Monday, November 27, 2017

Who is coming to town?

He's making a list
He's checking it twice;
He's gonna find out who's naughty or nice
Santa Claus is coming to town
A very very, very familiar tune that is in regular rotation at every department store this Christmas season. But though we envision Santa Claus riding in his sleigh while dasher, dancer and prancer and the rest of the gang make sure that every gift is delivered just in time for Christmas, we must ask ourselves, “have I been naughty or nice”? Or as the tune later reads...
He knows when you are sleeping,
He knows when you’re awake
He knows when you are bad or good
So be good for goodness sake
Again, we must ask ourselves, “have I been bad or good”? On further examination, we very well know that if Santa were to come to town, there would be great wonder whether we would measure up to his standard. For if we were to follow this song to its every word , not only would the onus be on us, but we would inevitably fall short because of sin.

As we enter into the season of Advent (meaning “Coming”) we reflect upon the coming of Christ from past, present and future. It is in this coming that we look inward as we ask the question, “why did Jesus come to the world for us?” He did not come to see if we were good enough but “for our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2Cor5:21). Jesus is our redeemer who paid the ultimate price for our sins so that all the questions, “have I been naughty or nice?”, “have I been bad or good?” are laid to rest by Jesus body and blood shed on the Cross. Without Jesus coming to us in the flesh, who could answer for our sins?

In the victorious lamb of God, Jesus comes to us this day by His word and sacrament. Hearing His word (Rom 10:17), dwelling on Holy Scripture (Col 3:16, 2Tm3:16-17, Jsh1:8), Baptism (Gal3:27, Rm6) and receiving His body and blood for the forgiveness of our sins (Mt26:26-28, Mk 14:22-24, Lk22:19-20, 1Cor11:23- 25) , we are given His word that delivers forgiveness, life and salvation. Without Jesus coming to us in the word, where would be in this dark world? And thus we are pointed to what is to come in His final return where He will take us home. “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” (Rev21:4). A glorious picture of great anticipation as we faithfully wait for what is to come in His return. Without Jesus coming to us on the last day, where is our hope?

Thanks be to God for our merciful Lord who says, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, who is and who was and who is to come” (Rev1:4). And by His word, we await in faith for the advent of our King. For in His arrival, whether it is past, present, or future, we are greatly comforted in Him, for He is our true restoration.

May God bless you this Advent and Christmas season.
+Pastor Jeong

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