Everything God does is according to His plan and purpose. Since we are all so busy at this time of year, let’s keep this simple and short… but also very purposeful. Our purpose in celebrating Advent—the four week season of preparation prior to Christmas day — is to remember how God has graciously revealed Himself to man since the beginning of time and to keep us centered on Jesus during this busy time. The first week of Advent, we focus on prophesy. Throughout the Old Testament, we read of God preparing His people with prophecies and promises of the Prince of Peace who would come and bring True Light into a dark world. God’s purposeful plan was predestined from before the foundation of the world and it was first proclaimed after the fall of man when Lord God said to the serpent:
I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. (Genesis 3:15)
This is commonly referred to as the proto-evangelium— the first announcement of the gospel. It is the first revelation of God’s mercy and grace in His plan to rescue and redeem man. Genesis 3:15 is the first prophecy in the Bible. It promises the One who would come and defeat sin and death, the promised seed Who would bring light into the world that had been darkened by sin. God promised to send a Saviour, a rescuer, and He confirmed His promise with words of hope given to His prophets and preserved through His Word.
Prophesies of the Incarnation of the Lord Jesus Christ
Prophesy: Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
Fulfillment: Matthew 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
Prophesy: Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given….
Fulfillment: Matthew 1:23 “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” Luke 1:31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.
Prophesy: Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Fulfillment: Luke 2:11-12 “For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. Luke 4:18-19 “The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.” John 3:16-17 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” Ponder the wonder of Christ’s birth and rejoice in God’s gift of Jesus being born. Consider how Deity transcended time and space, and entered into humanity. Consider how Jesus, the Lord of Glory, humbled himself and came to earth; how the Royal One, the King of kings, entered into poverty. And consider how, on that dark night centuries ago, True Light entered our world in the form of a lowly infant. Give thanks for the Light of Jesus in your life and, just as John the Baptist testified of the True Light, be ready to be a witness to the Light of Christmas—the Lord Jesus Christ.
John 1:6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the True Light which gives light to every man coming into the world.
John 8:12 Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
The Season of Advent (the 4 weeks before Christmas)
Will You Find Rest This Advent Season?
Advent Candle 1 – HOPE: Prophecy Gives Hope (video)
Advent Candle 2 – LOVE: Promise Reveals Love (video)
Advent Candle 3 – JOY: Jesus Is Our Joy (video)
Advent Candle 4 – PEACE: Pause to Find Peace (video)
Christmas-themed GOT QUESTIONS?
- Does “Xmas” Cross Jesus Out of Christmas?
- The Most Important Lesson for YOU in the Nativity Story?
- Misconceptions about the Journey to Bethlehem (video)
- Errors in the Nativity Story? Is Jesus’ birthplace wrong?
- Who were the Three Wise Men? Fact or legend?
- How Did the Wise Men Know to Follow His Star?
- Did The Wise Men Arrive 12 Days After Jesus’ Birth? Or Was It Much Later?
- What is the significance of the Three Kings' gifts?
- Was Jesus born in a stable, a cave or a house?
- Was Mary a Levite, making Jesus both King and Priest?
- Was Jesus born in September (not December?)
- Should we celebrate Jesus’ birthday in September?
- Was Jesus born in a stable, cave or house?
- Should Christians Celebrate Christmas?
- How did Jesus become a man?
- How did Jesus become a man?
- Do You Get These 7 Things Right or Wrong About the Nativity Story?
- Are You Stuck in the Middle This Christmas? (short video lessons from the popular comedy TV show "The Middle.")
- What are the Prophecies of Christmas? (video)
- Where are the genealogies of Jesus in Mark and John?
- Why are There Two Different Genealogies for Jesus?
- A Boastful Christmas Letter
- Peace Delivers Hope
- Promise Ignites Hope
- Preparation Produces Hope
- Prophesy Reveals Hope
- Alone at Christmas? Feeling lonely?
- Another reason God came to dwell with man.
- How can you have a white Christmas without snow?
- Christmas, abortion and Joseph, the forgotten man of Christmas
- Remember the Wonder of Christmas
- Will you find rest, peace and joy this advent season?
- A Christmas Morning Prayer by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)
- What If You Had Been There When Jesus Was Born? (video)
- Pause to Find Hope (video)
- Pause to Receive the Promises of God (video)
- Pause to See Jesus (video)
- Pause to Hear God’s Plan (video)
- Christmas Trivia Fun
- Songs of Christmas Series: Away in a Manger; Mary, Did You Know? Rose of Bethlehem; Good Christian Men Rejoice; Hark! The Herald Angels Sing; I Wonder As I Wander; What Child Is This? The First Noel In the Bleak Midwinter (a golden oldie)
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to give a reason for the Hope that you have (1 Peter 3:15). When you can’t share the gospel with your words, share it by leaving tracts that tell people about God's grace.
When leaving a tract, always be diligent to pray about the short gospel message. Pray that it be found by someone who is in need of Jesus’ saving grace, and pray that the person will have a tender heart and open ears to receive the gift Jesus desires to give them.
By the power of the Holy Spirit, even a small tract can help in turning a broken sinner from darkness to light.
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