Advent 4, his coming: why he comes; why he came

17 Dec
Jesus comes to Paul

from Romans 1:16 ‘For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.’


Why did Jesus come to earth? What do we celebrate, really celebrate, at Christmas, at Advent? What is this, his coming, meaning?


Paul’s writings and life reflect the purpose, the depth and breath, of Advent. His life is Advent’s scope.


A serial murderer; a destroyer of lives, of life; a hater, Paul has a great deal to be ashamed of.But he is not. He believes that his murdering of the innocent is not a good thing but the best of actions. Paul is killing for his Pharisaical beliefs with love. He is killing fo his faith.


Yet, Jesus enters; Paul is spoken to; thrown off his killing Damascus journey; blinded for 3 days; and embraced by a Christian and healed. Paul can know see Jesus and the gospel truth: Jesus came for him.
And what is the ultimate purpose of Jesus’ coming? It is to remove all sin, and all of the shame of sin, from our lives. Both sin and its seemingly enduring shames are totally removed.


Paul is not ashamed of the gospel because he – a serial murderer – is not ashamed of himself.


Jesus comes at Advent for Paul, He comes for me. He comes to remove sin and its shames. He comes as a newborn to create newborns. He comes to create Paul from Saul.
Paul writes on this coming to his adopted son, in 1 Timothy 1:


15 Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners —of whom I am the worst. 16 But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

and…


14 The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.

Advent is a time to prepare for His coming, His pouring out of grace, and faith and healing love. And it is poured out ‘abundantly’ or as a previous NIV translation states, in ‘overflow.’


Jesus comes, pours, washes, heals in such overflow that sin and its shames are no more. Advent is a time of reflecting and meditating on His overflow. He comes.

My prayer: Lord, I worship you for you overflow … not just for me, but for all. For even the worst of sinners. Come, overflow, my Lord. Come.

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