This week we begin our season of Advent, which is the Christian season of preparation for Christmas. The word “advent” comes from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming” or “visit.” In the Advent season, we keep in mind both “advents,” both “visits” of Christ, the first in Bethlehem and the second yet to come.
Our theme this year is “Jesus Is the Answer.” This week we focus onhope and take our Scripture from Romans 15:8-13:
8 For I tell you that Christ became a servant to the circumcised to show God’s truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs,
9 and in order that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy. As it is written, “Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles, and sing to your name.”
10 And again it is said, “Rejoice, O Gentiles, with his people.”
11 And again, “Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles, and let all the peoples extol him.”
12 And again Isaiah says, “The root of Jesse will come, even he who arises to rule the Gentiles; in him will the Gentiles hope.”
13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
God the Father, because of His great grace and love, determined to save people from every tribe, tongue, people, and nation. Yes, there would be Jews in the people of God, but not just Jews. God desired for Gentiles also to experience the fullness of His grace and love. The term “Gentiles” is the Bible’s word for every other people group in the world outside of the Jewish people. That means that through Jesus Christ, every people group in the world, all 16,000 of them, have hope.
They and we have hope because Jesus, the Son of God, came and lived and died and arose from the grave in His first advent so that every person in the world, regardless of his or her ethnicity or location or time in history, who will believe on Jesus will not perish in Hell, but have everlasting life in Heaven. Friends, that is abounding hope!
And so we have hope because Jesus Christ is the answer to the hopelessness of mankind all over the world. We pray that every man, woman, boy, and girl will find their hope in Jesus, and we look forward to the day when Jesus, our blessed hope, will come again to deliver His people. Therefore, we say to the Lord, “Come quickly, Lord Jesus!”