We’re now in the holiday season, and I’m always surprised how quickly the year has gone by. Moses was right when he said of the passing years, “they are soon gone” (Psalm 90:10). But each moment that goes by brings us one moment closer to the goal of our salvation, eternal glory in the presence of Christ. How brief is our life in this world, but what a future is in store for us!
For Advent, I am preaching four sermons on four gifts or blessings that God gives us with the gift of his Son Jesus. Each Lord’s Day we will “open” another gift. Last Sunday we opened the gift of hope, and for that I preached on Zechariah’s prophecy of the coming Christ from Luke 1:67-80. In a world in which, according to Henry David Thoreaux, “the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation,” what a joy it is to have a certain hope of salvation in Christ. Just as Jesus has given us peace with God through his death and resurrection (Romans 5:1), so he will forevermore “guide our feet into the way of peace” (Luke 1:79).
After our “Harvest Dinner” feast at church (and a nap at home!), I preached from Mark 2:18-22 at the evening service. The putative subject of this passage is the question of fasting, but the real concern is the significance of the coming of Christ into the world. He is the “new wine” that demands “fresh wineskins,” that is, a life of worship and devotion wholly oriented to the reality of his coming into the world.
To run with the biblical metaphor a bit, may you be “intoxicated” with the new wine of Christ and the filling of his Holy Spirit!
Soli Deo Gloria!