Friday, December 4, 2009
And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. Luke 1:76-78 (emphasis mine)
These verses are Zechariah speaking about his son, John, and his special job to prepare for the coming of the Lord. We are also preparing for the coming of the Lord, during the “new year” in the church calendar, Advent. I have now experienced one full year of the church calendar as a Lutheran, and have found it to be enriching and Christ-focused. I like the rhythm that it gives: following the Advent of our Lord, his Passion, the time of the church. I also like the connection that it gives me to the Christians who have worshipped this way for centuries. God’s truth stands firm, and He preserves His church. I recently read a blog post in which the young writer stated that “each generation reinvents the church.” I found that to be a disturbing statement. We don’t define the church, God’s Word does. We do not fit the Word to the culture; God’s Word speaks to the world. It is His Holy Spirit, through His Word, that still convicts of sin through His Law, and brings salvation through the Gospel.
It is that Word that proclaims to us His first coming as a babe in the manger, fully God and fully man, born to atone for our sins, and that Word proclaims His second coming, as Savior and Judge.
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus! The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you all. Amen. (Revelation 22:20-21)