Tag Archives: his coming

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.

2; two, his advent, his coming

3 Dec

2 Corinthians 9:15 ‘Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!’

Paul is always attempting to describe his experiences with the Lord. From his fall on the road to Damascus to his immediate blindness; from his journeys to Jerusalem, Corinth, Colossi etc.; to his stay in Arabia restudying the scriptures. In all his letters, his writings and his speeches, Paul seeks to describe the indescribable: the gift of the gospel – Jesus’ coming as both the the proclaimer and the proclamation, the gospel made flesh itself.

People respond to this indescribable gospel in many different ways. For example, some, when approached by the idea of a miraculous birth, are stuck mute ( Zechariah in Luke 1 ) while others sing as the Angels of Bethlehem’s fields. Some see those being released from demon possession as a miracle, while others see the work to the evil one himself. ( Matthew 12: 22-28 )

The good news of the gospel evokes then many diverse reactions, from fisherman immediately leaving their nets to angels stopping down from the heavens to reflect continually ( 1 Peter 1: 12 Weymouth New Testament )

But, what about the messenger? the proclaimer? As Jesus handles the precious gift of the gospel, his words and his actions; his heart and mind; and even His physical body, reveal essential attributes of the gospel, the gift . As Jesus answers John the Baptist’s disciples when they ask, Are you the one?

Jesus replied, “Go back and report to John what you hear and see:

This is how Jesus reveals, proclaims the gospel: by His actions and His words. He is both messenger and the message at the same moment.

And Luke tells us how Jesus views both His mission and the good news of the gospel, ( 4 )

40 ‘ At sunset, the people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of sickness, and laying his hands on each one, he healed them. 41 Moreover, demons came out of many people, shouting, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak,because they knew he was the Messiah.

42 At daybreak, Jesus went out to a solitary place. The people were looking for him and when they came to where he was, they tried to keep him from leaving them. 43 But he said, “I must proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent.” 44 And he kept on preaching in the synagogues of Judea.’

On this, His first journey after being tempted by the evil one in the desert and then rejected and driven out of his hometown, Jesus moves on. And His moving, His unstoppable coming journeys reveal the gospel: God so loved the world He must proclaim the Kingdom of love and mercy to all.

In Capernaum and surrounding towns Jesus heals at sunset; and He prays at the sunrise in a solitary space. He is at His Father’s, and their collective works: loving us.

We both are the receivers of the indescribable gift of the Gospel and the transformed of the gift. That is whom the angels stoop to see: us, living out the good news. And Capernaum’s people show us power of indescribable gift. They never want to see their gift leave.

Now, instead of threatening and driving Jesus away, the peoples come to Him and try to restrain Jesus from leaving them. And how does Jesus respond to outpouring, this overflow of love? He leaves. Why? He tells them,

“I must proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent.”

Jesus must leave this love feast because his mission is to proclaim. He must go. I am sure that his leaving was one of his daybreak prayer concerns. It is hard, so hard to leave those who love you, especially after trials and rejections. But leave Jesus must.

His proclaiming the good news of His, of our Kingdom, is why He was sent. The indescribable gift of the gospel is both the proclaimer and the message. And both have to be sent out. And to us. So,

44 “And he kept on preaching in the synagogues of Judea.”

Jesus’ words are still read and taught; still mediated on and spoken aloud.

So is his life. Why?

Because ‘ he kept on ‘. He kept on giving, giving, living, the Gospel. Even to the cross where he died for it, for us.

My prayer: daily my Lord, help me to see more, to stoop down deeper, into understanding the indescribable…

Our life with Him; the Gospel.

Matthew 11: 15 ‘He who has ears, yet him hear.’

advent wonder 2021, his coming

29 Oct

Advent season comes in winter, when there is less light than any other time of year. Our need for light, our deep desire for light this season, can be seen by all the artificial lights we surround ourselves with: building lights; Christmas tree illuminations; candle lighting worship services abound. We need light. Light comforts.

The peoples of Jesus’ time needed light also. Living without modern lightings, darkness was their constant companion, their ‘old friend’ if you will. They searched the scriptures, especially the words of the prophets, in search of the ultimate saving light, a Messiah. This is the Advent they prayed, they waited, they lived for. As a candle in a darkened room comforts, so did the OT scriptures comfort a people’s’ waiting.

On Mondays this Advent season we will be looking at scriptures these ancient people studied for light on the Messiah’s advent. ( For example, the Magi were one such group. ) On Fridays we will looking at New Testament scriptures that describe Jesus’ coming, His life.

In a real sense the Old Testament prophecies were first a darkly understood description of the Messiah’s advent; the New Testament aligned with these Old Testaments, reveal the Messiah Jesus in full understanding. Together the OT & the NT give full light. And they clearly illuminate a loving, saving Messiah, Jesus.

Welcome to Advent 2021, his coming.

We begin on Monday, 22 November looking at Isaiah 61 verses 1-4 & 8b – 10

Friday 26 November we will look at Luke 4 verses 14 -22 a & 25 – 30