Summary: This sermon focuses on the Gospel being "good news." Advent is about the "coming" and "arrival" of Jesus, the Messiah - anointed one.
“The Meaning of Advent”
The Christian world celebrates the season of Advent on the four Sundays prior to Christmas. Today is the second Sunday of Advent. The dictionary gives two descriptions for Advent “Coming” and “Arrival.”
The message of Advent is about the coming and arrival of Jesus – Savior and long promised Messiah. An angel of the Lord appeared to Shepherds and announced, “I bring you good news of great joy for everyone! The Savior – yes, the Messiah, (Xristos – anointed one) The Lord – has been born tonight in Bethlehem, the city of David!” (Luke 2:10-11)
Good news in the original is “euaggelizomai” – I bring good news or I preach the gospel. “Evangel” can mean either good news or Gospel. The coming and arrival of Jesus is good news. It was good news then and it is good news today.
Regardless of the circumstance, the pain, or problem, we look beyond the pain or problem to Jesus. Whatever the current circumstance, Jesus is good news.
As Christians we don’t hide our head in the sand like an ostrich. We face the reality that we live in a troubled world. We don’t deny the reality of 9/ll/01 like a successful author in England who says the United States staged 9/ll/01 in cooperation with Osama bin Laden. He claims the governmental leaders in the United States of America are the terrorists.
We know that bad news makes the headlines most of the time. What wrong with nations and people are highlighted and little attention is given to positive uplifting news.
Jesus ministered in a culture that was pro-Roman and not friendly to followers of “The Way.” The culture Jesus lived in was one of high taxes, roaming bands of renegades led by men like Barababus, and corruption in high governmental places.
Jesus didn’t attack his culture; he attacked false religions practices and he did focus on telling the Gospel of Good news. Jesus came bringing Light to a world in darkness, politically, intellectually, and spiritually.
Jesus was the fulfillment of what the prophet Isaiah foretold in Isaiah 9:2 and 6: “The people who walk in darkness will see a great light – a light that will shine on all who live in the land where death casts its shadow. For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. And the government will rest on his shoulders. These will be his royal titles: wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace.”
The message of advent is about the coming of Jesus, He is good news of great joy to all the people.
In fulfillment of prophecy Jesus came as Prophet, Priest and King.
Three kinds of leaders were anointed with oil prophets, priests and kings.
Elijah was instructed by the Lord to anoint Elisha as prophet in his place. I Kings 19:16
The Lord instructed Moses to anoint Aaron with oil, setting him apart as a priest of the Lord. Exodus 40:13-15
Elisha the prophet commissioned his assistants to go to Ramoth-gilead and find Jehu son of Jehoshaphat and pour oil on his head and say, “I anoint you to be the king over Israel. Then open the door and run for your life.” 2 Kings 9:1-3
Jesus came to earth as Prophet and the Teacher anointed by the Holy Spirit. Deuteronomy 18:15 states, “The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet.”
I. Jesus came as Prophet.
As Prophet Jesus preached God’s Word to all people (Mark 1:15) Jesus came proclaiming the good news of God, “The time has come”, he said. “The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!”
Jesus proclaimed truth to everyone (John 1:9) “The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.”
As prophet Jesus calls for a decision. Jesus wants to give meaning to your life. Jesus wants to stop you in your tracks. You are living your life at a fast pace. Your own pace. You are going nowhere fast. Jesus, the incarnate Son of God, speaks and calls you to turn around and go His Way.
Jesus came preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom. (Luke 4:43) Jesus said, “I must preach the Good News of the Kingdom of God.”
Jesus called fisherman, a tax collector and common ordinary men to follow him. Jesus told them to “come and see.” Come and see his life in action. Jesus did not separate his life from his message. The disciples of Jesus learned how to live a victorious Christian life through on-the-job training.
Jesus often spoke using word pictures that confused his followers. Jesus went into the temple in Jerusalem and chased out men selling cattle, sheep and doves for temple offerings. Jesus used a whip made of rope to make his point and turned over their tables piled high with money. Jesus said, “Get these out of here! How dare you turn my Father’s house into a market? The Jews watching the event asked Jesus to show them a miracle to prove his authority to do what he had just done. (John 2:19) Jesus gave them his answer: “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”