Advent is a time for a Christian community to practice hope. Where can we find the true HOPE?
1. The Context
– Mark’s Little Apocalypse
– We are expecting Christmas carol but the text is far from what we are anticipating
– Why does the text of the 1st Sunday of Advent begin with Apocalyptic warning?
– What does the word Advent mean?
– The Latin word ADVENT means ‘coming.’
– Three coming of the Lord Jesus: 1) He came among us at Bethlehem. 2) He comes among us NOW in the scripture, the waters of baptism, Eucharistic meal, and the community of faith. 3)He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead.
2. SO WE ARE TO KEEP AWAKE
– Where can we find God? Where should we look for God in this Advent season?
– It depends on what you are looking for
– Jesus’ warning in v21 “Look here is Christ, or There he is.” – That’s what they are looking for which is false/evil and leads us meaningless path.
– We don’t know about the time because God’s time is not our times.
– But his presence and his coming is something to be watchful. That’s why Jesus says “Watch out!”
– It’s something to be discerning. That’s why Jesus says STAY ALERT!
– How much are we anticipating his coming?
– How people of God anticipated in the book of Isaiah 64 “If only you would tear open the heavens and come down!” Their deepest longing that God would tear the curtain in two to be with us! That’s the Good News!
3. God cares those who are crying for God’s mercy
– Isaiah 64:4
– God himself came to the world to bring the good news!
– So Jesus himself is HOPE.
– Today when we look around us, our nations/home/ even churches are divided by their own understanding of inclusiveness. Where is answer/HOPE?
– A clue from the 1st Century Christians who gathered at Jerusalem during the Pentecost day.
– It was very dangerous and critical moment for them. They came from different world & social status. They spoken different languages, but it was strange. When they gathered and united in their devotion to prayer, they were filled with the Spirit. They understood each other. God was uniting them with their unique language and cultures, into one family through the power of the Spirit.
– As we are moving into the season of winter…
– Planting a seed may not be a good idea
– but the Good News is we may still plant a seed of love right now through our Loving Action that Jesus taught us through his life and death, and inviting everyone to join in our Faith Journey TOGETHER as we share the Good News about who came as the Light of the world, and who continue to come into our lives, and who WILL COME AGAIN not only n the last day of the judgement but EVERY DAY in our life of crying, loving, and sharing. Thanks be to GOD!