the Holy Spirit.
9 Don’t be so angry with us, Lord.
Please don’t remember our sins forever.
Look at us, we pray,
and see that we are all your people.
* In speaking to the unbelieving Jews, Jesus emphasized their need to receive His words as truth and obey His commands. They replied, “We be Abraham’s seed” ( John 8:33, KJV ).
* Nothing we do, because we once received Christ into our hearts will save us if we don't continue in His word.
****John 8: 31 Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. 32 And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
-The truth God has come and he is talking, helping and showing his mercy. But we have to really know Him as Jesus the Christ the sender of the Holy Spirit to help us in our daily work on our way to be with Him in Heaven forever.